Prince Henry "the Navigator": A Life

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Yale University Press, 2000 - Biography & Autobiography - 448 pages
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Henry the Navigator, fifteenth-century Portuguese prince and explorer, is a legendary, almost mythical figure in late medieval history. Considered along with Columbus to be one of the progenitors of modernity, , Prince Henry challenged the scientific assumptions of his age and was responsible for liberating Europeans from geographical restraints that had bound them since the Roman Empire's collapse. In this enthralling account of Henry's life -- the first biography of "The Navigator" in more than a century -- Peter Russell reaps the harvest of a lifelong study of Prince Henry. Making full use of documentary evidence only recently available, Russell reevaluates Henry and his role in Portuguese and European history.

Examining the full range of Prince Henry's activities, Russell discusses the explorer's image as an imperialist and as a maritime, mathematical, and navigational pioneer. He considers Henry's voyages of discovery in the African Atlantic, their economic and cultural consequences, and the difficult questions they generated regarding international law and papal jurisdiction. Russell demonstrates the degree to which Henry was motivated by the predictions of his astrologer -- an aspect of hie career little known until now -- and explains how this innovator, though firmly rooted in medieval ways of thinking and behaving, set in motion a current of change that altered European history.

  

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Review: Prince Henry "the Navigator": A Life

User Review  - Helena RD - Goodreads

I wanted to like this book because I liked Henry as a historical figure.What I found was a plodding book filled with flowery passages that didn't tell the story of him in what could have been done at ... Read full review

Contents

Matters of Nativity
13
The Force of Destiny Ceuta
29
The Crusader as Administrator Kings Lieutenant for the Affairs of Ceuta and Governor of the Order of Christ
59
Lord of the Isles
81
Beyond the Cape of No Return
109
A Just War? Prince Henrys Ambitions in the Sultanate of Morocco
135
Debacle at Tangier
167
Discovery Resumed The Portuguese Sahara
195
IV
291
V
316
VI
327
VII
345
VIII
365
IX
370
Notes
372
X
373

I
226
II
239
III
264

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Page vi - What mankind has lost and gained by the genius and designs of this prince, it would be long to compare, and very difficult to estimate. Much knowledge has been acquired, and much cruelty been committed; the belief of religion has been very little propagated, and its laws have been outrageously and enormously violated.
Page xiii - ... were the effects of the patience, wisdom, intellectual labor, and example of one man, backed by the pluck of a race of sailors, who, when we consider the means at their disposal, have been unsurpassed as adventurers in any country or in any age.
Page v - Henry was the true foundation of the Greatnesse, not of Portugall alone, but of the whole Christian World, in Marine Affaires, and especially of these Heroike endevours of the English (whose flesh and bloud hee was) which this ensuing Historic shall pre* See Dam.

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