Nuno Alvares Pereira is a hero of Portuguese history.
Nuno Alvares Pereira was born in Portugal on 24th June 1360, at Cernache do Bomjardin, illegitimate son of Brother Álvaro Gonçalves Pereira (Hospitalier Knight of St. John of Jerusalem and prior of Crato) and D. Iria Gonçalves do Carvalhal.
Nuno Alvares Pereira is most highly regarded in Portugal for masterminding the Battle of Aljubarrota in 1385. In Aljubarrota, Portugal, in concert with England, stopped an invasion by Castile.
Nuno Álvares Pereira became protector and Constable of Portugal, in practice supreme commander of Portugal.
Nuno fought and won many other battles between 1383 and 1411, and, after peace was established with Castile.
Nuno participated in the expedition in 1415 to Ceuta in North Africa
He was made Count of Ourém in 1383, and his main feudal castle was in Ourém, the county where Fátima is located.
Nuno received from John I the titles of Count of Arraiolos and Count of Barcelos. He was also made the Mordomo-Mor of Portugal.
Nuno Álvares Pereira had only one daughter, Beatriz Pereira de Alvim. D Beatriz became the wife of Afonso, Count of Barcelos (illegitimate son of John I of Portugal) and first Duke of Bragança. Therefore, Nuno Álvares Pereira was the ancestor of the House of Bragança which became the Portuguese Royal house of Portugal (1640-1910) and Brazil (1815-1889).
Following the death of his wife, Nuno entered a Carmelite monastery he had established, taking the religious name Friar Nuno of Saint Mary.
He was renowned for his devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary and is considered the Founder of the Secular Order because the secular Confraternity of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, better known as the Confraternity of the Holy Constable, which he founded in Lisbon to support his work with the poor with contributions from its noble members, eventually evolved into the present Carmelite Third Order.
Nuno of St. Mary (Nuno Alvares Pereira) died as a simple Carmelite brother on April 1, 1431 and was beatified on January 23,1918.