is a municipality
In Portugal, municipality or concelho is the most stable subdivision of Portugal since the foundation of the country.Portugal has an entirely separate system of cities and towns. Cities and towns are located in municipalities, but often do not have the same boundaries, even if built-up is continuous...
in Portugal with a total area of 447.1 km² and a total population of 24,756 inhabitants. It contains the city Portalegre, Portugal
Portalegre is a city in Portalegre Municipality in Portalegre District, Portugal.The city proper has a population of 15,238.The municipality has an area of approximately 424 km² and is located on the border of Serra de São Mamede Natural Park...
The municipality is composed of 10 parishes, and is located in the Portalegre District.
The present Mayor is José Mata Cáceres, elected by the Social Democratic Party
The Social Democratic Party , is a centre-right liberal conservative political party in Portugal. It is commonly known by its initials, PSD; on ballot papers, its initials appear as PPD/PSD, with the first three letters coming from the party's original name, Democratic People's Party...
Its name comes from the Latin Portus Alacer (meaning "cheerful port").
The municipal holiday is 23 May.
In 2001 census
A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring and recording information about the members of a given population. It is a regularly occurring and official count of a particular population. The term is used mostly in connection with national population and housing censuses; other common...
the city of Portalegre had 15,768 inhabitants in its 2 parishes (Sé and São Lourenço). These 2 parishes plus the 8 rural parishes had a total of 25,608 inhabitants.
Portalegre was founded in the reign of Afonso III, in 1259. It was to be given to his bastard son Afonso Sanches.
In Denis I
Dinis , called the Farmer King , was the sixth King of Portugal and the Algarve. The eldest son of Afonso III of Portugal by his second wife, Beatrice of Castile and grandson of king Alfonso X of Castile , Dinis succeeded his father in 1279.-Biography:As heir to the throne, Infante Dinis was...
reign, by a foral
thumb|left|200px|Foral of Castro Verde - PortugalThe word foral derives from the Portuguese word foro, ultimately from Latin forum, equivalent to Spanish fuero, Galician foro, Catalan furs and Basque foru ....
of 18 November 1299, it was determined that Portalegre would be donated to the king himself and later to his first born and heir.
Portalegre was elevated to the status of city
A city is a relatively large and permanent settlement. Although there is no agreement on how a city is distinguished from a town within general English language meanings, many cities have a particular administrative, legal, or historical status based on local law.For example, in the U.S...
on 23 May 1550, by John III
John III , nicknamed o Piedoso , was the fifteenth King of Portugal and the Algarves. He was the son of King Manuel I and Maria of Aragon, the third daughter of King Ferdinand II of Aragon and Queen Isabella I of Castile...
. At this time, the city was regarded as an important administrative and economic centre. In the 15th century, it was already recognized for its cloth manufacturing
Manufacturing is the use of machines, tools and labor to produce goods for use or sale. The term may refer to a range of human activity, from handicraft to high tech, but is most commonly applied to industrial production, in which raw materials are transformed into finished goods on a large scale...
As it is near the frontier with Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...
it always suffered lots of invasions from foreign troops: in 1704 (during the War of the Spanish Succession
The War of the Spanish Succession was fought among several European powers, including a divided Spain, over the possible unification of the Kingdoms of Spain and France under one Bourbon monarch. As France and Spain were among the most powerful states of Europe, such a unification would have...
), it was attacked and conquered by the army of Felipe V
Philip V was King of Spain from 15 November 1700 to 15 January 1724, when he abdicated in favor of his son Louis, and from 6 September 1724, when he assumed the throne again upon his son's death, to his death.Before his reign, Philip occupied an exalted place in the royal family of France as a...
; again in 1801 during the War of the Oranges
The War of the Oranges was a brief conflict in 1801 in which Spanish forces, instigated by the government of France, and ultimately supported by the French military, invaded Portugal...
, it surrendered to the Spanish Army, this way trying to counter the French dominion. In 1847 it was occupied by forces of Spanish General Concha.
The importance of Portalegre would come to be recognized in 1859, when it became capital of the Portalegre District.
The house-museum of José Régio
José Maria dos Reis Pereira, better known by the pen name José Regio was a Portuguese writer which lived most of his life in Portalegre...
, a famous Portuguese poet, was installed in his home, in which he lived for 34 years. When Régio was accepted at the high school of Mouzinho da Silveira, in Portalegre, this place was a hostel. It was previously an annex of the convent of S. Brás, of which there are still some vestiges, namely the chapel. It also served as a headquarter when the peninsular wars were fought, but it was later named Pensão 21
José Régio rented a humble room and, as he needed more space (he collected several works of art, amongst which more than 400 representations of Christ), he would rent more space. So, as time went by, he finally became the only inhabitant of the hostel. In 1965, he sold his collection to the municipality of Portalegre with the condition of it buying his house, restore it and transform it into a museum. He lived there until he died, in 1969. The museum opened to public in 1971.
- Ribeira de Nisa
- São Julião
- São Lourenço