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Conquest of Asilah
Part of Moroccan-Portuguese conflicts
Portuguese Morocco.PNG
Portuguese possessions in Morocco (1415–1769)
Date24 August 1471
LocationAsilah, Morocco
Result Portuguese victory
PortugueseFlag1385.svg Kingdom of Portugal Marinid emblem of Morocco.svg Wattasid Morocco
Commanders and leaders
Afonso V of Portugal
Prince John
Mohamed Cheikh
30,000 men
400 ships
Casualties and losses
Unknown 2,000 killed[1]
5,000 captured[2]

The Conquest of Asilah (Arabic language: أصيلة، أرزيلة‎;Portuguese: Arzila), took place in Morocco on 24 August 1471, and opposed the Kingdom of Portugal and the Wattasid Morocco.

Continuing with his policy of expansion of the Portuguese territories in Morocco, and with the spirit of Crusade against the Muslims always present, King Afonso V of Portugal initially set plans to conquer Tangier, but subsequently decided to conquer Arzila.

Departing from the Portuguese town of Lagos with an army of about 30,000 men and 400 ships,[3] Afonso V arrived at the Moroccan coast on the afternoon of 22 August. The Portuguese King then summoned his Council and decided to attack Asilah on the morning of the following day. After a troubled disembarkation that resulted in the death of more than 200 men caused by strong winds and waves, Afonso's army reached the shore and laid siege to the city of Asilah, conquering it after a hard battle on 24 of August, 1471.[4]

The Count of Valença, Henrique de Menezes, was appointed as the first Portuguese governor of Asilah by King Afonso V.[5]

See also

  • History of Portugal
  • History of Morocco
  • Portuguese Empire
  • Wattasid dynasty
  • House of Avis
  • Battle of Ceuta
  • Edward of Portugal
  • Henry the Navigator
  • Fernando, the Saint Prince


  1. Diffie, Shafer, Winius "On August 24 the Portuguese captured the city killing some 2000 "infidels" and taking 5000 captives." p.145
  2. Diffie, Shafer, Winius, p.145
  3. Black, "Asilah had been captured in 1471 by a Portuguese force of 400 ships and 30,000 men." p.18
  4. Diffie, Shafer, Winius p.145
  5. Quintella, p.181, p.182


  • Jeremy Black, Cambridge illustrated atlas, warfare: Renaissance to revolution, 1492-1792 (1996) ISBN 0-521-47033-1
  • Bailey Wallys Diffie,Boyd C. Shafer,George Davison Winius, Foundations of the Portuguese empire, 1415-1580 (1977) ISBN 0-8166-0782-6
  • Ignacio da Costa Quintella, Academia das Ciências de Lisboa, Annaes da marinha portugueza, Volume 1 (1839)

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