Afonso II of Portugal
Afonso II or Affonso (Archaic Portuguese), Alfonso or Alphonso (Portuguese-Galician) or Alphonsus (Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 version), nicknamed "the Fat" (Portuguese
Portuguese language
Portuguese is a Romance language that arose in the medieval Kingdom of Galicia, nowadays Galicia and Northern Portugal. The southern part of the Kingdom of Galicia became independent as the County of Portugal in 1095...

 o Gordo), third king of Portugal, was born in Coimbra
Coimbra is a city in the municipality of Coimbra in Portugal. Although it served as the nation's capital during the High Middle Ages, it is better-known for its university, the University of Coimbra, which is one of the oldest in Europe and the oldest academic institution in the...

 on 23 April 1185 and died on 25 March 1223 in the same city. He was the second but eldest surviving son of Sancho I of Portugal
Sancho I of Portugal
Sancho I , nicknamed the Populator , second monarch of Portugal, was born on 11 November 1154 in Coimbra and died on 26 March 1212 in the same city. He was the second but only surviving legitimate son and fourth child of Afonso I of Portugal by his wife, Maud of Savoy. Sancho succeeded his father...

 by his wife, Dulce, Infanta of Aragon
Aragon is a modern autonomous community in Spain, coextensive with the medieval Kingdom of Aragon. Located in northeastern Spain, the Aragonese autonomous community comprises three provinces : Huesca, Zaragoza, and Teruel. Its capital is Zaragoza...

. Afonso succeeded his father in 1212.

As a king, Afonso II set a different approach of government. Hitherto, his father Sancho I and his grandfather Afonso I
Afonso I of Portugal
Afonso I or Dom Afonso Henriques , more commonly known as Afonso Henriques , nicknamed "the Conqueror" , "the Founder" or "the Great" by the Portuguese, and El-Bortukali and Ibn-Arrik by the Moors whom he fought, was the first King of Portugal...

, were mostly concerned with military issues either against the neighbouring Kingdom of Castile
Kingdom of Castile
Kingdom of Castile was one of the medieval kingdoms of the Iberian Peninsula. It emerged as a political autonomous entity in the 9th century. It was called County of Castile and was held in vassalage from the Kingdom of León. Its name comes from the host of castles constructed in the region...

 or against the Moorish
The description Moors has referred to several historic and modern populations of the Maghreb region who are predominately of Berber and Arab descent. They came to conquer and rule the Iberian Peninsula for nearly 800 years. At that time they were Muslim, although earlier the people had followed...

 lands in the south. Afonso did not pursue territory enlargement policies and managed to insure peace with Castile during his reign. Despite this, some towns, like Alcácer do Sal
Alcácer do Sal
Alcácer do Sal is a municipality in Portugal, located in Setúbal District. It has a total area of and a total population of 13,624 inhabitants.-History :-Earliest settlement:...

 in 1217, were conquered from the Moors by the private initiative of noblemen. This does not mean that he was a weak or somehow cowardly man. The first years of his reign were marked instead by internal disturbances between Afonso and his brothers and sisters. The king managed to keep security within Portuguese borders only by outlawing and exiling his kin.

Since military issues were not a government priority, Afonso established the state's administration and centralized power on himself. He designed the first set of Portuguese written laws. These were mainly concerned with private property
Private property
Private property is the right of persons and firms to obtain, own, control, employ, dispose of, and bequeath land, capital, and other forms of property. Private property is distinguishable from public property, which refers to assets owned by a state, community or government rather than by...

, civil justice, and minting
Mint (coin)
A mint is an industrial facility which manufactures coins for currency.The history of mints correlates closely with the history of coins. One difference is that the history of the mint is usually closely tied to the political situation of an era...

. Afonso also sent ambassadors to European kingdoms outside the Iberian Peninsula
Iberian Peninsula
The Iberian Peninsula , sometimes called Iberia, is located in the extreme southwest of Europe and includes the modern-day sovereign states of Spain, Portugal and Andorra, as well as the British Overseas Territory of Gibraltar...

 and began amicable commercial relations with most of them.

