Remember the Rainforest 1
(IV)Gaioso (p.245) quotes the following articles, with which the Portuguese exchanged for a black slave, in the northwestern regions of Guinea, in the year 1810:
The value of these articles is 50% higher in Africa than in Lisbon where they are taken.
Export duties to a black slave were 2 $ 400; and its transportation to Maranhao was valued at $ 20,000.
Import taxes, levied in Brazil on a black man, amount to a total of $ 8 to $ 9, and state financiers seek to explain the conservation of this income with the excuse that the slave trade had already been authorized since 1440. Pope (Eugenio IV).
The territory of Vila de Santo Antonio de Alcantara appears to have been the first settlement in the entire province of Maranhao. It formed the captaincy of Cuma or Tapuia-tapera, which stretched from Maranhao Island to the north to the Turi River. In addition to this captaincy, it contained the large lands that, from 1624 onwards, apparently designated without definite limits, along the coast, from the 5th south latitude to the mouth of the Amazon River, formed the
Maranhao to Grao Para
State of Maranhao. and Grao-Para, comprising at that time, yet three more royal fiefs; the captaincy of Gurupi or Caete, north of the Turi River, to the Amazon; the barony of Joanes or Marajo Island; and Cameta's captaincy.
The misfortune of the first settlers, who wished to settle in this territory, the invasion of the French and later that of the Dutch,
and, finally, also the difficulties of communication with the southern provinces, may perhaps be the main reasons. of the slower progress of its colonization, compared to that of the other provinces, although in Portugal it was always known to appreciate the richness and happy situation of this captaincy.
The coasts of the present province of Maranhao were undoubtedly first discovered by the Spanish navigators, the brothers Pinzon (1500), as they sailed from Cape St. Augustine along the continent to the mouth of the Amazon. From this expedition the name of Maranhao (Maranan) must have originated, which at first was probably given to the river, and then to the whole region, in honor of a patron in Europe or a fellow traveler.
How did this territory, through the strange dividing line drawn by Pope Alexander VI across the American mainland, affect Portugal, and D. Joao III, when he divided Brazil into 12 captaincies, donating it as a fief to the famous historian Joao de Barros? The expedition, proposed by the latter to Alvares de Andrada and Aires da Cunha (1535), was wrecked on the reefs of Boqueirao; and so was the second donor, Luis de Melo. French Corsairs seized Maranhao Island (1594), and aroused the envy of King Philip II, who ordered the conquest of the island by Jeronimo de Albuquerque Coelho, the province's original conqueror.
This last one founded (1617) the city of Sao Luis do Maranhao, in the same place where the fortifications of the French were. This city soon became the capital of all because of the wreck of the first wave of settlers that occurred on the shores of Maranhao Island, which they thought was the mouth of the Amazon River. Berredo, it seems, attributes Maranhao to the name of an ancient Spanish race. The claim seems inadmissible due to the insistent question before the greatness of the river: Mar ah non? or the expression sea-dwarf; Even less likely it seems to me that the name comes from the Spanish word maranas, “tangles”.