Invasion of Martinique (1809)
The invasion of Martinique of 1809 was a successful British amphibious operation against the French West Indian island of Martinique that took place between 30 January and 24 February 1809 during the West Indies Campaign 1804–1810 of the Napoleonic Wars. Martinique, like nearby Guadeloupe, was a major threat to British trade in the Caribbean, providing a sheltered base from which privateers and French Navy warships could raid British shipping and disrupt the trade routes that maintained the British economy; the islands provided a focus for larger scale French operations in the region and in the autumn of 1808, following the Spanish alliance with Britain, the Admiralty decided to order a British squadron to neutralise the threat, beginning with Martinique. The British mustered an overwhelming force under Vice-Admiral Sir Alexander Cochrane and Lieutenant-General George Beckwith, who collected 29 ships and 10,000 men – four times the number of French regular forces garrisoning Martinique. Landing in force on both the southern and northern coasts of the island, British troops pushed inland, defeating French regulars in the central highlands and routing local militia units in the south of the island.
By 9 February, the entire island was in British hands except Fort Desaix, a powerful position intended to protect the capital Fort-de-France, bypassed during the British advance. In a siege lasting 15 days the Fort was bombarded, the French suffering 200 casualties before surrendering; the capture of the island was a significant blow to French power in the region, eliminating an important naval base and denying safe harbours to French shipping in the region. The consequences of losing Martinique were so severe, that the French Navy sent a battle squadron to reinforce the garrison during the invasion. Arriving much too late to affect the outcome, these reinforcements were intercepted off the islands and scattered during the Action of 14–17 April 1809: half the force failed to return to France. With Martinique defeated, British attention in the region turned against Guadeloupe, captured the following year. During the Napoleonic Wars, the British Royal Navy was charged with limiting the passage and operations of the French Navy, French merchant ships and French privateers.
To achieve this objective, the Royal Navy imposed a system of blockades on French ports the major naval bases at Toulon and Brest. This stranglehold on French movement off their own coastline affected the French colonies, including those in the West Indies, as their produce could not reach France and supplies and reinforcements could not reach them without the risk of British interception and seizure; these islands provided excellent bases for French ships to raid the British trade routes through the Caribbean Sea: in previous conflicts, the British had countered the threat posed by French West Indian colonies by seizing them through force, such as Martinique, captured by armed invasion in 1762 and 1794. An attempt in 1780 was defeated by a French battle squadron at the Battle of Martinique. By 1808 there were no French squadrons at sea: any that left port were eliminated or driven back in a series of battles, culminating at the disastrous defeat at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805; the fleet, destroyed at Trafalgar had visited Martinique the year before and was the last full scale French fleet to visit the Caribbean for the rest of the war.
With the bulk of the French Navy confined to port, the British were able to strike directly at French colonies, although their reach was limited by the significant resources required in blockading the French coast and so the size and quality of operations varied widely. In 1804, Haiti fell to a nationalist uprising supported by the Royal Navy, in 1806 British forces secured most of the northern coast of South America from its Dutch owners. In 1807 the Danish West Indies were invaded and in 1808 Spain changed sides and allied with Britain, while Cayenne fell to an improvised force under Captain James Lucas Yeo in January 1809; the damage done to the Martinique economy during this period was severe, as British frigates raided coastal towns and shipping, merchant vessels were prevented from trading Martinique's produce with France or allied islands. Disaffection grew on the island among the emancipated black majority, during the summer of 1808 the island's governor, Vice-amiral Louis Thomas Villaret de Joyeuse, sent urgent messages back to France requesting supplies and reinforcements.
Some of these messages were intercepted by British ships and the low morale on Martinique was brought to the attention of the Admiralty, who ordered their commander on the West Indian Station, Vice-Admiral Sir Alexander Cochrane, to raise an expeditionary force from the ships and garrisons available to him and invade the island. During the winter of 1808–1809, Cochrane gathered his forces off Carlisle Bay, accumulating 29 ships and 10,000 soldiers under the command of Lieutenant-General George Beckwith. Landings were planned on the island's southern and northern coasts, with the forces ordered to converge on the capital Fort-de-France; the soldiers would be supported and supplied by the Royal Navy force, which would shadow their advance offshore. Beckwith's army was more than twice the size of the French garrison, half of, composed of an untrained and irregular black militia which could not be relied on in combat. News of the poor state of Martinique's defences reached France during the autumn of 1808.
