ARRUDA, Francisco de
(d. 1547, Évora)


Portuguese military architect. Little is known about the life of the master builder Francisco de Arruda and his older brother Diogo. Francisco is known to have died in 1547, out-living his brother who died in 1531, but the year and place of his birth is unknown, though it may be assumed he came from the Alentejo region as many of his buildings are in that area of Portugal. As well as his brother Diogo, Francisco's son Miguel de Arruda was also later a builder and architect, with projects in Lagos in the Algarve and in the colonies of Brazil and Mozambique.

Francisco's early work was the repair of the forts at Moura, Mourao and Portel near the border with Spain. He also traveled to North Africa to build fortifications in Morocco and a Moorish influence is seen in some of his later work.

Francisco is known to be the chief architect of the Belém Tower, the Aqueduto da Amoreira and the Church of Nossa Senhora da Assunçao in Elvas, as well as the Aqueduto da Agua de Prata in Évora.