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Old 18th September 2007, 05:50 PM   #1
fernando
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Default Images of the Orient-Weapons included-XVI century

This is about the Portuguese Codice at the Casanatense Library.
I have found at the flea market this reproduction work printed by the National Press House in 1985.
For those not aware ( lkike i wasn't ) Cardinal Casanata ( 1620-1698 ) has donated 25 000 volumes and a large sum of money for the institution of an Italian public library, to be ran by Dominicans. These kept enlarging its contents and, when in 1873 the library became in controll of the Italian State, it already had 200 000 printings, including 2100 incunabulums and more that 5000 manuscripts, a hundred of them from the Renaissance period.
This is all to say that manuscript nr. 1889, concerns a Portuguese work. After being ignored for four centuries, this incunabulum came alight some fifty years ago, and from then on several studies took place and some of the images were already published. The codice is composed of 76 folios, containing as many aquarelles, with images of the most varied peoples the author found in Asia and also Africa. In Asia, only Japan is not represented, which means that this Album most probably dates from the XVI century. The legends, in lettering of such period, were no doubt inserted by the author. According tho the introductory text, he is not considered a genious as a painter, but very efective, and the material as such, considering the period it was made, has no paralel.
Apart from the introduction, the book has several supporting pages, relating to each image, with corresponding fascinating interpretations of the peoples depicted, often dedicated to how they were armed and would fight, written by the various chronicle authors of the same period. As most of the images represent armed persons, i here include some of them, considering that the shape of the weapons may not be faithfull, but still a subject of particular interest, as situations of this degree are not often observed. I have scanned all images to my computer, in a much larger and legible resolution. If anyone interested, i will be glad to either post in here some more examples in 800x600 format, or email larger ones, bunch by bunch, as the whole thing is very heavy.
Or maybe i set up some kind of link, if i learn how to do it.
I am sorry the examples i attach here are a few too many, but i found it rather dificult to select the ones for posting, as they all are fascinating ... at least to my eyes
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Old 18th September 2007, 05:53 PM   #2
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some more
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Old 18th September 2007, 07:47 PM   #3
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Default Photo's

Hey Fernando,

These are great images of 16th century India relating to costume, arm and armor and good refernce for anyone researching in that field. Would suggest possibly posting the photo's in a blog, you are allowed larger image sizes, its free, you only have to do it once and then anyone can access the information.

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Old 18th September 2007, 08:42 PM   #4
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Fernando, you are a step ahead of many of us searching pictures and descriptions like this, thank you very much for showing them.

As Rand suggests a blog or maybe CD or DVD, whatever you prefer, if translations are possible it would help a lot, if not the pictures are fine.
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Old 18th September 2007, 10:15 PM   #5
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Hi Rand
Me, creating a blog ? I don't know .
My first impulse was to check whether this material is interesting for some of the forum members. That's the easy part .
I never thaught of being a blogger

Hi Jens
I am glad you find this usefull.
I will surely think of something within my computer skills . Maybe the CD solution. No problem with the images. Translations are a bit more problematic, at first sight; the original legends are in XVI century Portuguese, the names of peoples races are hard to modernize and revert into english. I have to see if i can bring the whole bunch up to something decently understandable.
I will be back and tell what will happen.
The additional texts by the various period authors relative to the races in the images, amount to thousands of words. I would only sinthetize some of them in case somebody would require for a particular case/s, after observing all the images.
Let just see if there is someone else interested.
Kind regards
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Old 19th September 2007, 01:05 PM   #6
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Hi Jens
you have a PM from me.
Thanks
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Old 19th September 2007, 02:56 PM   #7
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Hi Fernando,
I have read your PM, and sent you a mail - thank you very much.
All the best
Jens
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Old 19th September 2007, 10:26 PM   #8
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Hi, Fernando
What a treasure-trove of graphic info! If you publish a translated version on CD, as someone suggests, I'll be in line to buy a copy.

