Biography of Conde de Portugal Enrique de Borgoña o Capeto (1057-1112)

Count of Portugal of French origin born in Dijon (France) towards 1057 and died at Astorga to 24 April 1112. Also known as Enrique Capeto. He/She was the fourth son of Enrique of Burgundy, grandson of the Burgundian Duke Roberto I, and nephew of St. Hugo, Abbot of Cluny. Together with his brother Eudes I (heir to the title) and his cousin Raymond of Burgundy marched to the Iberian Peninsula to fight the Muslims as a crusader. For his services, to 1095 the King of Castile Alfonso VI granted him the hand of his natural daughter Teresa (taken with Jimena Núñez) and granted him the County of Portugal and Coimbra (approximately between the rivers Douro and Minho), where he/she had fought in its southern border, and which had been under the administration of Raimundo (together with Galicia). It seems that between 1095 and 1097 only had the direct Government of the territories of Porto, Braga, Coimbra and Santarem; would not be until after this date that his authority would have spread over the entire territory and was titled eat Portugalensis ('count of Portugal'; after the death of Alfonso VI 1109 would use of Henricus Dei gratia comes et totius Portugalensie dominus: ' Henry by the grace of God count and Lord of all Portugal'). In 1096, to ensure fidelity and help cities and their population, he/she had granted fueros to Guimarães and Panóias Constantim.

To 1100 he/she fought again against the Almoravids; between 1101 and 1103 was outside Portugal, marching to Rome with the Archbishop of Braga to defend the rights of this site. It is possible that in 1102 continue the journey to the Holy Land, but to the frustrase a project of the crusade of Emperor Henry IV would have returned to Portugal. Maybe also these years the Abbot of Cluny met with his uncle. During his absence, a small Portuguese army under the command of Soeiro Fromarigues was defeated by the Muslims in the Tagus River. By this time, he/she completed the introduction of the Roman Liturgy, not without resistance from the Mozarabs. But over time the native clergy was favorable to the autonomist project enriquinas, as well as the nobility was already. In 1104 was at Sahagún (León), where he/she met his cousin Raimundo de Borgoña, by signing a Treaty of Alliance (Covenant estate) by which Henry acknowledged Raimundo absolute heir of Alfonso VI, in Exchange for Toledo (or Galicia) and part of the real treasures. It does not seem to have references to the situation of Portugal. The following Enrique surely spent years in Portugal.

In 1107 died Raimundo, and the following year the infante Sancho, the only son of Alfonso VI. The same monarch was on the verge of death also, and Alfonso Raimúndez (Alfonso VII), the son of Raymond and his wife Urraca (daughter of the King), was a little boy; Enrique was in excellent political position, given that it was the only man of the older family. However, Alfonso VI finally expel him Court while aware of the reasons; the Government of Portugal did not drop you. Enrique, then tried to get new props in France and also to sustain the cause of Alfonso Raimúndez above his mother Urraca. The chronicler Lucas of Tuy (Tudense) attributes to him the idea to Urraca married Alfonso I the Battler, King of Aragon (made in 1109). Soon his attention was claimed by the reconquista, having to fight (and win) the Muslims in Sintra; then he/she went to Coimbra, donating to this diocese the monastery of Lorvão. He/She already acted as independent Lord.

In January of 1110 met with Alfonso the Battler in Valtierra (Navarra); in October fought both with victory in the field of spine against the troops of Urraca (she and Alfonso were already at odds). In the month of November Enrique joined the side of Urraca after interviewing her and obtain certain promises. Thus, immediately besieged to Alfonso the Battler in Penafiel until the Countess Teresa, the wife of Henry, convinced him to abandon a magpie as conditions of the Alliance should not be set accurately. In 1111 January Conference of Palencia with Magpie seemed to reconcile them, but Henry did not trust the Queen (that likewise in March made peace with her husband) and besieged it in Sahagún with the help of supporters of Alfonso Raimúndez. Internal tensions and further Muslim attacks (loss of Santarém) was forced to return to Portugal; from Coimbra he/she granted some privileges to strengthen resilience in some territories. He/She continued then intriguing in Castilian matters for own benefit, extending its influence over Zamora and Astorga. In this city died, shortly after the proclamation of Alfonso Raimúndez as King jointly with his mother. Your body fuetrasladado Braga, and there buried. Had with Teresa Alfonso Enríquez (1109), which would later become the first King of Portuguese as Alfonso I, and three daughters: Sancha, (wife of count Fernando Mendes), Urraca (conde Bermudo Pérez de Traba woman) and Teresa (married to Sancho Nunes de Barbosa).


SERRAO, J. Dictionary of history of Portugal. Vol. 3. (Lisbon: Livraria Figueirinhas, 1985).

SOARES, T. S. Or governo do Conde Henrique de Borgonha. Sep. Rev. Port. History, 14. (Coimbra, Institute of historical studies: 1975).

Links on the Internet ; Page with a biography about Enrique of Burgundy (in Portuguese).