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Alvares, Manuel, 1526-1583, et al. / Ethiopia Minor and a geographical account of the Province of Sierra Leone : (c. 1615)

Ethiopia Minor: a geographical description of the Province and Kingdom of the Jalofo Heathon, part I, chapter I: the location and fertility of the land, and the nature and occupations of its inhabitants,   pp. [unnumbered]-14 ff.

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Now we are in the neighbourhood of Cape Verde. The coast
runs SW from the Senegal mouth to here, and then it forms a very
large bay as far as Cabo dos Mastos (Cap Naze) which is only 7 leagu
on.  Cape Verde standsLl4 404   and projects out into the sea,to the
West a very long headland which has sand-dunes on it anil a number of
palm-trees, some date palms, some common palms.   It lies eastward
of Santiago Island, which is otherwise called Cape Verde Island.
It is much better known to true cosmographers by the name first giver
it and derived from the name of its cape, but in Ethiopia it is
incomparably better known by the name of the glorious apostle /i.e.,
Sant' Iago orzJames7. It has itself a higher esteem for the name it
received from Heaven than for the name given for earthly reasons, the
latter being wholly inferior, much to be scorned and little worthy of
boast( b) I mean that (to call an island after) a cape, as if it
were wholly that, (is misleading). But I want this to be my last
"word on the coastal seas of this province, for the mainland invites
me to discuss its situation.
While the heavens showed themselves generous towards the
mainland in fertility of products, they were correspondingly mean in
providing it with adornment and requisite beauty. They deprived the
motherland of nearly everything in order to augment its principal
offspring,(that is, the islands)4 in whom they brought together all
dignity, elegance and grace. The unfortunate region has very little
of these, for while it lacks continuing breezes from the sea it is
over-rich in destructive heat from the sky, so that it is without
freshness, on account of the dry sands with which nature has covered
its wide plains. Yet these plains hold much promise, to judge by
experience with the normal crop, which is milho, so that no crop can
(b) Cape Island, Santiago Island, why.


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