WPC: Monument


It’s a fascinating topic this week, and to check out other portrayals of the ‘monumental’, click on the link here.

The information board tells us that this monument pays tribute to the Portuguese seafarers of the 15th century who rounded the Cape of Good Hope in the late 1400’s.  As they ventured along their journeys of exploration they left stone padraos to mark their accomplishment; all under the guise of the Christian cross.  Was this era of colonial expansionism and exploitation a shameful part of history, or one which we should be paying tribute to? What do you think?


9 thoughts on “WPC: Monument

  1. Portuguese sailed the Atlantic Ocean, which may take a month to three months, past the Cape of Good Hope Africa, towards the Straits of Malacca. From here to the continued exploration of the Maluku Islands (Indonesia) to find spices, gold equivalent commodity at the time.
    Period 1511-1526, for 15 years, the Indonesian archipelago became an important maritime port for the Portuguese Empire, which became regular maritime route to the island of Sumatra, Java, Banda, and the Moluccas.
    Many traces of the history of which to this day is still maintained by local communities in the archipelago. You have pretty good picture. Thank you.

  2. Well, for the poor people it must have been the Cape of no hope at that time, but as Lucid Gypsy says, we have no mean to change the past. But even more so, we should all stay awake for the present and not look away. Thank you for always giving us something to ponder on, Liz.

    1. Hi Dina, yes for the Khoi, San, and Strandlopers of the time it was a bitter history. The victors shape the annals of history; the vanquished disappear. The past may have a bearing on the present, but isn’t it amazing how humanity keeps making the same mistakes?!

  3. Cape of No Hope – that’s a really interesting comment isn’t it?! I guess spreading Christianity both enhanced and destroyed simultaneously. They brought education, hygiene, new medicines along with their indoctrination and often times destruction of local culture. One wonders what the world would be like today if there had been no empire building anywhere.

    1. It’s a pretty accurate description for the indigenous people of the time. But no empire building seems an impossible scenario for man with his innate desire to dominate and hold the competitive edge?! Would that there could be an egalitarian society ruling with equanimity??

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