The Conquest of Brazil

The Conquest of Brazil

The Conquest of Brazil

The Conquest of Brazil

Excerpt

It was glorious to be Pope on New Year's Day, in the year of our Lord 1500. Although Copernicus was then gazing at the stars, he had not yet vetoed the edicts which declared Our World the center of the universe, and reduced us to the contemptible position of a satellite of the sun. The monk, Luther, was pacing the floor and plotting treason but not yet offering disputation. Although the great Crusades were over, the crusading spirit was by no means dead. The Holy Inquisition was working splendidly; and over in Spain an imaginative boy of eight was growing up to carry the Cross to Indians and Asiatics whose very existence was as yet undreamed, St. Ignatius of Loyola.

It was very splendid to be a king on New Year's Day in the year 1500, and the two who ruled over the Iberian Peninsula had every reason to be pleased with their jobs. The King of Spain had recently received the continent of North America as a present from an Italian mariner named Columbus; and only three months before, one Vasco da Gama had returned from Calicut with Africa and India as a souvenir for the King of Portugal. Over on the next peninsula, a clever Florentine named Machiavelli was busy gathering material for handbooks designed to improve the kingly technique of profiting by such opportunities; Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, and Michelangelo were adorning the civilization of the day; and although the Swiss Confederation had just gone frankly republican, it was such a diminutive oasis in the desert of absolute monarchy that a king could don his raiment of divine right and ride forth to greet the best of all possible worlds.

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.