João II 'o Príncipe Perfeito' de Portugal, rei de Portugal (1455 - 1495) MP

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Nicknames: "O perfeito", "the Perfect Prince (Port. o Príncipe Perfeito)", "O Príncipe Perfeito", "Rei de Portugal"
Birthplace: Lisbon, Lisbon, Portugal
Death: Died in Alvor, Portimão, Faro, Portugal
Occupation: King of Portugal
Managed by: Bjørn P. Brox
Last Updated:

About João II 'o Príncipe Perfeito' de Portugal, rei de Portugal

John II of Portugal From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

João II (Portuguese, pronounced [ʒuˈɐ̃ũ]; English: John II) (March 3, 1455 – October 25, 1495), the Perfect Prince (Port. o Príncipe Perfeito), was the thirteenth king of Portugal and the Algarves. He was born in Lisbon, the son of king Afonso V of Portugal by his wife, Isabel of Coimbra, princess of Portugal. John II succeeded his father briefly in 1477 when the king retired to a monastery, but only became king in 1481. As a prince, John II accompanied his father in the campaigns in northern Africa and was made a knight by him after the victory in Arzila in 1471. In 1473 he married Leonor of Viseu, Infanta of Portugal and his first cousin. Even at a young age, he was not popular among the peers of the kingdom since he was immune to external influence and appeared to despise intrigue. The nobles (including particularly Fernando II, the Duke of Braganza) were afraid of his future policies as king. Events proved them right. After the official accession to the throne in 1481, John II took a series of measures to curtail the overgrown power of his aristocracy and to concentrate power on himself. Immediately, the nobles started to conspire; John II did nothing but observe. Letters of complaint and pleas to intervene were exchanged between the Duke of Braganza and Queen Isabella I of Castile. In 1483, this correspondence was intercepted by royal spies. The House of Braganza was outlawed, their lands confiscated and the duke executed in Évora. In the following year, the Duke of Viseu, his cousin and brother-in-law was summoned to the palace and stabbed to death by the king himself for suspicion of a new conspiracy. Many other people were executed, murdered or exiled to Castile including the bishop of Evora who was poisoned in prison. The king is reported to have said, concerning the rebellious nobles: "I'm the lord of lords, not the server of servants". After these events, no one in the country dared to defy the king. John II was free to govern as he pleased without any other conspiracies during his reign. The nobles who sided with John II or surrendered were forced to make public pledges of loyalty, in return they were given certain privileges, yet they still had to pay taxes. Facing a bankrupt Kingdom, John II showed the initiative to solve the situation by creating an agile regime in which the Council of Scholars took a vital role. The king then made a background check on the population and selected members of the Council according to their abilities, talents and credentials. Popular complaints on judicial acts normally had the sympathy of the king. Already before the Tordesilhas Treaty, such was the profit coming from John II's investements in the overseas explorations and expansion that the Portuguese currency had become the soundest in Europe. The Kingdom could finally collect taxes on its own as all of its debts had been paid of mainly thanks to its main gold source at that time, the coast of Guinea. John II then restored the policies of Atlantic exploration, reviving the work of his great-uncle, Henry the Navigator. The Portuguese explorations were his main priority in government, pushing south the known coast of Africa with the purpose of discovering the maritime route to India. During his reign, the following was achieved: 1482 - The first European settlement outside of Europe is founded, the coastal fortress and trade post of S. Jorge da Mina. 1484 – Diogo Cão discovered the Congo River 1488 - Bartolomeu Dias rounded the Cape of Good Hope 1493 – Álvaro Caminha started the settlement of the São Tomé and Príncipe islands Land expeditions were sent to India and Ethiopia in search of Prester John The complete extent of Portuguese voyages of exploration during this period is unknown. Much was kept secret for fear of competition with neighbouring Castile. The archives of this period were destroyed in the fire after the 1755 Lisbon earthquake and what was not destroyed during the earthquake was either stolen or destroyed during the Peninsular Wars and/or by pure negligence. Modern historians still debate their true extent, and some suspect that Portuguese sailors reached the continent of North America earlier than Christopher Columbus (by approximately 1470) and Brazil by as early as 1480 Template:Factdate. Arguments for this are the much more precise calculations on the diameter of the Earth that Portugal made (calculations from Arabic sources). Alongside John II was the Council of Scholars, composed of prominent scholars, mathematicians, cartographers, theologians, high ranking religious figures of the Kingdom of Portugal, bankers and prominent Jewish intellectuals. These would later be known as the "School of Sagres". While Columbus thought it would be possible to reach India through the West, Portuguese intelligence knew already the way to be much longer and possibly that there was a continent in the middle Template:Factdate. The travels of the mysterious captain Duarte Pacheco Pereira in the central Atlantic west of Cape Verde probably are more important than traditional history states. In fact a discovery which well reflects the lack of information and sources concerning the exploration efforts was the finding of the order book of a bakery, close to Lisbon's Restelo shipyard which had an order for supplying biscuits for more than a hundred long voyages (east and west) between 1490 and 1497 Template:Factdate. This comes in direct conflict with the tradional view that there were no voyages between the return of Bartolomeu Dias in 1488 and the departure of Vasco da Gama in 1497. While no direct proof exists, many historians[attribution needed], both Portuguese and non-Portuguese suspect that the Americas may have already been explored and in the first steps of colonization. Not only concerning Brazil, but also Newfoundland and Labrador, which ironically, despite being less known by the masses, are considered more plausible than those of Brazil. Among the several possible indications that could support the possible pre-Columbian exploration of Brazil are: The lack of information, presumed due to Portuguese secrecy, surrounding these voytages; The fact that the navigational routes the ships followed in order to pass the Cape of Good Hope by as early as the 1480's came to within 50 to 70 land miles of the coast of Brazil: The agreed boundary made in the Treaty of Tordesillas divided South America more or less in half and reports during the talks mentioned John II's desire to give a precise position for this line (370 leagues) and not any "round" measures.