Attempts were made to despatch reinforcements and urgently needed food supplies, but on 30 October 1808 Circe captured the 16-gun French Curieux class brig Palinure. The British captured the frigate Thétis in the Bay of Biscay at the Action of 10
Blockade of Saint-Domingue
The Blockade of Saint-Domingue was a naval campaign fought during the first months of the Napoleonic Wars, in which a series of British Royal Navy squadrons blockaded the French-held ports of Cap Français and Môle-Saint-Nicolas on the Northern coast of the French colony of Saint-Domingue, shortly to become Haiti following the conclusion of the Haitian Revolution on 1 January 1804. In the summer of 1803, when war broke out between the United Kingdom and the French Consulate, Saint-Domingue had been completely overrun by Haitian forces under the command of Jean-Jacques Dessalines. In the north of the country, the French forces were isolated in the two large ports of Cap Français and Môle-Saint-Nicolas and a few smaller settlements, all supplied by a French naval force based at Cap Français. At the outbreak of war on 18 May 1803, the Royal Navy despatched a squadron under Sir John Duckworth from Jamaica to cruise in the region, seeking to eliminate communication between the French outposts and to capture or destroy the French warships based in the colony.
On 28 June, the squadron encountered a French convoy from Les Cayes off Môle-Saint-Nicolas, capturing one ship although the other escaped. Two days an independently sailing French frigate was chased down and captured in the same waters. On 24 July another British squadron intercepted the main French squadron from Cap Français, attempting to break past the blockade and reach France; the British, led by Commodore John Loring gave chase, but one French ship of the line and a frigate escaped. Another ship of the line was trapped against the coast and captured after coming under fire from Haitian shore batteries; the remainder of the squadron was forced to fight two more actions on their return to Europe, but did reach the Spanish port of Corunna. On 3 November, the frigate HMS Blanche captured a supply schooner near Cap Français, by the end of the month the garrison was starving, agreeing terms with Dessalines that permitted them to safely evacuate provided they had left the port by 1 December. Commodore Loring however refused the French permission to sail.
The French commander Rochambeau procrastinated until the last possible moment, but was forced to surrender to the British commander. One of Rochambeau's ships was wrecked while leaving the harbour, but was saved by a British lieutenant acting alone, who not only rescued the 900 people on board, but refloated the ship. At Môle-Saint-Nicolas, General Louis de Noailles refused to surrender and instead sailed to Havana, Cuba in a fleet of small vessels on 3 December, but was intercepted and mortally wounded by a Royal Navy frigate; the few remaining French-held towns in Saint-Domingue surrendered soon afterwards, on 1 January 1804 the new independent nation of Haiti was declared. During the French Revolutionary Wars, the wealthy French colony of Saint-Domingue on the western half of the island of Hispaniola in the Caribbean Sea was the scene of heavy fighting. In addition to unsuccessful British and Spanish invasions, the colony was wracked by a brutal civil war as the black population of newly emancipated slaves, under the command of Toussaint Louverture, fought forces from the French Republic before allying themselves with the Republic against foreign invaders.
By 1801, Louverture had seized control of the entire island, including much of the neighbouring colony of Santo Domingo. Louverture pledged allegiance to France, declaring himself the island's governor. However, following the Peace of Amiens in Europe that brought an end to the French Revolutionary Wars in 1802, French First Consul Napoleon Bonaparte sent a large expeditionary force to Saint-Domingue under General Charles Leclerc. Leclerc's army had some initial success and Louverture was captured after signing a peace treaty with the French general dying in unclear circumstances in a French prison. However, following Louverture's arrest and under threat of the restoration of slavery, the Haitian general Jean Jacques Dessalines renewed the campaign against the French. Leclerc and much of his army died in an epidemic of yellow fever in the autumn of 1802, command fell to the Vicomte de Rochambeau, whose forces were driven back into a few well fortified towns, relying for communication and supply on maritime links.
