Chapter 7 – The Commander
John I dies and Manuel I, young, ambitious and single, is set on the throne of Spain. And the Inquisition came to Portugal.
“… on December 4, 1496, every Jew in Portugal was ordered to leave the country within ten months on penalty of death. By the following Easter the synagogues had been boarded up, Hebrew books had been confiscated, and children had been torn from their families to be brought up in Christian households.” (P. 158)
Also, in light of the apocalyptic possibilities in the rapidly approaching year of 1500, Manuel renewed the Crusades so that Christianity would be spread throughout the world. First, of course, Jerusalem – Enter Vasco de Gama – destination India via Africa.
Chapters 8 and 9 – what an adventure down the west coast, around the cape and up the Muslim infested Swahili coast. There were feasts and fights and spies and traps, there were tales of mermaids and treasures, a sultan, spices and even – you betcha – Prester John.
Some crewman wrote this all down in a journal of sorts and Nigel names him “The Chronicler.”
They finally reached Mombasa and Ethiopia was inland – these people were Muslims but more friendly. India was just to the northeast.