He was born in Coimbra in 1958 at whose university he is Associate Professor and a researcher at the History of Society and Culture Centre. He teaches medieval European history and ancient and medieval military history; in addition, he is the author of more than ninety scientific works, ten of which are books. He was Guest Professor at the Université Paul Valéry (Montpellier) and Visiting Lecturer at École Pratique des Hautes Études (Paris). Between 1995 and 2001, he coordinated a transdisciplinary research project at the São Jorge Military Field at Aljubarrota. In the year 2000, in conjunction with Mário Barroca and Isabel Cristina Fernandes, he organised Pera Guerrejar - armamento medieval no espaço português [“Gerrejar Pear – medieval armament in the Portuguese space”]. He is also a Correspondent Academic at the Portuguese Academy of History and at De Re Militari - The Society for Medieval Military History.
Among his principal works are: A guerra em Portugal nos finais da Idade Média [“War in Portugal and the end of the Middle Ages”] (Lisbon, Notícias, 1998, National Defence Prize 1996); Os castelos portugueses nos finais da Idade Média [“Portuguese castles at the Middle Ages”], Nova História Militar de Portugal. vol. I [“New Miltary History of Portugal”] (with José Mattoso, Mário Barroca and Luís Miguel Duarte, Círculo de Leitores, 2003); Vegêcio. Compêndio da Arte Militar [“Compendium of Military Art”] (with José Eduardo Braga, Coimbra University Press, 2009) (for which he received an Honourable Mention for the Technical and Scientific Translation Prize organised by the Foundation for Science and Technology – Latin Union/União Latina in 2010) and Cicatrizes da guerra no espaço fronteiriço português, 1250-1450 [“Scars of War on the Portuguese Border Space: 1250-1450”] (with Miguel Gomes Martins, Coimbra, Palimage, 2010, recipient of the Pedro Cunha e Serra Prize from the the Portuguese Academy of History in 2011).
He is a Professor, researcher and translator and was Pro-President for Culture and Director of Coimbra University Press.