Author Archives: Marco Ramerini

Portuguese language heritage in Africa

Elmina Castle, 1668. No Copyright

Written by Marco Ramerini. English text revision by Dietrich Köster. After the conquest, in 1415, of the Arab stronghold of Ceuta in Morocco, the Portuguese were the first Europeans to explore the African coast, and in the 1460s they built the first fort in Arguin (Mauritania). 1482 was the year of the construction of São Jorge da Mina Castle on ...

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Portuguese fortresses of Luanda

Fortress of São Miguel, Luanda, Angola. Author and Copyright Virgilio Pena da Costa

Written by Marco Ramerini. Photos by Virgílio Pena da Costa. English text revision by Dietrich Köster. The city of Luanda, the capital of Angola, was founded by the Portuguese explorer Paulo Dias de Novais on 25 January 1576. The city was named by the Portuguese as “São Paulo da Assumpção de Loanda”. The Portuguese, in the following years, built three ...

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Fort Jesus Mombasa: a Portuguese fortress in Kenya

Map of the Mombasa Fortress, Kenya. Bocarro, António. Livro das Plantas de todas as fortalezas, cidades e povoaçoens do Estado da Índia Oriental. 1635. No Copyright

Written by Marco Ramerini. English text revision by Dietrich Köster. In 1498 the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama arrived in Mombasa on his route to India. Fort Jesus was built after the Portuguese had become masters of the East African coast for nearly a hundred years. During this time they had as main base an unfortified factory at Malindi. The ...

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The European forts in Ghana

Elmina Castle, Ghana. Atlas Blaeu van der Hem (1665-1668). No Copyright

Written by Marco Ramerini. English text revision by Dietrich Köster. FORT SÃO JORGE DA MINA (ELMINA) The first European-built fort in Ghana was Fort São Jorge da Mina (Elmina), which was built by the Portuguese in 1482 near an African village, with which they traded, called by them Aldeia das Duas Partes. The foundation stone of this castle was laid ...

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