Gonçalo de Amarante

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Gonçalo de Amarante
São Gonçalo de Amarante, século XVII-XVIII, escola portuguesa.png
Born 1187
Arriconha, Tagilde, Vizela, Portugal
Died 10 January 1259 (aged 71)
Amarante, Portugal
Venerated in Roman Catholic Church
Beatified 16 September 1561, Saint Peter's Basilica, Papal States by Pope Pius IV
Feast 10 January
Attributes Dominican habit
Patronage Amarante

Blessed Gonçalo de Amarante (1187 - 10 January 1259) was a Portuguese Roman Catholic priest and a professed member from the Order of Preachers.[1] He became a Dominican friar and hermit after his return from a long pilgrimage that took him to both Rome and to Jerusalem.[2]

His beatification received approval in 1561 under Pope Pius IV.


Gonçalo was born in 1187 in Portugal to nobles. It was said at his baptism he fixed his intense gaze upon the Crucifix as he was being carried to the baptismal font.[1]

He was devoted to Jesus Christ in his childhood and decided to become a priest. He was later ordained as such after the successful completion of his studies and distributed his great wealth to his nephews.[1] The new priest spent time in his parish of Saint Paio and took time off on one occasion to go to visit Rome and Jerusalem while leaving his priest nephew in charge of his parish. It was held that he returned from the pilgrimage after just over a decade.[2] He visited the tombs of Saint Peter and Saint Paul before going to Jerusalem via ship.

Gonçalo returned to find that austere measures he now upheld in his life were something that his nephew did welcome and who set a dog upon him while viewing him as nothing more than a vagrant. Discernment led Gonçalo to the Order of Preachers to which he was admitted into and he was allowed to live as a hermit who was in the service of his local people. He built a bridge himself over the Tâmega River.[1][2]

He died in 1259.


The so-called "Bolos de São Gonçalo" are an icon of fertility, associated with Amarante. The reason for the association with the name of Gonçalo is disputed and obscure.


Pope Pius IV beatified him on 16 September 1561.

The late priest is considered to be quite popular in Brazil and has several localities named after him such as São Gonçalo do Amarante.


  1. ^ a b c d "Blessed Gonzalo de Amarante". Saints SQPN. 15 January 2011. Retrieved 13 October 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c "Blessed Gundislavo Amarante". Santi e Beati. Retrieved 13 October 2016. 

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