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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The Earliest German Sources for West African History (1504-1509)
Author:Jones, AdamISNI
Geographic terms:Germany
West Africa
Subjects:historical sources
History and Exploration
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/40733026
Abstract:Nearly all of the German sources for the precolonial history of West Africa date from later than 1600. However, there exist two brief German accounts from the beginning of the 16th century, neither of which has received much attention from historians of West Africa. The first, written in the third person and present tense in 1504, is part of a description of the route to India, apparently based on information from the second expedition of Vasco da Gama (1502-1503). It was almost certainly written by Lucas Rem, a young merchant from Augsburg, who resided in Portugal from 1503 to 1508. The document, not published till 1861, refers briefly to the Cape Verde Islands and at somewhat greater length to Cape Verde itself. The second document, printed in 1509 and partially republished in facsimile in 1962, was written by Balthasar Sprenger, who belonged to the Welser trading house and took part in the third voyage to India (1505-1506). Sections of both documents are reproduced here with an English translation. Bibliogr., notes, ref.