The Chronicle of the Discovery and Conquest of Guinea. Vol. I

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WORKS ISSUED BY

The Hakluyt Society.


THE CHRONICLE

OF

THE DISCOVERY AND CONQUEST
OF GUINEA.

VOL. I.

No. XCV.

THE CHRONICLE

OF THE

DISCOVERY

AND

CONQUEST OF GUINEA.

WRITTEN BY

GOMES EANNES DE AZURARA;

NOW FIRST DONE INTO ENGLISH
BY

CHARLES RAYMOND BEAZLEY, M.A., F.R.G.S.,

fellow of merton college, oxford; corresponding member
of the lisbon geographical society;

and

EDGAR PRESTAGE, B.A.Oxon.,

knight of the most noble portuguese order of s. thiago; corresponding
member of the lisbon royal academy of sciences,
the lisbon geographical society, etc.

VOL. I.
(CHAPTERS I-XL).

With an Introduction on the Life and Writings of the Chronicler.

BURT FRANKLIN, PUBLISHER
NEW YORK, NEW YORK

Published by
BURT FRANKLIN
514 West 113th Street
New York 25, N. Y.

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED BY THE HAKLUYT SOCIETY
REPRINTED BY PERMISSION

PRINTED IN THE U.S.A.

TO
HIS MOST FAITHFUL MAJESTY

DOM CARLOS Io,

KING OF PORTUGAL AND THE ALGARVES,
THIS WORK IS BY PERMISSION
DEDICATED.

COUNCIL
OF
THE HAKLUYT SOCIETY.


Sir Clements Markham, K.C.B., F.R.S., Pres. R.G.S., President.
The Right Hon. The Lord Stanley of Alderley, Vice-President.
Sir A. Wollaston Franks, K.C.B., F.R.S., Vice-President.
C. Raymond Beazley, Esq., M.A.
Miller Christy, Esq.
Colonel G. Earl Church.
The Right Hon. George N. Curzon, M.P.
Albert Gray, Esq.
The Right Hon. Lord Hawkesbury.
Edward Heawood, Esq., M.A.
Admiral Sir Anthony H. Hoskins, K.C.B.
Vice-Admiral Albert H. Markham.
A. P. Maudslay, Esq.
E. Delmar Morgan, Esq.
Captain Nathan, R.E.
Admiral Sir E. Ommanney, C.B., F.R.S.
Cuthbert E. Peek, Esq.
E. G. Ravenstein, Esq.
Coutts Trotter, Esq.
Rear-Admiral W. J. L. Wharton, C.B., R.N.

William Foster, Esq., Honorary Secretary.

Design 1

EDITORS’ PREFACE.

Letter T

he following translation of Azurara’s Chronicle of the Discovery and Conquest of Guinea is the first complete English version that has appeared of the chief contemporary authority for the life-work of Prince Henry of Portugal, surnamed the Navigator; and we may remind members of the Hakluyt Society, and other readers, that we have but lately passed the fifth centenary of the Prince’s birth (March 4th, 1394).

The first volume includes about half of the text, together with an Introduction on the Life and Writings of Azurara, which it is hoped will be found more exhaustive and accurate than any previous notice of the historian.

In the second volume (which is due for the year 1897) will be given the rest of the Chronicle, with an Introduction on the Geographical Discoveries of the Portuguese, and Prince Henry’s share in the same. It will also contain notes for the explanation of historical and other questions arising out of certain passages in the text of both volumes. To illustrate the condition of geographical knowledge in the period covered by the present instalment, we have included four reproductions of contemporary (or almost contemporary) maps: (1) Africa, according to the Laurentian Portolano of 1351 in the Medicean Library at Florence. This is the most remarkable of all the Portolani of the fourteenth century. Its outline of W. and S. Africa, and more particularly its suggestion of the bend of the Guinea Coast, is surprisingly near the truth, even as a guess, in a chart made one hundred and thirty-five years before the Cape of Good Hope was first rounded. (2) N.W. Africa, the Canary Isles, etc., according to the design of the Venetian brethren Pizzigani, in 1367. (3) The same according to the Catalan Map of 1375 in the Bibliothèque Nationale at Paris. The interior of Africa is filled with fantastic pictures of native tribes; the boatload of men off Cape Bojador in the extreme S.W. of the map probably represents the Catalan explorers of the year 1346, whose voyage in search of the “River of Gold” this map commemorates. (4) The same, with certain other parts of the world, according to Andrea Bianco in 1436. In the succeeding volume, we hope to offer some illustrations of the cartography of Prince Henry’s later years, as well as a likeness of the Prince himself, either from the Paris portrait (MSS. Port. 41, fol. 5 bis) or from the statue at Belem. We had expected to be able to furnish our readers with a copy of the portrait of the Prince from the important oil-painting on board preserved in a corridor of the extinct monastery adjoining the Church of S. Vicente de Fóra in Lisbon, but the photograph, which was taken by Senhor Camacho with the permission of His Eminence the Cardinal Patriarch, proved unsatisfactory, owing to the position of the picture and want of sufficient light.

We may add that a considerable part of the Paris manuscript of the Chronicle of Guinea has been collated for the present edition with the printed text as published by Santarem, and the result proves the accuracy of the latter.

We have to thank Senhor Jayme Batalha Reis, who has looked through the present version as far as the end of vol. i, and has kindly offered many suggestions. Among other Portuguese scholars who have been of service to us, we would especially mention Dr. Xavier da Cunha, of the Bibliotheca National, Lisbon; Senhor José Basto, of the Torre do Tombo, and General Brito Rebello. In a lesser degree we owe our acknowledgments to D. Carolina Michaëlis de Vasconcellos and Dr. Theophilo Braga, the chief authorities on all that pertains to Portuguese literature, as well as to the late Conselheiro J. P. de Oliveira Martins, whose untimely death robbed his country of her foremost man of letters.

C. R. B.

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