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Manuel I
D. Manuel (Roque Gameiro, História da Colonização Portuguesa do Brasil, 1921).png
Reconstructed likeness by Roque Gameiro, based on the contemporary statue by Chantereine on the western portal of Jerónimos Monastery, Lisbon
King of Portugal
Reign 25 October 1495 – 13 December 1521
Acclamation 27 October 1495
Predecessor John II
Successor John III
Born 31 May 1469
Alcochete, Portugal
Died 13 December 1521(1521-12-13) (aged 52)
Lisbon, Portugal
Burial Jerónimos Monastery
Spouses
  • Isabella of Aragon
    (m. 1497; died 1498)
  • Maria of Aragon
    (m. 1500; died 1517)
  • Eleanor of Austria (m. 1518)
Issue
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  • Miguel da Paz, Prince of Portugal
  • John III of Portugal
  • Isabella, Holy Roman Empress
  • Beatrice, Duchess of Savoy
  • Louis, Duke of Beja
  • Ferdinand, Duke of Guarda
  • Cardinal-Infante Afonso of Portugal
  • Cardinal-King Henry I of Portugal
  • Edward, Duke of Guimarães
  • Maria, Duchess of Viseu
House Aviz
Father Ferdinand, Duke of Viseu
Mother Beatrice of Portugal
Religion Roman Catholicism
Signature Manuel I's signature

Manuel I ( 31 May 1469 – 13 December 1521), known as the Fortunate (Portuguese: O Venturoso), was King of Portugal from 1495 to 1521. A member of the House of Aviz, Manuel was Duke of Beja and Viseu prior to succeeding his cousin, John II of Portugal, as monarch. Manuel ruled over a period of intensive expansion of the Portuguese Empire owing to the numerous Portuguese discoveries made during his reign. His sponsorship of Vasco da Gama led to the Portuguese discovery of the sea route to India in 1498, resulting in the creation of the Portuguese India Armadas, which guaranteed Portugal's monopoly on the spice trade. Manuel began the Portuguese colonization of the Americas and Portuguese India, and oversaw the establishment of a vast trade empire across Africa and Asia.

Manuel established the Casa da Índia, a royal institution that managed Portugal's monopolies and its imperial expansion He financed numerous famed Portuguese navigators, including Pedro Álvares Cabral (who discovered Brazil), Afonso de Albuquerque (who established Portuguese hegemony in the Indian Ocean), and João Vaz Corte-Real (who discovered Newfoundland in Canada), among numerous others. The income from Portuguese trade monopolies and colonized lands made Manuel the wealthiest monarch in Europe, allowing him to be one of the great patrons of the Portuguese Renaissance, which produced many significant artistic and literary achievements. Manuel patronized numerous Portuguese intellectuals, including playwright Gil Vicente (called the father of Portuguese and Spanish theatre), physician Garcia de Orta (who pioneered tropical medicine), and mathematician Pedro Nunes (who developed the nonius and the rhumb line). The Manueline style, considered Portugal's national architecture, is named for the king.

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