I'm wondering if the author of this work intended this to be used as an intelligence source for subsequent Portuguese conquests in Africa and Asia.

Of course, we need to take artistic license into account when looking at some of the artwork. Note the poor war-elephant in one of the pictures, burdened with castellated howdah packed with what appears to be several squads of soldiers! Reminds me of my college days, trying to see how many drunk guys you can jam into and on a VW beetle and still be able to stay on the road under its own power.
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Old 19th September 2007, 11:34 PM   #9
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Hi Philip
The book had 1500 copies printed, and is actualy sold out.
I am emailing you the legends translation right now.
The CD will follow by mail.
The war elephant will take a bit longer, due to its load .
I will see if the support texts from the period include arms and armoury quotations
Regards
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Old 25th September 2007, 05:54 AM   #10
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Default European Influences

Fernando,

It seems the influence of Europe, in this case Portugal is not illustrated enough currently to makes its effect fully understood. Am sure there are records of visits to Islamic countries and what was sold or given to the rulers there of also.

Just saw one reference of Portugal envoys,

"The Safavid period: Shah Esma@¿^l I (q.v.) showed an interest in the purchase of firearms as early as 907/1502, soon after his enthronement (Scarcia Amoretti, pp. 9-10). Yet the Safavid army's failure to use artillery in the battle of Ùa@ldera@n (q.v.) in 920/1514 was largely responsible for its defeat. Shah Esma@¿^l reacted swiftly to remedy this and immediately following the battle appointed his wak^l, Solta@n-H®osayn, as tofang±^-ba@æ^, commander of the musketeers, putting him in charge of forming of a corps of tofang±^s (Bacque‚-Grammont, p. 165; Aubin, p. 118). The results were soon noticeable. The Portuguese envoys visiting Ka@æa@n in 1515-16 observed "forty musketeers bearing muskets of metal" among the welcoming party (Smith, p. 44). By 1517, Esma@¿^l's army is said to have included 8,000 musketeers, and Venetian reports from 1521 and 1522 speak of 12,000 and 15,000 to 20,000 arquebusiers (Scarcia Amoretti, pp. 377, 405-6, 533, 545). No figures are available for Shah T®ahma@sb I's reign, yet it is clear that the musketeer corps continued to be active, frequently taking part in campaigns and in the defense of fortresses (¿AÚlama@ra@-ye ˆa@h T®ahma@sb, pp. 64, 78, 123, 157, 181, 193, 204-5, 272, 280, 297, 314, 329, 332, 335, 341, 357, 369, 376-77). By the mid-17th century, observers put the number of musketeers in the Safavid army at 8,000 to 10,000 (Tavernier, I, p. 659) to 12,000 men (Chardin, V, p. 305; Tavernier noted that in times of need, their number could rise to 50,000)."

(an article by Rudi Matthee about the history of firearms in Iran)

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Old 25th September 2007, 03:21 PM   #11
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Two copies are up for sale at AbeBooks, but as few of us can read old Portuguese, the pictures Fernando have provided us with is far better than what we had before – nothing like this. The poor elephant is a beauty – in those days, elephants really had to work hard for a living. I have had to change some of my believes, like the spear shown on plate XXXVII. I would
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Old 25th September 2007, 06:20 PM   #12
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Hi Fernando
great pictures....very interesting topic, thanks for posting

Regards David
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Old 25th September 2007, 08:09 PM   #13
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Default Portuguese in Asia

Hi Rand
Here are some interesting references, written in english, with lots of action.
http://www.columbia.edu/itc/mealac/...sect01to03.html
regards
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Old 25th September 2007, 08:16 PM   #14
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Hi David
Glad you like it
Here are some more pictures, hoping the moderators don't get upset with such intensity.
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Old 25th September 2007, 09:50 PM   #15
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In picture 71 and some others, the guy has got a keris, as also these are mentioned to be used by a couple races, in the additional texts.
Material worth to be posted in Keris Warung Kopi
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Old 25th September 2007, 11:50 PM   #16
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Pics V, XVII and LIX show Indian blades of archaic forms. these are illustrated in the Rawson's book only as siluettes: likely the blades themselves were not available. But here they are, in action, witnessed by the contemporary traveller!
Fascinating!!!!!
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Old 26th September 2007, 04:56 AM   #17
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Am finding the different plants in each picture a type of reference to help identify origin and am sure at the time this was made the flora where an important part of discovery.

