The Kingdom of Portugal, founded in the first half of the twelfth century, was not only contemporary of the Crusades in the Middle, but led his own crusade war against the Moors – the so-called Christian Reconquista. In this context, born in the Iberian Peninsula autonomous religious orders, supranational, designed to expel Muslims from the territory – alongside the orders born in the Holy Land, as the Templars or the Hospitallers.
Among the Iberian character of orders, we highlight the Order of Santiago, Alcantara Order and the Order of Calatrava. The latter, founded in 1158 with the help of King Sancho III of Castile, was soon confirmed by papal bull, adopting the Rule of St. Benedict and the Constitution of the Cistercian Order. Of the Order of Calatrava would be born as an independent arm in the kingdom of Portugal, the future Order of St. Benedict of Avis.