A World on the Move: The Portuguese in Africa, Asia, and America, 1415-1808

Overview

This is the story of the first and one of the greatest colonial empires: its birth, apotheosis and decline. 'The unfailing attraction which the history of Portugal holds for me lies in the unceasing ebb and flow of people, commodities, flora and fauna, ideas, and influences with the globe as their stage,' writes A.J.R. Russell-Wood, introducing this narrative of four centuries' events on four continents. This is not specialist political, imperial, economic or religious history. 'These aspects,' Russell-Wood says,...
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Overview

This is the story of the first and one of the greatest colonial empires: its birth, apotheosis and decline. 'The unfailing attraction which the history of Portugal holds for me lies in the unceasing ebb and flow of people, commodities, flora and fauna, ideas, and influences with the globe as their stage,' writes A.J.R. Russell-Wood, introducing this narrative of four centuries' events on four continents. This is not specialist political, imperial, economic or religious history. 'These aspects,' Russell-Wood says, 'have been ably covered by others.' What fascinates him is movement. 'Taking movement as my underlying and unifying theme has freed me to cross oceans, to move form one continent to another, and escape within reason the tyranny of chronology. The themes of transportation, people, commodities, flora and fauna, and ideas, to illustrate this world on the move reflect the diversity, breadth, and balance between competing interests and priorities. By treating the Portuguese from a global perspective, I hope to counterbalance the scholarly proclivity to compartmentalize their activities into discrete geographical regions.'.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Undoubtedly daunting to the uninitiated, this book by Russell-Wood (history, Johns Hopkins) possesses an exemplary format: one of motion. It demonstrates the motives, movements, and machinations of the Portuguese as they spread European culture across the globe and dazzles with its detail and inclusiveness. Familiarity with the geography is imperative; the writing is not obtuse, but the work can appear to leap from region to region to one not familiar with the ubiquity of the Portuguese explorers. The subject's extensive time frame can intensify this sensation. The work communicates well the different networks between and within the colonial regions and the homeland. The footnotes are good and the bibliography enviable. The maps and illustrations are useful and well chosen, particularly those showing the winds and ocean currents. Highly recommended for academic libraries and the advanced student.-- Clay Williams, Bluefield State Coll. Lib., W. Va.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312094270
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 1/28/1993
  • Pages: 305
  • Product dimensions: 6.48 (w) x 9.50 (h) x 1.19 (d)

Table of Contents

List of Maps
List of Illustrations
Acknowledgements
Introduction: Quincentennials 1
I Portugal and the 'Age of Discoveries' 8
II Movers: Caravels, Carracks, Caravans, Canoes, and Carts 27
III Flux and Reflux of People
i) Migrants and Settlers 58
ii) Servants of the Crown 64
iii) Servants of Christ 87
iv) Servants of Mammon 94
v) The Voiceless 106
vi) Individuals and Groups 112
vii) Carriers of Disease 119
IV Ebb and Flow of Commodities 123
V Dissemination of Flora and Fauna 148
VI Transmission of Styles, Mores, and Ideas 183
VII Movement in Word and Image 209
Chronology 222
Notes 228
Bibliography 244
A Note on Two Portuguese Artists 265
Acknowledgements for Illustrations 267
Index 269
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