Manuel Pinto da Fonseca

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Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_table_infobox_0

Manuel Pinto da FonsecaManuel Pinto da Fonseca_header_cell_0_0_0
Grand Master of the Order of Saint JohnManuel Pinto da Fonseca_header_cell_0_1_0
MonarchManuel Pinto da Fonseca_header_cell_0_2_0 King Charles V (until 1753)Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_cell_0_2_1
Preceded byManuel Pinto da Fonseca_header_cell_0_3_0 Ramon DespuigManuel Pinto da Fonseca_cell_0_3_1
Succeeded byManuel Pinto da Fonseca_header_cell_0_4_0 Francisco Ximenes de TexadaManuel Pinto da Fonseca_cell_0_4_1
Personal detailsManuel Pinto da Fonseca_header_cell_0_5_0
BornManuel Pinto da Fonseca_header_cell_0_6_0 (1681-05-24)24 May 1681

Lamego, Kingdom of PortugalManuel Pinto da Fonseca_cell_0_6_1

DiedManuel Pinto da Fonseca_header_cell_0_7_0 23 January 1773(1773-01-23) (aged 91)

Valletta, MaltaManuel Pinto da Fonseca_cell_0_7_1

Resting placeManuel Pinto da Fonseca_header_cell_0_8_0 St. John's Co-CathedralManuel Pinto da Fonseca_cell_0_8_1
NationalityManuel Pinto da Fonseca_header_cell_0_9_0 PortugueseManuel Pinto da Fonseca_cell_0_9_1
RelationsManuel Pinto da Fonseca_header_cell_0_10_0 Rosenda PaulichiManuel Pinto da Fonseca_cell_0_10_1
ChildrenManuel Pinto da Fonseca_header_cell_0_11_0 José António Pinto da Fonseca e VilhenaManuel Pinto da Fonseca_cell_0_11_1
Military serviceManuel Pinto da Fonseca_header_cell_0_12_0
AllegianceManuel Pinto da Fonseca_header_cell_0_13_0 Portugal Kingdom of Portugal

Sovereign_Military_Order_of_Malta Order of Saint JohnManuel Pinto da Fonseca_cell_0_13_1

Manuel Pinto da Fonseca (also Emmanuel Pinto de Fonseca; 24 May 1681 – 23 January 1773) was a Portuguese nobleman, the 68th Grand Master of the Order of Saint John, from 1741 until his death. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_0

He undertook many building projects, introducing the Baroque style throughout Malta. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_1

The cost of these projects contributed to bankrupting the Order in the decades following his death. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_2

His views were comparatively liberal. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_3

In 1764, he agreed to the re-unification with the Protestant Prussian branch of the Order, without, however, receiving the approval of Pope Clement XIII. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_4

The pope did agree, reluctantly, to the expulsion of the Jesuits from Malta in 1768. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_5

Biography Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_section_0

He was the son of Miguel Álvaro Pinto da Fonseca, Alcaide-Mór de Ranhados, and his wife, Ana Pinto Teixeira. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_6

The coat of arms of the Pinto portrays five red crescents, to symbolising that the Pinto de Fonseca family won five battles with the Ottomans. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_7

Before his election as Grand Master on 18 January 1741, Pinto da Fonseca was a knight of the Langue of Portugal. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_8

He had an illegitimate son by one Rosenda Paulichi, daughter of Alberigo Paulichi and Patronilla Ramuzetta, named José António Pinto da Fonseca e Vilhena, who married his first cousin Maria Inácia Pinto da Fonseca de Sousa Teixeira e Vilhena, illegitimate daughter of Francisco Vaz Pinto (his father's brother) by one Clara Cerqueira. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_9

He was elected as Grand Master in his 60th year, and he lived to be a nonagenarian, ruling the Order for 32 years. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_10

As Grand Master, Pinto da Fonseca kept an elaborate court, imitating the courts of the great European princes of his era. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_11

The court was a center of intrigue, the Grand Master being surrounded by a multitude of "ambitious pretenders". Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_12

In 1749, one of his bodyguards, Giuseppe Cohen, refused to join a plot led by Pasha Mustafa to stage a Muslim slave revolt; this refusal led to the exposure and suppression of the revolt, which afterward was celebrated each 29 June, the anniversary. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_13

Pinto da Fonseca made substantial donations to the Conventual Church, and among the most notable mementoes are two large and heavy bells cast by the Master Founder of the Order of Saint John, Aloisio Bouchut, in 1747 and 1748; they still hang in the belfries of what is now the Co-Cathedral. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_14

These bells were made by melting two basilisks that were left by the Ottomans after the Great Siege of 1565. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_15

As Grand Master, Pinto da Fonseca completed construction of the Auberge de Castille (still one of the most important buildings in the Maltese capital city, Valletta); his bust and arms adorn its façade. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_16

Today this building houses the Office of the Prime Minister. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_17

Pinto built nineteen storehouses at the Marina, which still bear his name, and built several other buildings and structures. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_18

In 1756, he has built the first printing press in Malta at the magistral palace of the Grand Master, known as la stamperia del Palazzo. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_19

Pinto gave his name to the then town of Qormi and accorded it the status of a city as "Città Pinto". Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_20

The city of Qormi adopted the Pinto arms, with the tinctures reversed, for its own coat of arms and flag. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_21

Pinto gained a bad reputation for creating large debts for the treasury of the Order, leading to bankruptcy. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_22

In 1764, Pinto da Fonseca negotiated with King Frederick II ("Frederick the Great") of Prussia a reunification of the Protestant Bailiwick of Brandenburg with the Catholic Order of Saint John, but as Pope Clement XIII would not allow admission into a Roman Catholic organization of men viewed as heretics by the Church, the agreement came to naught. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_23

In 1765/6, Pinto was befriended by Italian adventurer and occultist Alessandro Cagliostro. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_24

A Master Mason of Freemasonry, dom Pinto initiated to the 33rd degree don Raimondo di Sangro, prince of Sansevero, which later established the first Scottish Rite Masonic Lodge in Naples, Italy. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_25

Malta since 1734 was nominally a fief under the House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies, from 1759 under Ferdinand III. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_26

Bernardo Tanucci pressured Pinto to follow the Bourbon policy of suppression of the Jesuits, threatening a boycott of Malta if he refused. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_27

Pinto consulted with Pope Clement XIII, who reluctantly agreed to the expulsion of the Jesuits from Malta, insisting that it should be done "with due decency". Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_28

Pinto signed the decree of expulsion on 22 April 1768. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_29

Twenty Jesuits (thirteen fathers, five brothers and two students) were expelled, while three elderly Jesuits, two of them native Maltese, were allowed to remain. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_30

After the expulsion of the Jesuit Order, Pinto appropriated all the revenue accruing from its property on the island with the aim of establishing a Pubblica Università di Studi Generali. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_31

The decree constituting the University, now the University of Malta was signed by Pinto on 22 November 1769, having been authorised to do so by the Papal brief, Sedula Romani Pontificis, received on 20 October 1769. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_32

By 22 November of that year, the Grandmaster signed a bando establishing the University. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_33

Pinto died on 23 January 1773, aged 91. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_34

His body was laid in a neoclassic monument with his mosaic portrait. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_35

A statue of Pinto is found in Floriana. Manuel Pinto da Fonseca_sentence_36


Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manuel Pinto da Fonseca.