History - OnThisDay - May 5th. 1210 - King Alfonso III of Portugal

Alfonso was born on May 5th. 1210 in Coimbra, Portugal.


His parents were King Alfonso II  of Portugal and
Urraca of Castile.

His maternal grandparents were King Alfonso VIII of Castile
and Eleanor of England.

Alfonso had an older brother Sancho, who inherited the
Portuguese throne after his father's death.

Love and Marriage

Alfonso had married to Matilda II, Countess of Boulogne.
This couple had no children. They divorced in 1253.

The same year Alfonso remarried Beatrice of Castile. His
first wife protested this with the Pope. However the new royal
couple stayed together and they would have children.

He also had a lot of natural children.


In 1246, his brother, Sancho had a lot of conflicts with the church.
Pope Innocent IV ordered Sancho II to be removed from the throne
and replaced by his brother, Alfonso.

Sancho died on January 4th. 1248 and Alfonso was ready to take
the throne.

Alfonso III paid special attention to the middle class, composed of
merchants and small land owners.

In 1254, he held his first session of the Cortes, a general assembly
of nobility, the middle class and representatives of all municipalities.

Alfonso III founded several towns and he granted the title to many

He also took some progressive measures such as representatives of
commons and he ordered a taxation of the church.

Alfonso wanted to secure the south of Portugal and he had to
fight against the Moors. Algarve became a part of the kingdom
following the capture of Faro.


Alfonso died on February 16th. 1279.
He was buried at the Alcobaça Monastery in Portugal.

King Alfonso III of Portugal was succeeded by his son Denis.

Source picture: Wikipedia

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