João Manuel, Bishop of Guarda

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Monument at Igreja do Carmo
One of the gravestones at Igreja do Carmo, where João Manuel is buried.

João Manuel de Vilhena (Lisbon, 1416–1476) was a religious Carmelite, Bishop of Ceuta (1443-1459) and Bishop of Guarda (1459-1476).

He was a bastard son of Edward of Portugal[1] and Joana Manuel de Vilhena, great-granddaughter of Juan Manuel, Prince of Villena. He joined the Carmelites, in 1441 to become provincial of the Order in Portugal.[1] He was made titular Bishop of Tiberias at the same time by Pope Eugene IV.[2] He was also the ambassador to Hungary.[1]

In 1443, he was appointed Bishop of Ceuta[2] and primate of Africa. In 1450, he became chaplain to King Afonso V of Portugal,[1] his half-brother. Finally, in 1459, he was appointed Bishop of Guarda,[1] a town in which he never actually lived.[2]

From a relationship he had with a Justa Rodrigues, he had two sons, who served Alfonso V and John II of Portugal during their reigns:[2] João Manuel (1466-1500), mayor of Santarém, and Nuno Manuel (1469- after 1500), Lord of Salvaterra de Magos.

He is buried at the Carmo Church (Portuguese: Igreja do Carmo) located at the Carmo Convent (Portuguese: Convento da Ordem do Carmo), a medieval convent later ruined in the 1755 Lisbon Earthquake.


  1. ^ a b c d e Carvalho, Jose dos Santos (1965). Iconografia e simbólica do Políptico de São Vicente de Fora [Iconography and symbolic of the polyptych of Sao Vicente de Fora] (in Portuguese). Lisboa: Published by the author. 47 — BISPO DE CEUTA D. FREI JOÃO MANUEL. OCLC 12809235. Archived from the original on date unknown. Retrieved 15 December 2011. "Bishop of Ceuta D. FRIAR JOÃO MANUEL: Natural son of King Duarte, Provincial of the Order of Caramel, graduated in Theology; [...] great preacher, glorious combatant in an attempt to take Tangier, two times ambassador to Pope Eugene IV; Ambassador to Hungary, born about 1406. Note: Future bishop of Guarda and chaplain-general of his brother King Afonso V." 
  2. ^ a b c d Nunes, João (7 December 2011). "REIS E RAINHAS DE PORTUGAL" [KINGS AND QUEENS OF PORTUGAL] (in Portuguese). Retrieved 15 December 2011. "D. John Manuel, was born on a date prior to 1420, and died in late 1476 and was buried in the Carmo Church in Lisbon. It was this religious order, where in 1441 he served as provincial and received the title of bishop of Tiberias. In the year 1443, when the vacancy of the bishopric of Ceuta, was provided this office, immediately after getting the title primate of Africa. In 1450 he was chaplain-general of D. Afonso V, and nine years later, Bishop of Guarda, the city where they never lived. He left two sons, D. John Manuel and D. Nuno Manuel, who had great authority at the end of the reign of King Afonso V and time of D. John II." 


Preceded by
Aimar d'Aurillac
Episcopal Coat of Arms
Bishop of Ceuta

Succeeded by
Alvaro de Évora
Preceded by
Louis of Guarda
Episcopal Coat of Arms
Bishop of Guarda

Succeeded by
João Afonso Ferraz