In May 1803, the situation in Haiti deteriorated still further for the French when Britain and France once again went to war, after a peace lasting just fifteen months. In preparation for the coming conflict, the French had ordered a number of ships to sail from their southern ports in Saint-Domingue, the frigate Franchise sailing en flute from Port-au-Prince on 3 May. Franchise was however intercepted in the Bay of Biscay by a British battle squadron and captured on 28 May, as was the corvette Bacchante on 25 June which had sailed in April; the remaining French naval forces in the colony were consolidated at the port of Cap Français. The Royal Navy was well prepared for the renewed conflict, with a squadron of ships of the line and numerous frigates based at the Jamaica station, the Navy's western Caribbean base, under Rear-Admiral John Thomas Duckworth. On 18 June 1803 two squadrons were sent to enact a blockade of the principal northern ports in French hands, Cap Français to the east and Môle-Saint-Nicolas to the west.
The first squadron, which cruised off Môle-Saint-Nicolas consisted of the 74-gun ships of the line HMS Cumberland under Captain Henry William Bayntun, HMS Goliath under Captain Charles Brisbane and HMS Hercule under the acting command of Lieutenant John B. Hills; the second squadron, assigned to the blockade of Cap Français, was commanded by Commodore John Loring in HMS Bellerophon and included HMS Elephant under Captain George Dundas, HMS Theseus under Captain John Bligh and
A privateer is a private person or ship that engages in maritime warfare under a commission of war. The commission known as a letter of marque, empowers the person to carry on all forms of hostility permissible at sea by the usages of war, including attacking foreign vessels during wartime and taking them as prizes. Captured ships were subject to condemnation and sale under prize law, with the proceeds divided between the privateer sponsors, shipowners and crew. A percentage share went to the issuer of the commission. Since robbery under arms was once common to seaborne trade, all merchant ships were armed. During war, naval resources were auxiliary to operations on land so privateering was a way of subsidizing state power by mobilizing armed ships and sailors. In practice the legality and status of privateers has been vague. Depending on the specific government and the time period, letters of marque might be issued hastily and/or the privateers might take actions beyond what was authorized by the letters.
The privateers themselves were simply pirates who would take advantage of wars between nations to gain semi-legal status for their enterprises. By the end of the 19th century the practice of issuing letters of marque had fallen out of favor because of the chaos it caused and its role in inadvertently encouraging piracy. A privateer is similar to a mercenary except that, whereas a mercenary group receives a set fee for services and has a formal reporting structure within the entity that hires them, a privateer acts independently with no compensation unless the enemy's property is captured; the letter of marque of a privateer would limit activity to one particular ship, specified officers. The owners or captain would be required to post a performance bond. In the United Kingdom, letters of marque were revoked for various offences; some crews were treated as harshly as naval crews of the time, while others followed the comparatively relaxed rules of merchant ships. Some crews were made up of professional merchant seamen, others of pirates and convicts.
Some privateers ended up becoming pirates, not just in the eyes of their enemies but of their own nations. William Kidd, for instance, began as a legitimate British privateer but was hanged for piracy. While privateers such as Kidd were commissioned to hunt pirates, privateering itself was blamed for piracy. Privateering commissions were easy to obtain during wartime but when the war ended and privateers were recalled, many refused to give up the lucrative business and turned to piracy. Colonial officials exacerbated the problem by issuing commissions to known pirates, giving them legitimacy in exchange for a share of the profits or open bribes; the French Governor of Petit-Goave gave buccaneer Francois Grogniet blank privateering commissions, which Grogniet traded to Edward Davis for a spare ship so the two could continue raiding Spanish cities under a guise of legitimacy. New York Governors Jacob Leisler and Benjamin Fletcher were removed from office in part for their dealings with pirates such as Thomas Tew, to whom Fletcher had granted commissions to sail against the French, but who ignored his commission to raid Mughal shipping in the Red Sea instead.
