Sunday, September 6, 2015

Portugal 200 Escudos Natal 1998

Portugal 200 Escudos Natal

500th Anniversary of the Discovery of Natal

        Nominal Valuce 
  Mintage           Year
         200 Escudos
     21.1 g
  36 mm
       500 000               1998

Journey to the Cape

The expedition set sail from Lisbon on 8 July 1497. It followed the route pioneered by earlier explorers along the coast of Africa via Tenerife and the Cape Verde Islands. After reaching the coast of present day Sierra Leone, Vasco da Gama took a course south into the open ocean, crossing the Equator and seeking the South Atlantic westerlies that Bartolomeu Dias had discovered in 1487. This course proved successful and on 4 November 1497, the expedition made landfall on the African coast. For over three months the ships had sailed more than 10,000 kilometres (6,000 mi) of open ocean, by far the longest journey out of sight of land made by that time. Monument to the Cross of Vasco da Gama at the Cape of Good Hope, South Africa

By 16 December, the fleet had passed the Great Fish River (Eastern Cape, South Africa) – where Dias had turned back – and sailed into waters previously unknown to Europeans. With Christmas pending, da Gama and his crew gave the coast they were passing the name Natal, which carried the connotation of "birth of Christ" in Portuguese.


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