The costume and designs on the costume are also a source for identifying color and pattern for a region. Is really quite an interesting series of pictures to study.

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Old 26th September 2007, 09:34 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ariel
Pics V, XVII and LIX show Indian blades of archaic forms. these are illustrated in the Rawson's book only as siluettes: likely the blades themselves were not available. But here they are, in action, witnessed by the contemporary traveller!
Fascinating!!!!!


Pic V - People so called Fartaquis. They inhabit the coast of Arabia. Very good horsemen and very belicose ( author's legend). With very beautyfull swords ( Duarte Barbosa) , they spend almost their life in war. they also fight as pay soldiers, like the Suitz. They use bows, lances, swords and laudeis=body armour ( Kings letter after Tristão da Cunha in 1508 ).

Pic XVII - Parsia People from the kingdom of Ormuz. Moors ( author´s legend). Persianos are men on horse, armed with all arms, garnished with well laboured swords ( Tomé Pires).

Pic LIX - People so called Chingalas, from the island of Ceylon, where cynamon comes from ( author's legend). It is normal that they use the rodela=round shield and the sword, once acording to Pyrard de Laval they fabricate all sorts of arms, like arquebuzes, swords, pikes, and rodelas, which are the best made and esteemed in India. They bear two and half span swords, which they call calacurras ( João Ribeiro, in the defence of Ceylon against the Dutch.
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Old 26th September 2007, 10:05 PM   #19
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Hi Jens

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jens Nordlunde
Two copies are up for sale at AbeBooks, but as few of us can read old Portuguese, the pictures Fernando have provided us with is far better than what we had before – nothing like this. The poor elephant is a beauty – in those days, elephants really had to work hard for a living. I have had to change some of my believes, like the spear shown on plate XXXVII. I would


Just curious. Which would be the missing words of your posting?!
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Old 28th September 2007, 08:10 AM   #20
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Default PDF Files.

It looks like i have managed,with help from a coleague, to reformat and transform all the images into three part PDF files. I tested the thing on my own mailbox ant they seem to be sendable. Each image size is 1020x768,which is already larger than the condensed ones in the book,although quite clear ... i don´t remember the real size of these folios, the book is at home and i am not there.
Somebody please "volunteer" to accept these pictures and give me an email adress, so that i can try if it works.
Thanks and regards.
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Old 28th September 2007, 12:49 PM   #21
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Hi Fernando,

It should have said ’I would not have expected the spear type to be that old.’ Sorry.

You are very welcome to try me, you have my mail address.

Jens
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Old 28th September 2007, 06:53 PM   #22
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Default Flora

More than one person made coments about the flowers in the paintings, as a potential track to identify the places and also its possible simbology in the arms decorations used in the period.
Herewith some thaughts and also parts translated from the book introduction, with (or without) references in the area.

