Category: Portuguese Explorers

During what they called the Marvellous Century (O Século Maravilhoso) Portuguese Explorers did their part to discover the New World. Brazil, Africa, India, Ceylon, South-East Asia, Japan – the Portuguese Explorers got to them all.

Sinhalese and Tamil New World DBA Army List

Codice Casanatense Sinhalese Warriors - left

Sinhalese and Tamil (1494-1700) army list for New World DBA, my New World variant of DBA. The list covers the Sinhalese and Tamil kingdoms of Ceylon (modern Sri Lanka). Admittedly most of my information is about the Sinhalese and I assume the Tamil were similar. The New World DBA list is my equivalent to DBA II/42d, DBR III/21 and FoGR Hindu Indian, but differs from these in significant ways.

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2019 Reflections of a Megalomaniac Wargamer and Amateur Historian

Megalomaniac 2019

My Confessions of a Megalomaniac were my 2019 aspirations. How did I do?

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Armies and enemies of the Portuguese in Africa 1415-1670

1670-79 Kongo - Soldiers - Ezio Bassani

Armies and enemies of the Portuguese in Africa 1415-1670 This review of warfare focuses on south central Africa, from what is Angola (west central Africa) today to Mozambique (south-east Africa). This area is what the Portuguese referred to as a the Pink Map during the Scramble for Africa although I do a small diversion to Ethiopia. The review is not complete but I figured I should publish it as is and refine over time. This is the period before the Scramble for Africa, the early period of the Portuguese explorers – the period some historians call Medieval Africa.

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15mm Wargaming Figures for Malay and/or Sinhalese

Grumpy MAL01 Chieftain or officer

I have a long term interest in the Portuguese colonial exploration. Amongst a sea of possibilities, two locations stand out for me: Malacca on the Malaya peninsular and Sri Lanka. So I wondered what 15mm Wargaming Figures are available for Malay and/or Sinhalese. It happens that most people use the same figures for both so I can imagine a combined force that mixes the figure options. So here are the options and a bit of a commentary / comparison at the end.

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15mm Wargaming Figures to use for Samurai armies of the Sengoku period 1467-1603

Museum Miniatures sm01 Samurai Kawanakajima Swords

The fact that the Portuguese were in Japan is sufficient excuse for me to consider getting Samurai armies for the the Sengoku period. I thought I’d look at what 15mm figures are available. I found five ranges of figures available and one set of transfers/decals for Sashimono banners. Before I do a (brief) review of the figures I explain what is distinctive about the period I’m interested in.

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15mm Wargaming Figures to use for Portuguese Africa 1500-1700

First of the Portuguese range. This is from East Riding Miniatures: Grumpy Miniatures: Colonial Portuguese:

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Introduction to New World DBA

For many years I’ve been keen to wargame within the New World. Aztecs and Conquistadores took my fancy, as did Tupi and Portuguese Bandeira when I discovered them later on. But there are a few problems with this:

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Timeline of Portuguese Medieval Africa

My timeline for Portuguese Medieval Africa. The timeline, at least initially, is largely pieced together from Wikipedia excerpts.

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Painting Guide for Portuguese Medieval Africa

Some notes about costumes in Portuguese Medieval Africa.

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Portuguese in Medieval Africa

Sometime 1482-83 the Portuguese navigator Diogo Cão became the first European to reach the kingdom of Kongo (Wikipedia: Kingdom of Kongo). The Portuguese had an active presence in the region until 1975. Following Oliver and Atmore (2001) I call the early part of this period, 1250-1800, “Medieval Africa”

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Kingdoms the Portuguese Encountered in Southwest Africa

Sometime 1482-83 the Portuguese navigator Diogo Cão became the first European to reach the kingdom of Kongo (Wikipedia: Kingdom of Kongo). The Portuguese had an active presence in the region until 1975.

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15mm Wargame Figures for Colonial Brazil – Tupi and enemies

There is only one specialist Portuguese range of 15mm figures but there are a few Indian ranges.

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Painting Guide for Colonial Brazil – Tupi and their enemies

I’m trying to build up a painting guide for the Colonial Braziil. So far most of the details are for the Tupi.

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Rules for Naval Warfare from 1500 to 1850

My father, Gary Thomas, has always loved Naval warfare and hand crafted ships for both the Armada and Nelson periods. Although he has long since given up table top gaming and moved to computer games, in fond memory of those 1:1200 scale ships I thought I’d type up his rules. I have slightly edited the text, but the rule mechanisms remain unchanged.

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Portuguese in Japan

In 1542 three Portuguese became the first Europeans to visit Japan, when their ship sailed off course and reached the southern tip of Japanese Archipelago. This initiated the Nanban (“southern barbarian”) period of active commercial and cultural exchange between Japan and the West. During the next century, traders from Portugal, the Netherlands, England, and Spain arrived, as did Jesuit, Dominican, and Franciscan missionaries. In 1639, suspicious of Christianity and of Portuguese support of a local Japanese revolt, the shoguns of the Tokugawa period (1603–1867) prohibited all trade with foreign countries. Only a Dutch trading post at Nagasaki was permitted. Western

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