Vasco da Gama and the Gateway to India

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Part 2: Fame and Fortune

He was known in some ports he visited in later years, however, as the bringer of cruelty. He didn't like to hear no for an answer, and he enforced some trade decrees with violence. He returned to Calicut in 1502 and took control of the port city by force, after discovering that the men he had left behind were dead and the trading post destroyed. He returned home again as a hero and was rewarded with the riches of a few Portuguese cities to go along with his already extensive wealth.

He enjoyed several years as a famous man but was called back to duty in 1524, at the head of another expedition to India, again to "maintain order." He died not long after he arrived, apparently of natural causes.

Vasco da Gama is remembered as not only the first European explorer to arrive in India but also as one of the men responsible for making Portugal a world power in the spice trade and colonization race.

Click here to read some of the famous explorer's writings.

First page > Looking for Fame > Page 1, 2

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