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Vasco de Gama and his eldest brother Paulo prepare to embark on their expedition from Lisbon. Paulo served under Vasco, in command of the second ship. Paulo was the kinder of the two brothers on the expedition and would prove a good influence for the crews.
Vasco and his crew of 160 men set sail to find a path to India on July 8th, 1497, accompanied by navigator Bartholomeu Diaz, who would later depart the expedition to take command of the settlement of Lamina in New Guinea.
In December the expedition had reached the Rio do Infante, where they found new ground. Here, crew members started a mutiny as they wanted to return home instead of pressing on with the expedition.
We need to continue! We can't go home now!
We want to go home!
After the mutiny, Vasco put his pilot and master in irons for disobeying and turning crew against him. Paulo persuaded the crew to stay and obey the orders of Vasco while persuading Vasco to go easier on his crew.
You will obey your commander!
The crew was not prepared for the intensity of the new ocean, fearing it would interfere with their plans and the success of the expedition. A strong wind from the stern side would help the ships navigate and make it through the strong currents.
Vasco and his crew passed the coast of Delagoa Bay on Christmas, naming the area "Natal". When they touched down, Vasco and the crew were well received by natives. They had reached Quillimane in January, Mozambique by March, and Melinde by April 15. The King of Melinde supplied Vasco with a pilot, Ahmad Ibn Madjid, and they left across the Indian Ocean on April 24th. With the help of Ahmad, Vasco and crew would touch down in India on May 22nd.
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