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Portuguese-Speaking Diaspora

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Asia de Joam de Barros, dos fectos que os Portugueses fizeram no descobrimento & conquista dos mares & terras do Oriente

João de  Barros. Asia de Joam de Barros, dos fectos que os Portugueses fizeram no descobrimento & conquista dos mares & terras do Oriente. Lisbon: Printed by Germão Galharde, 1552. [ João de Barros. Asia, about the deeds of the Portuguese in the discovery and conquest of the seas and lands of the Orient.]

Born in 1496, two years prior to Vasco da Gama’s discovery of the sea route to India, Barros was raised in the court and as a young man wrote the popular chivalric Crónica do Imperador Clarimundo (1522), about the supposed Hungarian royal ancestry of the Portuguese kings. He was later rewarded with an official posting in the Gold Coast (now Ghana). He returned to Lisbon and held administrative positions in the India House, which oversaw all the territories under Portuguese rule. He was presented a large land grant or captaincy in northern Brazil, which was a failed venture. Barros’ major work is his multi-volume Décadas da Asia, a history based on the decades of the Portuguese presence in India. The Decades are considered one of the most important works on Portuguese expansionism.