Kings and Queens

The miracle of the roses / the legend of King SEBASTIÃO

In the 13thcentury, Dinis was the King of Portugal and he was married to a Castillian lady called Isabel. Dinis was a very popular king and he was also a poet. They lived most of their time in Coimbra, where Dinis had founded the first university in Portugal, because Isabel was a devout follower of the nuns that lived in the St. Claire Monastery. Isabel was famous for her piety and benevolence, always offering a helping word or hand to the poor that lived around the monastery in the city of Coimbra. One winter, in the month of January, the city had gone through a rough time due to heavy rains and extreme cold. Most of the poor people had become homeless and was staying close to the city walls and the monastery, waiting for some help from the nuns. Dinis, however, didn’t want them around and forbade everyone in the court to give them food or money, arguing that such behavior would only prevent them from working. Isabel, his wife, however, had different thoughts and came out every day with some money or bread for the poor, a fact that came to the ears of the king and his subjects.

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