Kidd himself committed piracy during his privateering voyage and was tried and executed upon his return. Boston minister Cotton Mather lamented after the execution of pirate John Quelch: "Yea, Since the Privateering Stroke, so degenerates into the Piratical. Privateers who were considered legitimate by their governments include: Francis Drake Pieter van der Does Amaro Pargo Hayreddin Barbarossa Robert Surcouf Lars Gathenhielm Entrepreneurs converted many different types of vessels into privateers, including obsolete warships and refitted merchant ships; the investors would arm the vessels and recruit large crews, much larger than a merchantman or a naval vessel would carry, in order to crew the prizes they captured. Privateers cruised independently, but it was not unknown for them to form squadrons, or to co-operate with the regular navy. A number of privateers were part of the English fleet that opposed the Spanish Armada in 1588. Privateers avoided encounters with warships, as such encounters would be at best unprofitable.
Still, such encounters did occur. For instance, in 1815 Chasseur encountered HMS St Lawrence, herself a former American privateer, mistaking her for a merchantman until too late; the United States used mixed squadrons of privateers in the American Revolutionary War. Following the French Revolution, French privateers became a menace to British and American shipping in the western Atlantic and the Caribbean, resulting in the Quasi-War, a brief conflict between France and the United States, fought at sea, to the Royal Navy's procuring Bermuda sloops to combat the French privateers; the practice dated to at least the 13th century but the word itself was coined sometime in the mid-17th century. England, the United Kingdom, used privateers to great effect and suffered much from other nations' privateering. During the 15th century, "piracy became an increasing problem and merchant communities such as Bristol began to resort to self-hel
Cayenne is the capital city of French Guiana, an overseas region and department of France located in South America. The city stands on a former island at the mouth of the Cayenne River on the Atlantic coast; the city's motto is "fert aurum industria", which means "work brings wealth". At the 2016 census, there were 137,964 inhabitants in the metropolitan area of Cayenne, 60,580 of whom lived in the city of Cayenne proper. Cayenne is located on the banks of the estuary of the Cayenne River on the Atlantic Ocean; the city occupies part of the Cayenne Island. It is located 268 kilometres from 64 kilometres from Kourou. Distances to some cities: Paris: 7,100 kilometres. Fort-de-France, capital of Martinique: 1,500 kilometres. Paramaribo, capital of Suriname: 342 kilometres to the northwest. Macapá, capital of the state of Amapá, Brazil: 554 kilometres to the southeast. Under the Köppen climate classification, Cayenne has a tropical monsoon climate. Average high and low temperatures are nearly identical throughout the course of the year averaging about 30 °C and 23 °C respectively.
Cayenne sees copious precipitation during the year. The city features a lengthy wet season and a short dry season; the dry season only covers two months of the year while the wet season covers the remainder of the year. Precipitation is seen during the dry season, a trait seen in places featuring tropical monsoon climates. Cayenne averages 3,750 millimetres of rain each year. Cayenne is a commune of the French Republic and as such it is ruled by a mayor and a municipal council; the current mayor is Marie-Laure Phinéra-Horth, a former member of the Guianese Socialist Party, supported by various left-wing parties. Marie-Laure Phinéra-Horth has been mayor of Cayenne since 2010, she is the daughter of a former president of the General Council of French Guiana, Stéphan Phinéra-Horth, from the Guianese Socialist Party, who ruled the department of French Guiana from 1994 to 1998. As in the rest of France, the small size of the commune of Cayenne, which doesn't cover the entire urban area of Cayenne, has led to the creation of an intercommunal authority which groups Cayenne and 5 suburban communes: the communauté d'agglomération du Centre Littoral.
Marie-Laure Phinéra-Horth has been president of the communauté d'agglomération du Centre Littoral since 2014. This intercommunal structure, which levies its own taxes, is the sole authority in charge of refuse collection, water supply and sewage treatment, urban planning, public transports over the 5,087 km² of Cayenne and its suburbs; until 2015, the commune of Cayenne was divided in six cantons, but these were abolished in 2015 when the department and the region of French Guiana were abolished and replaced by the French Guiana Territorial Collectivity. Ignored by Spanish explorers, who found the region too hot and poor to be claimed, the region was not colonized until 1604, when a French settlement was founded. However, it was soon destroyed by the Portuguese, who were determined to enforce the provisions of the Treaty of Tordesillas. French colonists returned in 1643 and founded Cayenne, but they were forced to leave once more following Amerindian attacks. In 1664, France succeeded at establishing a permanent settlement at Cayenne.
