The Royal Arms. The Order of Christ.
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The Armillary Sphere. Portuguese Flags. The Portuguese Colonial Empire. Back to Portugal. The Portuguese Seaborne Empire was the first global commercial empire in history. It was the earliest and longest lived of the European colonial empires, spanning almost six centuries, from the capture of Ceuta in to the handover of Macau in Portuguese explorers began exploring the coast of Africa in , leveraging the latest developments in navigation, cartography and maritime technology such as the caravel, in order that they might find a sea route to the source of the lucrative spice trade.
Over the following decades, Portuguese sailors continued to explore the coasts and islands of East Asia, establishing forts and trading posts as they went. By , a string of outposts connected Lisbon to Nagasaki: the empire had become truly global, and in the process brought great wealth to Portugal.
The Dutch, at war with the Spaniards and consequently also with the Portuguese after , were the first to challenge Portuguese hegemony.
The portuguese seaborne empire pdf reader
They were joined by the English and French during the 17th century. Less organised, and with a smaller population to draw on, Portugal was unable to defend its position, and so the empire began its long and gradual decline. The loss of Brazil in , by then Portugal's largest and most profitable colony, at a time when independence movements were sweeping the Americas, was a blow from which Portugal and its empire would never recover.
The Scramble for Africa which began in the late 19th century left Portugal with a handful of colonies on the continent.
After World War II, Portugal's right-wing military dictator, Salazar, desperately tried to keep the Portuguese Empire intact at a time when other European countries were beginning to withdraw from their colonies. In the handful of Portuguese troops garrisoned in Goa were unable to prevent Indian troops marching into the colony, but Salazar began a long and bloody war to quell anticolonialist forces in the African colonies.
The unpopular war lasted until the overthrow of the Portuguese regime in The new government immediately changed policy and recognised the independence of all its colonies, including East Timor, save for Macau, which was eventually returned to China in , marking the end of the Portuguese overseas empire.
In the Portuguese Seaborne Empire the Order of Christ exercized certain sovereign rights under the patronage of the king of Portugal. Thus, civil and ecclesiastical power were indissolubily united in its administration.
The Portuguese patronage or Padroado can be loosely defined as a combination of the rights, privileges and duties granted by the Papacy to the Crown of Portugal as patron of the Roman Catholic missions and ecclesiastical establishments in vast regions of Africa, of Asia, and in Brazil. In so far as Portugal was concerned, many of these ecclesiastical privileges had originally been granted to the Order of Christ. The Order of Christ was involved with Henry's expeditions of discovery. Henry invested a considerable part of the Order's revenue in the Discoveries.
The implications are that brothers of the Order colonised Madeira and the Canaries in , and then the Azores in After the first profitable expeditions - from onwards - African goods filled Lisbon's markets and swelled the coffers of the order of Christ.
Trading posts were established, defended by the brethren, while the Templar's red cross continued to sail south. The Order of Christ grew steadily richer.
Henry obtained the Cape Verde islands, and his brethren introduced sugar to their Madeira estates. In Pope Nicholas V recognised the claims of Afonso V to all newly discovered lands on or near the west coast of Africa and forbade all Christians to visit them without the permission of the King of Portugal. In , Calixtus III confirmed this in the bull Inter Caetera , and granted to the Order of Christ spiritual jurisdiction over all the 'islands, towns, ports, countries and states, from the Capes of Bojador and Nao, throughout all Guinea, and beyond that southern region as far as the Indies.
All these regions were declared nullius diocesis belonging to no diocese. The governors and directors of the order immediately after Henry's death were:.
Instead Manuel sought the other two masterships for himself. He obtained in the patronage of the masterships of all three orders as soon as the masterships became vacant. In Manuel called a general chapter of the order to reform the order's rule.
Manuel created 37 new commanderies for those living and serving in North Africa. In a series of bulls beginning in and ending in , Pope Leo X granted permission to fund many more commanderies. By the end of King Manuel's reign the order possessed commanderies, in Portugal, Africa and the Indies.
The Order was divided into two branches, probably in - one religious under the Pope, and one civil, under the king, as they remain today.
They acted as if the overseas bishops and clergy were, in many ways, simple functionaries of the state, like viceroyas or governors.
