Amarante on the bank of the Rio Tâmega.
| • ||José Luis Gaspar (|
|• Total||301.33 km2 (116.34 sq mi)|
|• Density||190/km2 (480/sq mi)|
Amarante (Portuguese pronunciation:
Amarante's origin dates to the primitive peoples that hunted and gathered in the Serra da Aboboreira, sometime during the
The first prominent building erected during the area of Amarante was likely the Albergaria do Covelo do Tâmega sometime in the 12th century, by order of Queen D. Mafalda, wife of D.
The urban agglomeration of Amarante became important and gained visibility with the arrival of
In the 16th century, King D.
In the second French invasion, during the
The bridge was also significant to the resistance in the northern campaign. Loison did not count on the entrenched conflict between his forces and the Anglo-Portuguese forces, commanded by Brigadier Silveira. These forces, which included badly-equipped, inexperienced citizens and clergy, were able to resist for the next 14 days, impeding the passage of Napoleonic forces, later known as the heroic defense of the bridge of Amarante. The circlement of the bridge ended on 2 May, around 3:00, following a diversionary manoeuvre by French forces that diverted a small pocket of Portuguese stationed at Eira do Paço, who believed the French would attempt to across by Morleiros. Taking advantage of the fog, the French placed gunpowder near the Portuguese trenches along the bridge, then detonated the explosives. These created confusion and panic among the defenders and caused death and injury in their ranks. Loison then continued his journey, until he was forced to withdrew in the upper Douro by Brigadier Silveira's forces, who he had reorganized, during Napoleon's northern march to the city of Lisbon. For his efforts, Silveira was given a cavalry command, owing to his defense of the bridge, and attributed the title of Count of Amarante and elevated to the status of General. The town was also awarded the Order of the Tower and Sword, which it displays on its coats-of-arms.
The municipality of Amarante, administratively, was part of the