Over the next decade the colony changed hands between the French and English, before being restored to France. It was captured by an Anglo-Portuguese force at the invasion of Cayenne in 1809 and administered from Brazil until 1814, when it was returned to French control, it was used as a French penal colony from 1854 to 1938. The city's population has grown owing to high levels of immigration as well as a high birthrate. Average population growth of the Cayenne metropolitan area: 1961-1967: +1,122 people per year 1967-1974: +1,079 people per year 1974-1982: +1,799 people per year 1982-1990: +2,206 people per year 1990-1999: +2,812 people per year 1999-2006: +3,054 people per year 2006-2011: +1,686 people per year 2011-2016: +3,331 people per year The places of birth of the 121,490 residents in the Cayenne metropolitan area at the 2012 census were the following: 56.5% were born in French Guiana 12.0% in Metropolitan France 3.0% in Martinique 1.4% in Guadeloupe 0.3% in other parts of Overseas France 26.7% in foreign countries.
The principal illnesses that cause mortality are circulatory and parasitic diseases, as well as cancer. A branch of the Pasteur Institute in Paris, located in Cayenne, conducts research on tropical and endemic local diseases and is renowned throughout Latin America. Life expectancy averages about 76 years for men and 83 years for women. Cayenne is an important seaport in South America; the major port of Dégrad des Cannes, is on the estuary of the river Mahury, replacing Larivot and the Îles du Salut. Timber, rosewood essence and gold are exported in small quantities. In the mid-1960s sugarcane and pineapple were planted around the city, a pineapple cannery an
Brazilian Marine Corps
The Brazilian Marine Corps is the land combat branch of the Brazilian Navy. Deployed nationwide, along the coast, in the riverine regions of Amazon and in the Pantanal, in peacetime it provides for the security of Naval installations and aids isolated populations through civic action programs in the Naval Districts. Abroad, it provides security for the Embassies of Brazil in Algeria, in Paraguay, in Haiti and in Bolivia, it has participated in all of the armed conflicts in the Military history of Brazil and domestic. The badge consists of a fouled anchor superimposed over a pair of crossed rifles, it is worn on the Ribbon Bonnet. The Brazilian Marines trace their origin to 1808 when the troops of the Royal Brigade of the Navy arrived in Brazil when Mary I of Portugal and her son Prince Regent John relocated themselves to the Portuguese South American territory during the Napoleonic Wars in Europe. In retaliation for the invasion of Portugal, Prince Regent, Dom João ordered the invasion of French Guiana, whose capital, was captured on January 14, 1809.
After Brazilian independence the force underwent various reorganisations. It was involved in several wars and campaigns: the War of the Independence of Brazil, conflicts in the River Plate basin, the Paraguayan War. During the latter the Corps won distinction in both the Battle of Riachuelo and in the taking of Humaitá; the CFN if has participated in the humanitarian actions promoted by UN in such diverse theatres of operation as Bosnia, Mozambique, Angola, East Timor and in Haiti. With about 15,000 men, all volunteers, professionals in combat on land and sea, its mission is to guarantee the projection of the naval power on land, by means of landings from Navy ships and helicopters; the Corps is an integral part of the Navy, encompassing about one third of its manpower. Ranks are naval instead of Army, with the exception of Privates. In the case of Brazil this is a complex mission, since the country has a territory of about 8,5 million km², a coast of more than 7,400 km with many oceanic islands, a navigable waterways network of 50,000 km.
This last one includes the Brazilian Amazon. To cover climates and natural landscapes so diversified as Pampas of Rio Grande do Sul, pantanal of Mato Grosso do Sul, deserts of the Northeast region and Amazon rainforest, demands a training of the highest standards and versatility. Therefore, there are units trained in demolition techniques, special operations, combat in forests and ice, helicopter-transported operations. Trained as a Fast Deployment Unit with the sending of Brazilian military observers integrating the Peacekeeping Forces of the United Nations, the Marines have made their presence in distinctive areas of conflict as El Salvador, Angola, Moçambique, Peru, East Timor and Haiti. On March 30, 2014 security forces in Rio de Janeiro occupied since the dawn of day, the set of Shantytown Tide in the North Zone of Rio. Region is being prepared to receive the Pacifying Police Unit, Brazilian Marine Corps provide support with 21 armored vehicles and 500 men; the Corps headquarters is located in Ilha das Cobras, Rio de Janeiro.
