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Passing the Canary islands on July 15, the fleet got to São Tiago (Santiago) in the Cape Verde archipelago on the 26th, remaining there until August 3. Then, to protect against the currents of the Gulf the Guinea, da Gama carried out a long detour v the south Atlantic prior to attempting to round the Cape of good Hope. The fleet got to Santa Helena bay (in modern South Africa) ~ above November 7. Unfavourable winds and also the adverse current delayed the rounding of the Cape of an excellent Hope until November 22. 3 days later on da Gama anchored in Mossel Bay, put up a padrão on an island, and also ordered the storeship come be broken up. Sailing again ~ above December 8, the fleet reached the coast of Natal on Christmas Day. On January 11, 1498, the anchored for five days close to the mouth of a small river in between Natal and also Mozambique, i beg your pardon they referred to as the Rio carry out Cobre (Copper River). Top top January 25, in what is currently Mozambique, they got to the Quelimane River, which they called the Rio dos Bons Sinais (the river of great Omens), and also erected an additional padrão. By now many of the crews were sick with scurvy; the expedition rested a month if the ships were repaired.

On march 2 the fleet got to the Island the Mozambique, the occupants of which thought the Portuguese to be Muslims like themselves. Da Gama learned the they traded with Arab merchants and that four Arab vessels laden through gold, jewels, silver, and spices were then in port; he was additionally told the Prester John, the long-sought Christian ruler, resided in the interior however held many coastal cities. The Sultan of Mozambique offered da Gama with two pilots, one of whom deserted when he uncovered that the Portuguese to be Christians.

The expedition reached Mombasa (now in Kenya) on April 7 and also dropped anchor in ~ Malindi (also currently in Kenya) top top April 14, where a Gujarati pilot that knew the course to Calicut, on the southwest coastline of India, was taken aboard. After a 23-day run throughout the Indian Ocean, the Ghats mountains of India to be sighted, and Calicut was got to on may 20. There da Gama set up a padrão come prove he had reached India. The welcome of the Zamorin, the Hindu ruler, that Calicut (then the most important trading center of southern India), was dispelled by da Gama’s insignificant gifts and also rude behaviour. Da Gama failed come conclude a treaty—partly due to the fact that of the hostility the Muslim merchants and also partly because the trumpery presents and cheap trade items that he had brought, while suited to the West afri trade, to be hardly in need in India. The Portuguese had mistakenly thought the Hindus to it is in Christians.


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Vasco da Gama
Vasco da Gama transferring the letter that King Manuel i of Portugal come the Zamorin that Calicut, India.

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John D. Morris & Company/Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. (file no. LC-USZ62-105882)

After stress and anxiety increased, da Gama left at the finish of August, taking with him five or 6 Hindus so that King Manuel could learn around their customs. Ignorance and indifference to local knowledge had actually led da Gama to select the worst feasible time that year for his departure, and he had actually to sail against the monsoon. He visited Anjidiv Island (near Goa) before sailing because that Malindi, i beg your pardon he got to on January 8, 1499, after practically three months crossing the Arabian Sea. Countless of the crew passed away of scurvy. At Malindi, because of greatly lessened numbers, da Gama notified the “São Rafael” to it is in burned; there he also erected a padrão. Mozambique, whereby he set up his critical padrão, was got to on February 1. On in march 20 the “São Gabriel” and also “Berrio” rounded the Cape together yet a month later on were parted by a storm; the “Berrio” reached the Tagus flow in Portugal ~ above July 10. Da Gama, in the “São Gabriel,” continued to Terceira Island in the Azores, whence he is said to have actually dispatched his flagship to Lisbon. The himself reached Lisbon on September 9 and also made his triumphal entry ripe days later, spending the interval mourning his brothers Paulo, who had passed away on Terceira. (Out the da Gama’s original crew of 170, just 55 men had actually survived.) Manuel i granted da Gama the title of dom, an yearly pension the 1,000 cruzados, and also estates.