Portuguese Restoration War 1640-1668

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  • Portuguese Restoration War
    • Sebastianism
      • King Sebastian was in important figure in Portuguese history similar to King Arthur
        • He died in the Battle of Alcacer Quibir in 1578
          • Sebastian was the penultimate monarch for the house of Aviz as he failed to produce an heir
          • The body of Sebastian was never recovered and some believed he had survived
            • This led to belief that he would return to liberate Portugal in its time of need
      • Sebastianism played into the hands of nobility
        • John IV had legitimacy to the throne and the increased taxes from the Spanish helped gain support from peasants
        • However it had to be moderated
          • Increased belief could have an adverse effect where his legitimacy would be undermined
            • The return of Sebastian could be more important than John to people if unchecked
        • On December 1st 1640 a Coup D'etat was launched
          • The near bloodless coup took place in Lisbon
            • 6 days later John was crowned John IV of Portugal
    • Military
      • Spain's army was overextended during the Portuguese Restoration War
        • Spain's massive empire meant that it was constantly fighting against others
        • Spain also had no fiscal income which meant that the army relied on loans which essentially saw the army privatised
          • Despite reformations to the military Spain was unable to beat Portugal successfully
            • Despite not many battles, Portugal proved to be more effective at waging war
            • Portugal wasn't trying to be an invasive force and thus had the advantage of defence
              • This is supported by Clausewitz' theory of war
      • Portugal had the benefit of preparation
        • Rebellions such as Catalonia meant that Portugal didn't initially face the brunt of the Spanish Army
          • By the time the Catalans and French had been dealt with, Portugal had gained allies and confidence
            • The Portuguese army became well trained and saw victories in major battles against the Spanish
              • This led to the point where even before Phillip IV's death, Portugal had all but secured independance
              • Major victories for Portugal
                • Ameixial, 1663
                • Elves, 1659
                • Villvicosia, 1665
    • Diplomacy
      • Spain was fighting many enemies during the Portuguese Restoration War
        • England
          • England major contributions came towards the end of the Portuguese Restoration
            • An Anglo-Portuguese Alliance was secured in 1661
              • This was after Charles II married Catherine of Braganza
                • The marriage had benefits for England as they gained free trade in the Portuguese Empire
                  • England was also given 2 million Cruzados
              • The alliance secured English support for the Portuguese after the French had ended
              • England supplied Portugal with soldiers
                • 2000 foot soldiers
                • 700 cavalry
                • Portugal also experienced the benefits of English naval power
        • France
          • Louis XIV deemed himself the protector of Portugal
            • During the time of the Portuguese Restoration France was already at war with Spain
              • Franco Spanish War, 1635-1659
              • The war with Spain meant that the bulk of Spanish forces were fighting against the French and Catalonians
            • France kept Spanish troops occupied until the English Alliance in 1661 after the French withdrew support in 1659
        • Other Rebellious States
          • Portugal maintained diplomacy with other states that rebelled from the Spanish
            • These included Catalonia and Naples
    • Causes
      • Spain had entered a period of economic decline within this period
        • Portugal however had favourable economic conditions
          • Phillip II allowed Portugal to essentially control itself, and even remained a separate entity to Spain
            • However Phillip IV's approach was different
              • Portugal's economic situation meant that it was heavily taxed
                • Portugal had to pay subsides of 200,000 Cruzados to the Spanish crown per year
                • Threats of a salt tax also strained the union
                • Taxes on fishing in 1637 led to riots that saw local authorities attacked
                  • Spanish officials taking an inventory of the Portuguese treasury also strained relationships
      • Portugal's Empire was mostly commercial
        • It was famous for the spice trade
        • However the ties to Spain meant that Spanish decisions directly affected the Portuguese Empire
          • Dutch attacks on the Portuguese Empire in the 1580's were common and were a result of hostilities between Spain and the Dutch
            • Whilst this continued into the Portuguese Restoration War, the Spaniards actions affirmed this hostility
            • The sugar trade was worth 4 million Cruzados a year to Portugal and the Dutch had disrupted this
              • There was hope that by severing ties to Spain, the stress on the sugar trade would be relieved
          • Jesuits whose population was strong in Portugal and Brazil supported the revolt
            • This was likely out of spite to the Dominicans
            • Resentments to the Spanish Inquisition were also likely still present

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