The Fleet Marine Force includes the expeditionary component of the corps and consists of the following units: 1st Amphibious Division of brigade size with three marine infantry battalions (Batalhão de Fuzileiros Navais as its main fighting force, along with the following: Command and Control Battalion, 1st "Riachuelo" Marine Infantry Battalion 2nd "Humaitá" Marine Infantry Battalion 3rd "Paissandu" Marine Infantry Battalion Marine Artillery Battalion Marine Armoured Vehicle Battalion Marine Tactical Air Control and Air Defence Battalion Governor's Island Marine Base, Reinforcement Troop located in Ilha das Flores in São Gonçalo, composed of the following: Marine Engineer Battalion, Marine Logistic Battalion, Amphibious Vehicles Battalion, Police Company Landing Support Company Isle of Flowers Marine Base, Landing Troop Command, located at Duque de Caxias - provides the means to command and administer the Command of the Fleet Marine Force and to local units Marine Special Operations Battalion "Tonelero" A unit similar to US Marine Corps Force Reconnaissance, formed in 1957 and structured for high risk operations.
Its mission is to destroy or damage prominent objectives in defended areas, capture or rescue personnels or equipment, seize installations, obtain information and produce psychological effects. Rio Meriti Marine Base, located in Duque de Caxias ships detachments "Marine Groups" (Grupamentos de Fuzileiros Navais are subordinate to the Naval Districts (
Colonial Brazil comprises the period from 1500, with the arrival of the Portuguese, until 1815, when Brazil was elevated to a kingdom in union with Portugal as the United Kingdom of Portugal and the Algarves. During the early 300 years of Brazilian colonial history, the economic exploitation of the territory was based first on brazilwood extraction, which gave the territory its name. Slaves those brought from Africa, provided most of the work force of the Brazilian export economy after a brief period of Indian slavery to cut brazilwood. In contrast to the neighboring Spanish possessions, which had several viceroyalties with jurisdiction over New Spain and Peru, in the eighteenth century expanded to viceroyalties of Rio de la Plata and New Granada, the Portuguese colony of Brazil was settled in the coastal area by the Portuguese and a large black slave population working sugar plantations and mines; the boom and bust economic cycles were linked to export products. Brazil's sugar age, with the development of plantation slavery, merchants serving as middle men between production sites, Brazilian ports, Europe was undermined by the growth of the sugar industry in the Caribbean on islands that European powers seized from Spain.
Gold and diamonds were mined in southern Brazil through the end of the colonial era. Brazilian cities were port cities and the colonial administrative capital was moved several times in response to the rise and fall of export products' importance. Unlike Spanish America, which fragmented into many republics upon independence, Brazil remained a single administrative unit under a monarch, giving rise to the largest country in Latin America. Just as European Spanish and Roman Catholicism were a core source of cohesion among Spain's vast and multi-ethnic territories, Brazilian society was united by the Portuguese language and Roman Catholic faith; as the only Lusophone polity in the Western Hemisphere, the Portuguese language was important to Brazilian identity. Portugal and Spain pioneered the European charting of sea routes that were the first and only channels of interaction between all of the world's continents, thus beginning the process of globalization. In addition to the imperial and economic undertaking of discovery and colonization of lands distant from Europe, these years were filled with pronounced advancements in cartography and navigational instruments, of which the Portuguese and Spanish explorers took advantage.
In 1494, the two kingdoms of the Iberian Peninsula divided the New World between them, in 1500 navigator Pedro Álvares Cabral landed in what is now Brazil and laid claim to it in the name of King Manuel I of Portugal. The Portuguese identified brazilwood as a valuable red dye and an exploitable product, attempted to force indigenous groups in Brazil to cut the trees. Portuguese seafarers in the early fifteenth century began to expand from a small area of the Iberian Peninsula, to seizing the Muslim fortress of Ceuta in North Africa, its maritime exploration proceeded down the coast of West Africa and across the Indian Ocean to the south Asian subcontinent, as well as the Atlantic islands off the coast of Africa on the way. They sought sources of gold and African slaves, high value goods in the African trade; the Portuguese set up fortified trading "factories", whereby permanent small commercial settlements anchored trade in a region. The initial costs of setting up these commercial posts was borne by private investors, who in turn received hereditary titles and commercial advantages.
