Inside the monumental monastery in Alcobaça rest the sarcophagi of Pedro and Inês, the protagonists of a tragic medieval love story – with a Game of Thrones level of gore and treachery!
Pedro, the Crown Prince of Portugal in the 14th century was soon to be married to Constança of Castille. When they first met, Pedro caught a glimpse of one of Constança’s maids: Inês de Castro, a Galician noblewoman with ties to the Castillan court, and soon after, they fell in love for each other.
Pedro was committed to his marriage with Constança of which he had three children. However, Pedro’s and Inês’ love for each other never waned and they kept meeting in secret. Rumors about the affair spread throughout the court and, after Constança died giving birth, the outraged king Afonso exiled Inês – already mother of four of Pedro’s children – to a convent in Coimbra. Pedro was not allowed in, but kept roaming around the walls of the convent, smuggling in love letters.
Seeing the futility of keeping the lovers separated, and fearful of bastard claims to the throne, the king ordered three noblemen to assassinate Inês by decapitating her. An enraged and vengeful Pedro spent years hunting his lover’s assassins down, finally capturing two of them. He executed them in a public display, ripping their hearts out from their bodies.
Legend has it that after being crowned king, Pedro exhumed the corpse of Inês, claiming to have married her in life and forcing the whole court to acknowledge his queen and kiss her hand.
They now rest together in stone for eternity, in the halls of the church of the monastery of Alcobaça.