05/31/1469 AD born

Manuel was the ninth child of Ferdinand, Duke of Viseu and Beatriz of Portugal. His father, Ferdinand, was the son of Edward, King of Portugal and the brother of Afonso V of Portugal, while his mother, Beatriz, was granddaughter of King John I of Portugal. In addition, his sister Eleanor of Viseu was the wife of King John II of Portugal.

Manuel grew up amidst conspiracies of the Portuguese noble families against King John II. In 1483, Fernando II, Duke of Braganza, leader of Portugal's most powerful feudal house, was executed for treason. Later, Manuel's older brother, Diogo, Duke of Viseu, was accused of leading a conspiracy against the crown and was stabbed to death in 1484 by the king himself.

Manuel thus would have had every reason to worry when he received a royal order in 1493 to present himself to the king, but his fears were groundless: John II wanted to name him heir to the throne after the death of his son Prince Afonso and the failed attempts to legitimise Jorge de Lencastre, Duke of Coimbra, his illegitimate son.

As a result of this stroke of luck, Manuel was nicknamed the Fortunate, and succeeded on John's death in 1495.

Alcochete
Lattitude: 38.75° N
Longitude: 8.9666° W
Region: Europe
Europe
Modern Day Portugal
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