Lavradio, Marquês do (1729–1790)

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Lavradio, Marquês do (1729–1790)

Marquês do Lavradio (Dom Luís de Almeida Portugal Soares Alarção Eça Melo Pereira Aguilar Fiel de Lugo Mascarenhas Silva Mendonça e Lencastre; b. 27 June 1729; d. 2 May 1790), governor of Bahia and viceroy of Rio de Janeiro. Born in Lisbon, the son of an army officer who served as captain-general of Angola and briefly as the last viceroy of Brazil at Bahia de Todos os Santos, Lavradio became the forty-fifth governor and captain-general of Bahia (1768–1769) before being promoted to Rio de Janeiro, where he became the third viceroy to reside there (1769–1779). As had his predecessors, Lavradio found his authority far more circumscribed than his exalted title would suggest. His regime coincided with the climax of a century-long dispute between Spain and Portugal over the temperate lands between present-day São Paulo and the Río de la Plata. In spite of his best efforts, he was unable to prevent vastly superior Spanish forces from gaining control over the southern portions of that disputed territory. Acutely aware of the fact that Brazil's first gold boom was already over, Lavradio tried to stimulate new sources of royal income by encouraging the production of tobacco, cereals, fibers, whale products, and dyestuffs and to curtail illicit foreign trade with Brazilian ports. Toward the end of his vice-regency he drafted an illuminating, markedly modest account of his administration, one of the few such terminal reports ever prepared by senior administrators of colonial Brazil. Subsequently, he became a member of the Council of War and president of the senior judicial tribunal of the kingdom, the Desembargo do Paço, but left no trace of his role in either body.

See alsoBahia; Brazil: The Colonial Era, 1500–1808.


Dauril Alden, Royal Government in Colonial Brazil (1968).

John Armitage, The History of Brazil … 1808 to … 1831, 2 vols. (London, 1836), 2: 161-242.

Additional Bibliography

Maxwell, Kenneth. Conflicts & Conspiracies: Brazil and Portugal, 1750–1808. New York: Routledge, 2004.

Oliveira, Cecilia Helena de Salles, Maria Lígia Coelho Prado, and Maria Helena Capelato. A independência e a construção do império, 1750–1824. São Paulo-SP: Atual Editora, 1995.

                                        Dauril Alden

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Lavradio, Marquês do (1729–1790)

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