Other reforms included the always delicate matters with the pope. In order to get the independence of Portugal recognized by Rome, his grandfather, Afonso I, had to legislate an enormous number of privileges to the Church. These eventually created a state within the state. With Portugal's position as a country firmly established, Afonso II endeavoured to weaken the power of the clergy and to apply a portion of the enormous revenues of the Roman Catholic Church
Roman Catholic Church
The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the world's largest Christian church, with over a billion members. Led by the Pope, it defines its mission as spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ, administering the sacraments and exercising charity...

 to purposes of national utility. These actions led to a serious diplomatic conflict between the pope and Portugal. After being excommunicated for his audacities by Pope Honorius III
Pope Honorius III
Pope Honorius III , previously known as Cencio Savelli, was Pope from 1216 to 1227.-Early work:He was born in Rome as son of Aimerico...

, Afonso II promised to make amends to the church, but he died in 1223 before making any serious attempts to do so.


Marriage and descendants

Afonso married Infanta Urraca of Castile, daughter of Alfonso VIIIof Castile
Alfonso VIII of Castile
Alfonso VIII , called the Noble or el de las Navas, was the King of Castile from 1158 to his death and King of Toledo. He is most remembered for his part in the Reconquista and the downfall of the Almohad Caliphate...

 and Leonora of England
Leonora of England
Eleanor of England was Queen of Castile and Toledo as wife of Alfonso VIII of Castile. She was a daughter of Henry II of England and his wife, Duchess Eleanor of Aquitaine.-Early life:...

, in 1206.
By Urraca of Castile (1186–1220; married in 1206)
Infante Sancho
Sancho II of Portugal
Sancho II , nicknamed "the Pious" and "the Caped" or "the Capuched" , , fourth King of Portugal, was the eldest son of Afonso II of Portugal by his wife, Infanta Urraca of Castile...

8 September 1207 4 January 1248 Succeeded him as Sancho II, 4th King of Portugal.
Infante Afonso
Afonso III of Portugal
Afonso III , or Affonso , Alfonso or Alphonso or Alphonsus , the Bolognian , the fifth King of Portugal and the first to use the title King of Portugal and the Algarve, from 1249...

5 May 1210 16 February 1279 Succeeded his brother Sancho as Afonso III, 5th King of Portugal.
Infanta Leonor
Leonor of Portugal, Queen of Denmark
Eleanor of Portugal was a Portuguese infanta , the only daughter of King Afonso II of Portugal and his wife Urraca of Castile. She was Queen consort of Denmark by marriage to Danish King Valdemar the Young, son of Valdemar II, in 1229....

1211 1231 Married Valdemar the Young
Valdemar the Young
Valdemar the Young was King of Denmark from 1218 until his death.Valdemar was the eldest son and co-ruler of Valdemar II of Denmark by his first wife, Dagmar of Bohemia. He did not outlive his father so was never a sole monarch. He is sometimes referred to as Valdemar III for example his...

, son of Valdemar II of Denmark
Valdemar II of Denmark
Valdemar II , called Valdemar the Victorious or Valdemar the Conqueror , was the King of Denmark from 1202 until his death in 1241. The nickname Sejr is a later invention and was not used during the King's own lifetime...

 and Margaret of Bohemia, daughter of Ottokar I of Bohemia
Ottokar I of Bohemia
-External links:...

Infante Fernando
Infante Fernando, Lord of Serpa
Infante Fernando of Portugal , or Ferdinand in English, was a Portuguese infante , son of King Afonso II of Portugal and his wife Urraca of Castile, daughter of Alfonso VIII of Castile....

a. 1217 c. 1243 Lord of Serpa
Serpa is a municipality in Portugal, in Alentejo Region, with a total area of 1104.0 km² and a total population of 16,178 inhabitants. The Guadiana River flows close to the town of Serpa....

Vicente 1219 1219  
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