When Columbus returned from his voyage he thought of first stopping by in Lisbon in order to claim his victory in front of King John II. King John II's only response to this was that under the treaty with Spain Columbus's discoveries lay within Portugal's sphere of influence. Before Columbus even reached Isabella of Castile, John II had already sent a letter to them threatening to send a fleet to claim it for Portugal. Spain quickly hastened to the negotiating table which took place in a small town near the Portuguese border named Tordesillas. There was also a papal representative during that occasion in order to act as mediator. The result of this would be the famous Treaty of Tordesillas. But the dividing of the world was not the main issue between the Iberian kingdoms. Isabella I of Castile and Ferdinand II of Aragon had several daughters, but only one feeble male heir — Juan. The oldest daughter, Isabella of Aragon, was married to Prince Afonso of Portugal since childhood. Afonso was John II's only son and beloved by the king. If Juan died without male heir, as was probable, Afonso would be heir not only of Portugal but also of Castile and Aragon. This threat to Castilian and Aragonese independence was very real and the Catholic kings tried every diplomatic trick to dissolve the wedding. Finally, in 1491, Afonso died in mysterious circumstances — a fall from a horse during a ride in the margin of the Tagus river. The influence of the Catholic kings in this accident was never proved but the prince was an excellent rider, his Castilian valet fled never to be seen again and after this, Isabella, the heiress, was no longer married to the enemy. John tried without success until the end of his life to legitimise Jorge, Duke of Coimbra, his illegitimate son. John II died at Alvor without leaving male issue. Because of the hatred the Portuguese nobility had for him, the hypothesis of poisoning was never ruled out. He was succeeded by his first cousin Manuel I. The nickname the Perfect Prince is a late description and refers to Niccolò Machiavelli's work The Prince. John II is considered to have lived his life exactly according to the writer's idea of a perfect prince. To his contemporaries, John II was known as the Tyrant.

-------------------- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_II_of_Portugal -------------------- See:

  1. http://www.andinia.com/articles/leaders_and_leadership/a06132.shtml
  2. http://trees.ancestry.com/tree/25067072/person/12793151519
  3. http://pt.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jo%C3%A3o_II_de_Portugal
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João II o Príncipe Perfeito, rei de Portugal's Timeline

1455
May 5, 1455
Lisbon, Lisbon, Portugal
1471
January, 1471
Age 15
1475
May 18, 1475
Age 20
Lisbon, Portugal
1481
August 21, 1481
Age 26
Abrantes, Santarem, Portugal
1483
1483
Age 27
1485
1485
Age 29
1495
October 25, 1495
Age 40
Alvor, Portimão, Faro, Portugal
????
????
Batalha, Leiria, Portugal