Dom João VI Left Brazil 200 Years Ago

He arrived in Brazil in 1808 and spent 13 years in the former colony

Rio de Janeiro

Napoleon's troops were on his heels when João Maria José Francisco Xavier de Paula Luís António Domingos Rafael de Bragança, Dom João VI decided to move to Brazil. He arrived in 1808 and spent 13 years in the former colony that, at the time, was part of the United Kingdom of Portugal.

This Monday (26th) marks the bicentenary of his departure from the territory. One year after his departure, Brazil fell under the control of his son Dom Pedro I and with his complacency, declared independence from the Portuguese crown.

In the popular imagination, Dom João is remembered as a glutton who hid pieces of chicken in his pocket and who was terrified of bathing. Despite this poor image, Dom João's visit to Rio de Janeiro helped to build a nation.

Translated by Kiratiana Freelon

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