Carvalho, Antônio de Albuquerque Coelho de (1655–1725)

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Carvalho, Antônio de Albuquerque Coelho de (1655–1725)

Antônio de Albuquerque Coelho de Carvalho (b. 1655; d. 25 April 1725), Portuguese colonial administrator. Born in Lisbon and baptized on 14 September 1655, Carvalho was the son of the governor of Maranhão (1667–1671) of the same name; the nephew of Feliciano Coelho de Carvalho, the first lord-proprietor of the captaincy of Camutá (also known as Cametá); the grandson of Francisco Coelho de Carvalho, first governor-general (1626–1636) of the newly established state of Maranhão and Grão-Pará; and the great-grandson of Feliciano Coelho de Carvalho, Indian fighter and governor of Paraíba in the 1590s. He accompanied his father to America, leaving Portugal in 1666 and returning in 1671. In 1678 young Carvalho returned to Maranhão to serve as capitão-mor of his family's captaincy of Camutá until 1682. That same year, he fathered by Angela de Bairros, whose parents were said to be pardos from Pernambuco, the bastard Antônio de Albuquerque Coelho (1682–1746), who later gained fame as the one-armed governor and captain-general of Macau. From 1685 to 1690 Carvalho served as governor and capitão-mor of Grão-Pará. On 17 May 1690, he became governor and captain-general of the state of Maranhão, Grão-Pará, and Rio Negro, administering that vast territory until 1701.

After returning to Portugal, Carvalho served in the War of Spanish Succession. For his services in Portuguese America, Carvalho, already a knight in the Order of Christ, was awarded a commandery worth 300 milreis and the post of alcaide-mor. Since there was no single commandery available with annual receipts for that amount, he was given the commandery of Santo Ildefonso de Val de Telhas in the Order of Christ, two other commanderies in Setúbal, and the post of alcaide-mor of Sines—the latter three in the Order of Santiago.

In March 1709, Carvalho was named governor of Rio de Janeiro. He arrived in June 1709, departed for Minas Gerais in July, and spent the next few months pacifying the area in the wake of the War of the Emboabas, the civil conflict between the Paulistas who had discovered the area's mineral wealth and the newcomers from Portugal and coastal Brazil. In the late fall he returned to Rio de Janeiro, where he remained until his appointment as governor of the newly created captaincy of São Paulo and Minas do Ouro. Installed in São Paulo in June 1710, he remained in the captaincy, erecting new townships and strengthening crown authority, until late September 1711. Upon hearing that an armada of eighteen ships under the French corsair René Duguay-Trouin had arrived at Rio de Janeiro, he quickly mobilized six thousand men from the mining areas and marched to the city's rescue. But it was too late: Rio had already been occupied and plundered by the French, and most of the ransom they had demanded had been paid. After the French departed on 13 November 1711, Carvalho helped restore order and rebuild Rio de Janeiro, holding the post of governor (October 1711–June 1713) while he continued to hold his governorship of São Paulo and Minas do Ouro.

Late in 1713 he set sail for Portugal. Enroute he spent eighteen days in Recife's harbor in the aftermath of Pernambuco's War of the Mascates and, upon his return to Portugal, he lobbied for the planter faction.

Carvalho married Dona Luisa Antônia de Mendonça, daughter of Dom Francisco de Melo and Dona Joana de Abreu e Melo. From this marriage, a son, Francisco de Albuquerque Coelho de Carvalho, was born. On 22 March 1722, Carvalho took office as governor of Angola, where he died.

See alsoPortuguese Empire .


The best treatment to date of Antônio de Albuquerque Coelho de Carvalho's Brazilian experience is found in C. R. Boxer, The Golden Age of Brazil, 1695–1750 (1962). Also useful is the same author's Fidalgos in the Far East, 1550–1770 (repr. 1968). There is a short biography in Portuguese by Aureliano Leite, Antônio de Albuquerque Coelho de Carvalho: Capitão-General de São Paulo de Minas do Ouro, no Brasil (1944). For Carvalho's services in Angola, see the late-eighteenth-century account of his governorship by Elias Alexandre Silva Correia, História de Angola, vol. 1 (1937), pp. 353-357.

                                   Francis A. Dutra

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Carvalho, Antônio de Albuquerque Coelho de (1655–1725)

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