History of Manueline Art - 1st semester


To understand the cultural and political context of the creation of a concept such as “art from king Manuel I’s reign”; To acknowledge this art’s connections to the international panorama of late Gothic architecture ; To know the progress of patterns in patronage and taste in the kingdom, within the final years of the 15th century and the beginning of the 16th century; To identity and characterize all different types of programmes and accomplishments comprised in the arts of king Manuel I’s reign; To understand this aesthetics as part of a specific political context and of a system destined to promote the king’s own definition of power and state; To be able to recognise and interpret correctly different programmes, from entire buildings to small decorative interventions.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Hélder Carita


Weekly - 4

Total - Available soon

Teaching language





AFONSO, L. A. (2005). Manuelino e Luso-Tropicalismo : a historiografia da arte e a construção da identidade portuguesa durante o Estado Novo. Coimbra: Almedina ; COSTA, J. P. O. (2011). D. Manuel I. Temas e Debates ; DIAS, P. (1988). A Arquitectura Manuelina. Porto: Livraria Civilização ; PEREIRA, P. (1990). A Obra Silvestre e a Esfera do Rei. Iconologia da Arquitectura Manuelina na Grande Estremadura. Coimbra: Instituto de História da Arte ; SILVA, J. C. V. (1989). O Tardo-Gótico em Portugal. A Arquitectura no Alentejo. Lisboa: Livros do Horizonte

Teaching method

Theoretical-practical lessons, with audiovisual material and the use of teaching methods and instruments, such as: texts; images and drawings. This curricular unit includes three field tryps: Batalha, Évora and Jerónimos. The study and preparation for this curricular unit shall be done through constant reading of recommended bibliography and the support of the material provided in class.

Evaluation method

Evaluation: one review + a research essay on an architectural/decorative programme, subjected to oral presentation + one written test. The review will be worth 40% and the essay 60% of the 1st Grade. If this grade is ≤14, the student will be exempt from the written test. Otherwise, the test will correspond to 50% of the 2nd Grade. Regular attendance and participation in class are also appreciated.

Subject matter

1. The “art of king Manuel I’s reign”: theoretical discussion of an artistic concept
1.1. The origin of the concept
1.2. The spread of the concept: redefinitions and new symbolic intepretations
1.3. Confrontations?: discussion on the definition of art “Manuelina” in Portuguese historiography of art throughout the 20th century
1.4. The art “Manuelina” as late gothic: the groundbreaking perspective of Mário Tavares Chicó and contemporary historians
2. The “art of king Manuel I’s reign”: material evidence
2.1. Before 1495: the churches of Conceição (Beja), Nª Srª do Pópulo (Caldas da Rainha) and Jesus de Setúbal
2.2. Mateus Fernandes at the Mosteiro da Batalha
2.3. The Alentejo and its specific architectural ‘language’
2.4. The North and the presence of spanish artists
2.5. Paradigmatic works: Convento de Cristo (Tomar), Mosteiro dos Jerónimos and Torre de Belém (Lisboa)
2.6. The mudejarismo as an iberian expression
2.7. Perfomance and ostentation of kingship: heraldry in arts


Programs where the course is taught: