War of Independence. – During 24 years (1641-1665) the Portuguese nation defended its autonomy, both by repelling enemy attacks, by going on the offensive and invading Spanish territory, and finally by carrying out diplomatic action in foreign courts. He had France and England as allies: the Richelieu favored the Portuguese movement, as it tended to weaken the Habsburgs in Spain, and committed France not to conclude peace with Spain if the independence of Portugal was not recognized.. However, much of the nobility was linked to the Spanish government: as early as 1641 a conspiracy was discovered, led by the Marquis of Vila Real, the Count of Armamar and the Archbishop of Braga, to assassinate the king and hand the country over to Spain. The Vila Real and the Armamar were beheaded, the archbishop died in prison. The following year, the secretary of state Francesco di Lucena was beheaded, whom the nobility hated and accused of connivance with the government of Philip IV, which however was not proven. In 1646 a certain Domenico Leite, an assassin who had served the Spanish government to assassinate the king on the occasion of the Corpus Domini procession, was likewise executed.
The war on the borders at first proceeded sluggishly, as Philip IV was engaged in the Catalan revolt and the war in Flanders. In 1644 the first pitched battle took place, with the victory achieved in Montijo by Matteo de Albuquerque, who had invaded the Spanish territory. In the colonies, Mozambique and Macao declared themselves against the Spanish government; Angola, already occupied by the Dutch, was taken over by the Portuguese Salvatore Correia; in Brazil, the colonists waged the fight against the Dutch, who, after various clashes, definitively abandoned the country in 1654. While France and England had recognized from the beginning the independence of the Portuguese kingdom, the pope for many years refused recognition, due to the influence of the ambassadors of Spain. The ambassador of Portugal, the bishop of Lamego,
According to DISEASESLEARNING.COM, the war of independence continued during the reign of Alfonso VI (1656-1668), assuming larger proportions. The valiant minister Count de Castelo Melhor garnished the borders, organized strong armies, to which troops were added, following a recent treaty, from England, and French and German mercenaries. The command was entrusted to Marshal Schomberg, hired in France by the regent Luiza de Guzman. The victories followed one another: in Elvas (1659) against Luis de Haro, Prime Minister of Spain, at Amexial (1663) against John of Austria, natural son of Philip IV, at Castelo Rodrigo (1664) against the Duke of Ossuna, in Montes Claros (1665) against the Marquis of Caracena. In these campaigns the Portuguese generals were the Marquis of Marialva, Sancho Manuel count of Vila Flor and Pietro Giacomo Magalhães. L’ English alliance had been obtained through the marriage of Catherine of Braganza, daughter of John IV, with Charles II of England, bringing the bride as a dowry Tangier, the island of Bombaim and a fortress in Ceylon; moreover, Portugal undertook to pay an annual contribution in exchange for a corps of veteran soldiers of the English Revolution. The peace treaty between Portugal and Spain (v.lisbon: The Treaty of Lisbon) was signed only in 1668.
Palace conspiracy and deposition of Alfonso VI. – In 1666 Alfonso VI married a daughter of the Duke of Nemours, Maria Francesca di Savoia (Mademoiselle d’Aumale), but the following year she left the court and retired to a convent, declaring that she did not want to live with an incapacitated husband at marriage. The king was a deranged, feeble, epileptic, and, it seems, genuinely incapacitated being; however, it turned out that the queen had fallen in love with her brother-in-law, the infant Pietro. The enemies of the king and the minister Castelo Melhor plotted a conspiracy, which began with the scandalous nullity trial brought by the queen against the king; a palace revolt led by the infant Pietro later broke out, and the king, forced to renounce his rights, was sent to the Terceira Island of the Azores, and Pietro, married to his brother’s ex-wife, he assumed the government as regent until the death of Alfonso (1683), then (1683-1706) as king; during his reign the gold mines of Brazil were discovered, and the agriculture and trade of that colony developed; huge revenues came to the crown from Brazilian gold and diamonds. Peter II intervened in the war of succession of Spain, first in favor of Philip of Anjou, then of the Archduke Charles, who came to Portugal. The Portuguese territory was invaded by the Spaniards in 1704, but in 1705 the Portuguese army, having gone on the offensive and obtained a series of victories, entered Madrid. The king himself concluded the treaty of Methuen with England (v.). who came to Portugal. The Portuguese territory was invaded by the Spaniards in 1704, but in 1705 the Portuguese army, having gone on the offensive and obtained a series of victories, entered Madrid. The king himself concluded the treaty of Methuen with England (v.). who came to Portugal. The Portuguese territory was invaded by the Spaniards in 1704, but in 1705 the Portuguese army, having gone on the offensive and obtained a series of victories, entered Madrid. The king himself concluded the treaty of Methuen with England (v.).