No mention in the legends or in texts about flowers. The only mention is on image 17, where this book introducer compares this flower with vegetable ornamentation on images 4, 7, 9, 10 and 12.
The additional texts, basically used for confirmation (or some discrepancy) of the codice original author assumptions, is largely dedicated to the
way these Peoples usually dressed and secondly to the arms they used, apart from lateral contextual events.
Therefore flowers are used as landscape, and not necessarily belonging to Peoples lands in question ( my saying). According to this book introduction, one of the discussions had by the various experts was, besides whether the author of the folios did them to satisfy someone's order or by his own iniative, and another was where or from where he has made them. One assumed fact is that he forcingly has been a determined time around the area, as this work could only be made at sight. Schurhammer, the guy that took the codice from oblivion, opines that the greatest part was painted in Goa and Cambaia, but the author must have also been in the Malabar, and most probably in Ormuz and Malaca, which is pertinent, given the relative facility whith which Portuguese dislocated trough the Orient. On the other hand he wouldn't need, so to say, to go out of Goa to realize his work as, by one side, there were Kafres, Arabians, Abexins, Guzerates and other Peoples to the service of Portuguese in India and, by other side, merchants from the
most diverse nations of the Orient, aproached the main trade centers. Varthema informs that right in the beginning of the XVI century there was
in Calicut merchants not only from Turkey, Siria, Arabia Felix, Abissinia and Persia, but also from Guzerate, Malabar, Ceylon, Samatra, Pegu and Siam.
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Old 13th April 2008, 06:14 PM   #23
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I have just received a copy of Hindu Arms and Ritual, by Elgood ... better late than never
Among several mentions to the Portuguese presence in India, a specific quotation on this Casanatense codice can be read in page 17 of Elgood's work ... something i would never guess.
... And i thaught i was breaking the news ...result of my illiteracy
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Old 14th April 2008, 09:37 AM   #24
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Fernando,

It is true that the Casanatense codice was not exactly 'discovered' by you.

However it is you who brought it forward to the forums. In fact I found it so useful that I added a separate column to your excel sheet where I filled in my remarks about each folio I found interesting. I was able to fill in several gaps there as I have the advantage of being in India where many of the folios were based on.

Your post may not have been a discovery but it sure was a revelation!

Nidhi
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Old 14th April 2008, 09:56 AM   #25
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Thank you for you nice words, Nidhin
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Old 14th April 2008, 03:58 PM   #26
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A VERY INTERESTING LOT OF PHOTO'S I ENJOYED LOOKING AT THEM .
IN YOUR PHOTO #1XX1 THE WARRIOR IS SHOWN WITH A KERIS AND A BLOWGUN WITH DARTS HELD IN HIS HAND. THE DARTS ARE MADE TO LOOK MORE LIKE SMALL ARROWS THAN THEY PROBABLY WOULD IN REALITY BUT IF THE ARTIST HAD NOT DONE IT THAT WAY I PROBABLY WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN ABLE TO FIGURE IT OUT. THE UPPER END ALSO IS EXPANDED FOR A BETTER SEAL WHEN BLOWING AS FOUND IN SOME TYPES OF BLOWGUN. I LOOKED AT THE ARTISTS EXAMPLES OF BOWS BEING USED AND THAT HELPED ELIMINATE THE POSSIBILITY OF IT BEING A BOW AND ARROWS.

IN ANOTHER PICTURE XV11 THERE IS A STRANGE ITEM, THERE IS A LADY ON A HORSE AND A SERVANT IS STANDING BEHIND THE HORSE CARRYING A STRANGE THING THAT KIND OF LOOKS LIKE A LARGE AX BLADE. PERHAPS THE DEADLY AX PURSE
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Old 14th April 2008, 10:03 PM   #27
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Thanks Barry.
In watercolour VXXI, depicting the Dachens from the island of Sumatra, the author's legend mentions the use of blowguns with small poisonous arrows.
So (at least) in his perspective the arrows were intentionally small. Other period authors included in the same book confirm the "herbed" arrows, but don't refer their dimensions.
In watercolour XIV, while the author's legend only refers they are Turkmen from Persia ( Ormuz ), under the kingdom of Xeque Ismael, other period authors mention the bravery of the women, who were better riders than many men and that, these Moors from Ormuz were accompanied by pages who, by their state of honour, carried barrels of water or algarafas ( Arabic to old Portuguese for bottle ) adorned with silver. It all indicates that the strange things painted by the author are water containers.
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