Monday, 23 December 2013

The Bandeirantes

The bandeirantes were composed of Indians (slaves and allies), caboclos (people of Indian mixed with white), and some whites who were the captains of the Bandeiras. Members of the 16th–18th century South American slave-hunting expeditions called bandeiras (Portuguese for "flags"). Though their original purpose was to capture and force amerindians into slavery, the bandeirantes later began to focus their expeditions on finding gold, silver and diamond mines. They ventured into unmapped regions in search of profit and adventure. From 1580–1670 the Bandeirantes focused on slave hunting, then from 1670–1750 they focused on mineral wealth. Through these expeditions, the Bandeirantes also expanded Portuguese America from the small limits of the Tordesilhas Line to roughly the same territory as current Brazil. This expansion discovered mineral wealth that made the fortune of Portugal during the 17th and 18th centuries.


Gorges Smythe said...

That's a group I'd never heard of.

Keith H. Burgess said...

Me either Gorges.

Sara Seydak said...

Nice post!
Unforntunatly time has forgotten the importance of Portuguese influence in the world...
What I can say about the bandeirantes is that they were not only big part of the formation of today's Brazil, but also men and women seeking fortune and property beyond the still feudalistic Europe/Portugal. They would sign a contract to work for the crown and they could keep the land they "flagged". Of course that these pieces of land would always be at the border between "civilization" and the Amerindian country.
And if you pay attention to the Tordesilhas lign and the border of Brazil you can see that the bandeirantes went a lot further and somewhat stole the part of the world that should belong to Spain and not Portugal. ;)
Merry X-mass!

Keith H. Burgess said...

Thank you Sara, very interesting.
Regards & best wishes, Keith.