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

Chapter 9: The state of the province before the conquest,   pp. 1-6


who lack a sense of grace cannot convey one. Disaster came on all. Jogo
Afonso had the worst fall, as could be expected of a madman. He wished to
be considered God on earth, he who had traded the true God for a god of gold.
I myself do not doubt that this insanity was much encouraged by liquor -
that liquor which was the cause of the most disobedient of Noahts sons
seeing his offspring so greatly cast down, and which the sage said would
make a man deny and lose his faith. JoAo Afonso asked his captains this
question: 'Gentlemen, what do you think of my good fortune, and of the gold
and other riches I possess?     It is difficult to kick against the pricks.
The guests of Jogo Afonso were well acquainted with his folly and extrav-
agance. They did not defer to him as he expected, since God did not permit
it. They replied pertinently, because they knew that he excluded God from
his affairs and that only a fool would ask this question.
(g)  D. Bernard.  To possess gold: burden, to love it; filth, to Jeave it;
it disticzses and torments (D. Bernard, Serm.1 Amn. Sanctorum). They
cannot hide from him the name of trade. "And knowest not that thou art
wretched, and miserable, and poor and blind and naked" (Revelation,3.17:
see also in Luke 12). Thus he died in the hospital of Santiago Island.
Gold. All precious things, like gold, silver, gems, pearls, etc, these
for God. On the road to Hell and nearer to it than Heaven he hides
these things like a sweeper (?). He only leaves Heaven in sight of man.
And the heavens only try to supply what God hides from him, which is :
"their tongue walketh through the earth" (Psalm 73,9),"whose
belly thou
fillest with thy hid treasure" (Psalm 17,14). Like dogs searching for
a bone in the dust. Thus Joio Afonso. I am not surprised because they
always go about together, like Saints Cosmas and Damian, Mouro and ouro
(Moors and money). The sun creates it in darkness, shapes it there,
just as you seek out dark places for badly made things. He hints
strongly about riches, speaks ill of them, but everyone covets them.
See Matthew 6, 24 and 28 and the commentaries : "No man can serve two
masters ... And why take ye thought for your raiment?"


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