John II was the great continuer of Henry the Navigator’s policy of maritime and commercial expansion. At the same time that he strengthened the royal authority and organized the centralization of public administration, he promoted the continuation of the exploration of the African coast, the commerce of Guinea, shipbuilding and nautical knowledge. His dominant idea was to bring Portuguese ships to the eastern seas and to grab the monopoly of navigation to the Indies. To obtain information on India he sent two emissaries to Cairo (1486), who then had to set out in search of the legendary kingdom of the Priest John, who was believed to be in the south of Egypt and to be in commercial relations with India.
According to HOMEAGERLY.COM, the discoveries continued. In 1484 Diogo Cão, in the service of John II, entered Zaire (Congo River) and came to know the kingdom of Congo, whose sovereign accepted the Portuguese protectorate. In 1488 the Portuguese reached Benin and Bartolomeo Diaz, dubbed the head of the Storms, sailed in the Indian Ocean. It was precisely John II who gave that promontory the name of Cape of Good Hope. He was preparing the fleet for India when he died (1495): his successor, the “lucky” Emanuele, had nothing else to do but carry out the great project. It is said that, at the news of the death of the great king, Isabella the Catholic exclaimed: “The man is dead”.
The year before his death John II had stipulated with the Catholic kings the famous treaty of Tordesillas (7 June 1494), which established the division between Spaniards and Poeroghesi of the lands discovered and to be discovered, establishing the meridian at 370 as the dividing line. leagues west of the Cape Verde islands and leaving the lands west of this line to the Spaniards. The fixation of that meridian, made at the request of John II, suggests that he already knew the existence of Brazil. The maritime expedition planned by John II was completed two years after his death: Vasco da Gama, with four small ships, arrived at the Malabar coast in India in May 1498, after having visited the east coast of Africa. The way was thus discovered that placed the Portuguese in conditions of
In 1500 Emmanuel I sent another fleet of thirteen ships to India, under the command of Pedro Alvares Cabral, with the aim of establishing positions along the coast of the Indian Ocean, for the safety of Portuguese trade and for Christian propaganda. However, the fleet swerved west, discovering Brazil. Moreover, Duarte Pacheco, the pilot who wrote a history of the discoveries, claims to have landed in Brazil two years earlier. Cabral, continuing his journey to India, established a farm in Calicut, and, having acquired a large shipment of oriental products, returned home. Thus began the great commercial enterprise, in which the king was the great merchant and the Portuguese authorities were his cashiers, since the trade of the Indies was a royal monopoly.
In 1505 a viceroy, Francesco de Almeida, was sent to India, with a strong team, to maintain dominion of the sea and to exact a tribute on the traffic with the natives. He defeated the Sultan of Egypt in a naval battle and built several fortresses along the coast as landing points. The second viceroy, Alfonso de Albuquerque, organized the Portuguese empire of the East, conquering the lands necessary for commercial exploration, colonizing them, reducing various indigenous princes to tributaries of Portugal, building fortresses in places he could not colonize. He established a strategic triangle with the capture of Hormuz, key to the Persian Gulf (1507), of Goa (1510) and of Malacca (1511). The entire coast of Asia was explored. Among the governors who succeeded Albuquerque, Soares de Albergaria took Columbus in Ceylon, Nuno da Cunha occupied Diu, Antonio da Silveira defended it against the Turks in 1538, and in 1546 Giovanni de Mascarenhas sustained a second siege there; Constantine of Braganza took over Damão. Between 1521 and 1522, the Portuguese visited the Moluccas, then the Sunda Islands, and in 1526 they landed in New Guinea. As early as 1518 they had explored the seas of China and landed in Canton; in 1520 they sent ambassadors to Peking. Five years earlier, they had discovered Japan. As early as 1518 they had explored the seas of China and landed in Canton; in 1520 they sent ambassadors to Peking. Five years earlier, they had discovered Japan. As early as 1518 they had explored the seas of China and landed in Canton; in 1520 they sent ambassadors to Peking. Five years earlier, they had discovered Japan.
Almost all of these events fell in the time of Emanuele I’s successor, Giovanni III (1521-1557), who colonized Brazil, dividing the territory into captains, distributing these to various nobles with the task of populating, cultivating and defending them at his own expense., also paying some royalties to the crown.