The article discusses the problem of the oldest non‑literary text written in Old Portuguese. During the 20th century, several texts competed for the status of the “oldest written Portuguese document”. Over the course of time, the privileged position claimed by each of them was called into question. They were all dismissed either as later copies or as inauthentic texts and replaced by a new “oldest” text. The article follows this search through the course of the 20th century.