Vasco da Gama (c.1469-1524)

Prince Henry the Navigator inspired the first era of Portuguese exploration of the coast of Africa and beyond, starting in the 1430's
By 1494, Portugal and Spain were prepared to divide the whole non-European world between them, in the Treaty of Tordesillas

Early depictions of Vasco da Gama; *a map showing his route*; on his voyages see *Kerr, 2:6:1*
On his first voyage (1498-99), he arrived in Calicut on May 20, 1498; many artists have imagined his famous first meeting with the Zamorin (from "Samudra-raja," or "ocean lord") of Calicut
He left some men at Calicut to set up a trading post, but the Zamorin later had them killed; on his second voyage, his military successes and vengeful cruelties helped him wrest trade concessions from the Zamorin
On his second voyage (1502-03) he visited Cochin, as well as *Cananore*, *Quilon*, and other small ports along the *Malabar Coast*
From his and others' voyages there soon grew up the major Portuguese trading fort and colony in Goa, and other, smaller settlements like *Daman*, and *Diu*

He died in Cochin (1524), on a third voyage; the Portuguese seem to have a real fascination with commemorative medals of him and other early explorers
He features very prominently in the *"Lusiad"* (1572), the Portuguese national epic by Luis de Camões
*Luis de Camões* (1524-1580), who himself spent time in Goa, was as colorful a character as the explorers whom he celebrated
Vasco da Gama is well represented in statues, too
Some contemporary visions of da Gama

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