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Cradle of Kings: Guimarães


For the Portuguese peopleGuimarães is a very special place, for it was in a field close to the walls of its castle that King D. Afonso Henriques won the Battle of São Mamede, on the 24th of June 1128. By emerging victorious from this struggle against his mother, Afonso Henriques began the process that would lead to the foundation of the kingdom of Portugal, of which he was to become the first king (and one of the greatest).



Today the Colina Sagrada (Sacred Hill) is still crowned by Guimarães Castle, itself full of so many royal memories, as well as the small Romanesque chapel of São Miguel, where Afonso Henriques was baptized in the fountain that can still be seen inside. In an interpretation created by the sculptor Soares dos Reis (1834), an imposing statue placed further down the hill makes it possible for us to imagine both the face and the courage features of the first Portuguese king.


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