They gave them orders without reference to Rome which was their nominal overlord, controlled their activities, and often legislated in matters ecclesiastical. They did the same with their provincials or acting heads of the religious orders working in the territories of the Padroado. They refused to recognize the validity of any Papal Briefs, Bulls or Provisions which had not been approved by the Portuguese Crown and registered with the Regium Placet in the royal chancery. The Colonial Empire after The Constitution of 29 of Aprtil stipulates that the territory of the Kingdom of Portugal and Algarves consists of.
The amendment on the Constitution of 5 of July , provides for a special legislative status to the provinces overseas:. In the Portuguese Seaborne Empire we meet insignia of different kinds:. First: The royal coat of arms. Second: The cross of the Order of Christ. Third: The emblem of the Portuguese Empire. These insignia were combined in different ways which will be described in the following sections. As the king of Portugal was the patron of the Order of Christ, the royal arms were used in the Portuguese settlements in Africa, the Indies and America.
We meet the royal arms always in the crowned version because the king did not excercise his military powers in the settlements but only his administrative powers. The royal arms in the 15th century were the well known arms with the five escutcheons, the cross of the Order of Aviso and the bordure with the castles. They were crowned with a crown of five leaves and four pearls. In the cross of the order of Aviso was left out. A main change occurred in when the coat of arms of Portugal was incorporated into the royal coat of arms of the spanish Habsburg kings.
After the regaining of sovereignty in the ancient royal coat of arms was readopted unchanged. The crown on top was augmented into a modern royal crown with five leaves, four pearls and five hoops. The royal arms were changed by royal decree of 13th of May This version consisted of an armillary-sphere for Brazil, charged with the ancient arms of Portugal and crowned with the royal crown.
These arms were abandoned in The royal arms disappeared after the revolution of They were replaced by the coat of arms of the republic of Portugal. The inscription in Portuguese on the monument reads:.
It is: Argent, a cross of five escutcheons Azure, each charged with five roundles Argent in saltire, placed on the cross of the Order of Aviso andd surrounded by a bordure Gules, charged with seven castles Or.
The crown is a royal crown of five fleurons and four pearls. The die is surmounted by the latin cross patonce which is the symbol of the religious branch of the Order of Christ. Foto H. The knights of the predecessor of the Order of Christ, the Order of the Temple, wore after a white cloak, from for the noble knights stitched with a red cross.
Certain sources show the cross as a greek cross or crux quadrata , others show it as a latin cross.
On a map of Jerusalem, now in the Royal Library in The Hague, a knight of the Order is shown with a greek cross on his pennon and a latin cross on his shield. The two crosses, the latin cross symbolizing the religious power of the Order and the greek cross its temporal power, were maintained for its successor, the Portuguese Order of Christ.
The Order of Christ was founded in by King Denis as the successor of the Order of the Temple, which was dissolved in The new order received the same statutes and management of the goods and vassals of this order. The originally purely spiritual order gradually became more secular. Both crosses were charged with another, white, cross for difference with the imperial arms of Portugal.
This last was a red cross on a white field because Portugal was since de jure a vassal of the Holy See.
The Portuguese Seaborne Empire, 1415-1825
Foto NN, Internet. The tomb of Henry the Navigator in the monastery church of Batalha.
Henry, who was duke of Viseu and 3rd son of Philippa of Lancaster, was made the th Knight of the Garter in On the arms of the Order of Christ is a crown similar to the crown on the personal arms of Prince Henry, duke of Viseu. This means that the arms on the tomb are the professional arms of the Grandmaster or Governor of the Order who had the rank of a duke. Towards the end of the 15th century the form of the cross had evoluated to a very pronounced cross potent with triangular crossbeams.
In this form the cross was depicted on the sails of the caravels of Cabral and Vasco da Gama on their expeditions to Brazil and the Indies. On flags the cross was depicted on a square white cloth. From about the equilateral version of the cross was reserved for the royal branch of the Order.
Dom Manuel I. With the grandmastership of Dom Manuel a new coat of arms appears in close association with the Portuguese possessions in Africa and the Indies. Maybe this coat of arms replaced the Grandmasters coat of arms with the cross of the Order.
It is very likely that Dom Manuel used this coat of arms as his arms in his quality of a Grandmaster of the Order. Deutsches Historisches Museum, Berlin. On the front-side is a crowned coat of arms with the Portuguese quinas : a cross of five blue escutcheons charged with a saltire of five white roundels.
Portuguese Seaborne Empire
If the pillar was ever crowned with the cross of the Order of Christ, this has now disappeared. The coat of arms on the pillar poses some problems because they are not the royal arms. Very likely it is the coat of arms of D.