Marquis of Vila Real

Marquis of Vila Real (in Portuguese Marquês de Vila Real) was a Portuguese title of nobility created by a royal decree, dated from 1 March 1489, by King John II of Portugal, and granted to Dom Pedro de Menezes, also known as Peter II of Menezes, 3rd Count of Vila Real.

The Coat of Arms of the Marquis of Vila Real.

The House of Vila Real was the most powerful aristocratic House in Portugal, during the 16th and 17th centuries, after the Dukes of Braganza and the Dukes of Aveiro.

To reward their support during the 1580 Portuguese succession crisis, the Spanish Habsburgs granted this House new titles (Duke of Vila Real and Duke of Caminha). However, all this wealth was confiscated and Miguel Luís II, 2nd Duke of Caminha, was executed for high treason, by King John IV of Portugal instructions, for supporting the right of the Spanish Habsburg Kings to the Portuguese throne after the revolution of 1640.

List of the Marquesses of Vila RealEdit

  1. Pedro de Menezes, 1st Marquis of Vila Real (1425–1499), also known as Peter II of Menezes, 3rd Count of Vila Real and 7th Count of Ourém;
  2. Fernando de Menezes, 2nd Marquis of Vila Real (1463- ? ), also known as Ferdinand II of Menezes, 4th Count of Vila Real;
  3. Pedro de Menezes, 3rd Marquis of Vila Real (1486- ? ), also known as Peter III of Meneses, 5th Count of Vila Real;
  4. Miguel de Menezes, 4th Marquis of Vila Real (1520- ? ), also known as Michael I of Menezes, 6th Count of Vila Real;
  5. Manuel de Meneses, 5th Marquis of Vila Real (1530- ? ), also known as Manuel of Menezes, 1st Duke of Vila Real and 7th Count of Vila Real;
  6. Miguel Luís, 6th Marquis of Vila Real (1565–1637), also known as Michael II of Menezes, 1st Duke of Caminha and 8th Count of Vila Real;
  7. Luis de Noronha e Meneses, 7th Marquis of Vila Real (1570-1641), also known as Louis of Menezes, 9th Count of Vila Real.

Genealogical summaryEdit

The House of Vila Real had their origins in Dom Pedro de Menezes, also known as Peter I of Menezes, 1st Count of Vila Real, 2nd Count of Viana (do Alentejo) and 1st Governor of Ceuta after the Portuguese conquest, in 1415. However the Counts, later Marquesses, have royal ancestry (both Portuguese and Spanish), once they descended from King Ferdinand I of Portugal and from King Henry II of Castile.

K.= King
C.= Count/Countess
M.= Marquess
Peter I
(1320–1367)
K.of Portugal
Henry II
(1333–1379)
K.of Castile
Ferdinand I
(1345–1383)
K.of Portugal
John I
(1357–1433)
K.of Portugal
PETER I of Menezes
(1350–1437)
1st.C.of Vila Real (1424)
Alphonso Enriquez
(1350–1395)
C.of Noreña y Gijón
(in Castile)
Isabel of Portugal
(1364–1435)
Duarte I
(1391–1438)
K.of Portugal
BEATRICE of Menezes
(1400-c.1460)
2nd.C.of Vila Real
FERDINAND I of Noronha
(1380-1460)
2nd.C.of Vila Real
Royal House of Portugal
PETER II of Menezes
(1425–1499)
3rd.C.of Vila Real
1st.M.of Vila Real
House of Vila Real

The Marquises of Villa Real (Spanish Title)Edit

When the 7th Marquis of Vila Real, along with his son the Duke of Caminha, was executed in Portugal for high treason in 1641, his daughter, Beatrice of Menezes, married to the Spanish Count of Medellin, remained in Spain.

To reward her fidelity towards the Spanish Habsburgs, King Philip IV of Spain gave her, the 23 March 1660, the title of Marquise of Villa Real (Spanish spelling) as a Spanish title, included today among the titles of the House of Medinaceli.

Beatrice of Menezes never returned to her homeland and this title was never recognized in Portugal.

Marquises of Villa Real (1660-)Edit

Other TitlesEdit

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit

BibliographyEdit

”Nobreza de Portugal e do Brasil" – Vol. III, pages 523/528. Published by Zairol Lda., Lisbon 1989.