Álvaro I Nimi a Lukeni lua Mvemba was a Manikongo (Mwene Kongo), or king of Kongo, from 1568 to 1587.
Álvaro's father was an unknown Kongo nobleman who died, leaving his mother to remarry to King Henrique I. When Henrique I died fighting on the eastern frontier, he had left Álvaro as his regent. According to Duarte Lopes, Kongo's ambassador to Rome in 1584-88, Álvaro had taken up the kingship by common consent. However, there do appear to have been others who wished to be king, and some scholars, notably Francois Bontinck, think that Álvaro's rule was seen as an usurpation. The invasion of the Jagas, which took place shortly after Álvaro became king, is sometimes seen as a protest against this usurpation. Other scholars, however doubt the connection between the Jaga invasion and a dynastic crisis.
Álvaro sought to Europeanize Kongo more fully than had been the case before. He was the first king to refer to the capital city as São Salvador. He also sought to obtain a bishop from Rome, though it was not until the reign of his son Álvaro II of Kongo that this was accomplished.
In 1587, he was succeeded by his son Álvaro II.
|Reigned as||In Country||From||To||Coins Issued|
|Manikongo Álvaro I Nimi a Lukeni lua Mvemba (King Álvaro I)||Kongo||1568||March 1587|