The great discoveries of Portuguese navigators
★ 1415, The Conquest of Ceuta
The crossing of the Strait of Gibraltar and the conquest of Ceuta in 1415, a strategic city that controls its entry, is nowadays considered as the starting date of the era of the Great Portuguese Discoveries.
On 25 July 1415, 250 ships carrying 50,000 men left the port of Lisbon to reach Faro, then Algeciras and finally Ceuta. On August 22nd, the city of Ceuta fell into the hands of the Portuguese after weak resistance from the Moors. This first Portuguese conquest in Africa then became the starting point for the exploration of the African continent.
★ 1488, the passage of the Cape of Good Hope
In 1488, Bartolomeu Dias went over the Cape of Good Hope. When following the coast from the equator, the Cape of Good Hope is not the southernmost point of the African continent but it is the place from which one begins to travel eastward.
★ 1498, the arrival in India
On 4 July 1497, Vasco da Gama left Lisbon with 4 vessels and 200 men. He followed the maritime route opened by Bartolomeu Dias and passed the Cape of Good Hope (Cape of Storms) on 22 November 1497 where he embarked guides familiar with the currents of the Indian Ocean.
He reached the port of Pantalayini in India on 21 May 1498 and landed on the beach of Kappad on 28 May with a crew in rags, exhausted and decimated by scurvy and dysentery. The trip is a failure and the expected trade agreements are not concluded. Nevertheless, Vasco da Gama is covered with honors on his return and launches the legend of the first traveller to reach India when the country has long been crossed by Venetian merchants. The Portuguese then set up an administration, established the position of Viceroy of India, and built forts at strategic points. The entire Indian Ocean is soon under Portuguese control. Discoveries are now continuing elsewhere.
* Inspired by the opening of the India Road, the soap maker Barbearia is issuing a new luxury soap with an intense scent of rose, jasmine, and vanilla named 1498 India.
★ 1500, the takeover of Brazil
After Vasco da Gama's return in 1499, King D. Manuel I gave the order to prepare a new fleet for India. This large fleet of 13 vessels weights anchor on March 9, 1500 with the objective of establishing trade relations with Indian Ocean ports. On March 14, the fleet reached the Canary Islands, on March 22, it was in Cape Verde. This is where Pedro Alvares Cabral's boat mysteriously disappeared.
On April 22, 1500, Cabral boarded in Brazil and took possession of it. On May 2, he carries on his journey to India according to the strategic official plan of the journey. The occupation of Brazil by Europeans began.
★ 1543, the discovery of Japan
At the beginning of the 16th century, the Portuguese established many trading posts in the Indian Ocean and continued their explorations towards China. In 1543, driven by a typhoon, Portuguese adventurers landed on Tanegashima, an island in the Japanese archipelago. Portuguese vessels then began to arrive in Japan and acted as intermediaries in trade with China through their trading post in Goa, India.