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tugal was involved in a dispute with his son-in-law Ferdinand, and invading his dominions, made himself master of two strong places in Galicia, in which he put garrisons. Elated with this success, next year he invested Badajos with a numerous army, on the news of which Ferdinand hastened to its relief. Its surrender, however, had taken place before he could come in sight of it, which irritated Ferdinand so much, that he determined to besiege his antagonist in his newly acquired conquest.
Don Alonzo perceiving this, endeavoured to frustrate his aims, by drawing out his forces into the open field. Though now upwards of seventy years of age, he mounted his horse with juvenile alacrity, and pushing forward at the head of his troops with too great impetuosity, he struck his leg against one of the bolts of the city gate with such force, that the bone was shattered to pieces. This accident produced inconceivable confusion among the Portuguese, in consequence of which they were ignominiously beaten, and their king taken prisoner.
Alonzo, suffering with pain and mortified with disgrace, was ready to anticipate the worst; but the king of Leon, his son-in-law, evinced a greatness of mind on this occasion that reflects a lustre on his name. Towards his unfortunate father-in-law he behaved with filial respect and affection; conjured him to lay aside all thoughts of business, and attend only to his cure; and, in order to enforce his advice, declared that he wished nothing more than that everything might be restored to the same state it was in before the war, and that in future their peace
tageously employed against the infidels, who remained indifferent spectators of the issue of 18 and friendship might be uninterrupted by feuds or disturbed by jealousies.
Thiş, generosity sensibly affected the aged monarch, and he readily acquiesced in the proposal; but, impatient under restraint, he set out for his own dominions before his cure was completed, and in consequence was lame for the remainder of his life.' This, however, did not abate his military ardour: his courage trans sported him into the field whenever he was called by his own glory or the interest of his subjects; and, when actively engaged, he seemed to forget the effects of accident or of age.
The pretensions of the king of Leon to receive the homage of his Portuguese majesty for the possession of that kingdom, though they bad for some time laid dormant, were not obliterated. Towards the close of Alonzo's life,
an opportunity seemed to present itself of getting totally rid of this unpleasant claim.
quarrel arose between the king of Leon and his nephew, Don Alonzo king of Castile. The latter craved the assistance of Portugal, which was readily acceded; but Ferdinand receiving intelligence that Don Sancho, the king's eldest son, was advancing towards Ciudad Rodrigo, he assembled his troops with amazing celerity, and, falling upon him unexpectedly, gave him a total defeat. Understanding, however, that Don Sancho though beaten was not humbled, he sent him a message, purporting that the forces he was collecting wɔuld be most advan
This advice was not lost on Don Sancho, who, after making some feints to amuse the enemy, suddenly burst into Andalusia, and penetrated as far as the suburbs of Seville. The Moors assembling their troops endeavoured to cut off his retreat, but Sancho having reached a strong camp, gave his wearied soldiers a little time to repose, and then drew them out, and offered battle. The Moors accepted the challenge, but were entirely defeated; and the prince of Portugal returned into his paternal dominions, laden with plunder.
After these transactions, the fortune of the war presents nothing remarkable on either side for some years ; till Joseph king of Morocco,
A. D. having transported multitudes of men
1184. from Barbary, carried all before him, as far as the Tayo.
He next appeared before the city of Santaren ; but his men being harassed and worn out with reiterated attacks on the place, were in that state faced by the Portuguese army, assisted by Ferdinand of Leon, when the infidels were entirely defeated, and their king killed in the action. This victory once more delivered the Portuguese from fear of an enemy, and the king improved the pause, by strengthening his frontiers and regulating his internal government. While thus employed, Alonzo
A.D. departed this life in the 76th
1185. age, and left his kingdom to his son Don Sancho I. at that time thirty-one years,
old. Before Sancho ascended the throne, he was of a restless and warlike disposition; but no sooner did he assume the reins of government, than he withdrew his attention from conquest, and employed every energy of his mind in securing,
beautifying, and enriching his kingdom. By strenuously pursuing this plan for a few years, he gave a new aspect to Portugal, and procured himself the glorious title of " The restorer of cities, and father of his country.”
A fleetof adventurers, chiefly consisting A.D.
of English, bound for the Holy Land, 1189.
having entered the river Tagus, Sancho importuned them to assirt him in attacking the city of Silves in Algarve. Accordingly, having united forces, the place was easily reduced, and the English, rewarded with plunder, pursued their destination. The Moors, however, having again invaded Portugal, the city several times changed masters; when Sancho, sensible of the difficulty of retaining it, caused it to be demolished. His last enterprise was the reduction A. D.
of Elvas ; soon after which he died, with · 1212.
the reputation of being one of the most
patriotic princes that ever swayed the sceptre of Portugal. Though rather liberal than avaricious, he left a vast sum of money in the treasury. He was interred in the cathedral of Coimbra ; and after his body had lain 400 years, it was taken up to be placed in a new tomb, and found to have suffered no corruption.
Don Alonzo succeeded his father at the age of 27, and is distinguished in the history of his country by the surname of the Fat. His reign presents but few memorable events.
Its com mencement was popular, but he was soon embroiled in family feuds, which disturbed the tranquillity of his government, till the thunders of the Vatican brought all parties to an accommodation. It was not long, however, before the forced
calm was changed by an irruption of the Moors. In crder to repel them, he availed him. self of a band of crusaders, consisting of Germans and Flemings, as his predecessors had formerly done. The crosses proceeded by sea to block up Alcaçar-do-Sal, while the Portuguese army marched thither, and invested it by land. The Moors strained every nerve to save the place : a furious battle was fought, and the infidels experienced a complete defeat, with the loss of several chiefs. The Portuguese writers unanimously affirm, that the banner of the cross was seen displayed by angels, and ascribe their success to divine interposition. The fortress
A.D. surrendered, and was bestowed on the
1217. order of St. James.
No sooner, however, were the Moors driven back than civil dissensions broke out in Portugal, which involved equally the clergy and the laity. The former were dissatisfied that they were taxed in common with the rest of their fellow-subjects by royal authority, and appealed to Rome. The holy see fulminated an excommunication against Alonzo II. and put his kingdom under an interdict. While matters remained in this confusion the king died, in the 12th
A. D. year of his reign, and was meanly buried
1223. in the conventual church of Alcobaça.
Sancho II. was only twenty years old at the time of his father's demise. He was a prince of a wild disposition; and, in order to emancipate himself from the distresses which had embittered the last years of his father's life, he proposed a reference of all matters in dispute to the arbitration of ecclesiastics of established character;