Trashy Royals podcast

53. King Pedro I of Portugal and Inês de Castro

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The fourteenth century was full of challenges to marital bliss, especially for nobles. Travel was complicated, especially during times of war, but royal houses still needed to cement alliances through marriage - often among woefully young princes and princesses who, again, were separated by vast distances and perhaps had never met. So it was for Portugal's young prince Pedro, born 1320. Proxy-married to Constanza Manuel, a Castillian noblewoman, the union was made so Portugal's king, Alfonso IV, could register his disdain for the ruler of Castile, King Alfonso XI. Yes, it's a little confusing. And also, there was a war on in Europe, so it would be five long years before young Constanza could safely make the journey to Portugal to meet her young husband. For Pedro, encountering his bride for the first time was an experience of fireworks and butterflies - because of the presence of her lady-in-waiting, Inês de Castro, a Galician noblewoman with whom he fell madly in love. This was obviously not an ideal situation for anyone, and while various machinations were tried to end the affair between Pedro and Inês, it was genuinely true love, with an extremely tragic and violent eventual outcome that lives on as a story of deep cultural resonance in Portugal to this day. Listen ad-free at Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

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