From the Portuguese Crown's point of view, its realm was expanded with little cost to itself. On the Atlantic islands of the Azores, Sāo Tomé, the Portuguese began plantation production of sugarcane using forced labor, a precedent for Brazil's sugar production in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries; the Portuguese "discovery" of Brazil was preceded by a series of treaties between the kings of Portugal and Castile, following Portuguese sailings down the coast of Africa to India and the voyages to the Caribbean of the Genoese mariner sailing for Castile, Christopher Columbus. The most decisive of these treaties was the Treaty of Tordesillas, signed in 1494, which created the Tordesillas Meridian, dividing the world between the two kingdoms. All land discovered or to be discovered east of that meridian was to be the property of Portugal, everything to the west of it went to Spain; the Tordesillas Meridian divided South America into two parts, leaving a large chunk of land to be exploited by the Spaniards.
The Treaty of Tordesillas was arguably the most decisive event in all Brazilian history, since it determined that part of South America would be settled by Portugal instead of Spain. The present extent of Brazil's coastline is exactly that defined by the Treaty of Madrid, approved in 1750. On April 22, 1500, during the reign of King Manuel I, a fleet led by navigator Pedro Álvares Cabral landed in Brazil and took possession of the land in the name of the king. Although it is debated whether previous Portuguese explorers had been in Brazil, this date is and politically accepted as the day of the discovery of Brazil by Europeans. Álvares Cabral was leading a large fleet of 13 ships and more than 1000 men following Vasco da Gama's way to India, around Africa. The place where Álvares Cabral arrived is now known in Northeastern Brazil. After the voyage of Álvares Cabral, the Portuguese concentrated their efforts on the lucrative possessions in Africa and India
First French Empire
The First French Empire the French Empire,Note 1 was the empire of Napoleon Bonaparte of France and the dominant power in much of continental Europe at the beginning of the 19th century. Although France had established an overseas colonial empire beginning in the 17th century, the French state had remained a kingdom under the Bourbons and a republic after the Revolution. Historians refer to Napoleon's regime as the First Empire to distinguish it from the restorationist Second Empire ruled by his nephew as Napoleon III. On 18 May 1804, Napoleon was granted the title Emperor of the French by the French Sénat and was crowned on 2 December 1804, signifying the end of the French Consulate and of the French First Republic; the French Empire achieved military supremacy in mainland Europe through notable victories in the War of the Third Coalition against Austria, Prussia and allied nations, notably at the Battle of Austerlitz in 1805. French dominance was reaffirmed during the War of the Fourth Coalition, at the Battle of Jena–Auerstedt in 1806 and the Battle of Friedland in 1807.
A series of wars, known collectively as the Napoleonic Wars, extended French influence to much of Western Europe and into Poland. At its height in 1812, the French Empire had 130 departments, ruled over 70 million subjects, maintained an extensive military presence in Germany, Italy and the Duchy of Warsaw, counted Prussia and Austria as nominal allies. Early French victories exported many ideological features of the French Revolution throughout Europe: the introduction of the Napoleonic Code throughout the continent increased legal equality, established jury systems and legalised divorce, seigneurial dues and seigneurial justice were abolished, as were aristocratic privileges in all places except Poland. France's defeat in 1814, marked the end of the Empire. In 1799, Napoleon Bonaparte was confronted by Emmanuel Joseph Sieyès—one of five Directors constituting the executive branch of the French government—who sought his support for a coup d'état to overthrow the Constitution of the Year III.
The plot included Bonaparte's brother Lucien serving as speaker of the Council of Five Hundred, Roger Ducos, another Director, Talleyrand. On 9 November 1799 and the following day, troops led by Bonaparte seized control, they dispersed the legislative councils, leaving a rump legislature to name Bonaparte, Sieyès and Ducos as provisional Consuls to administer the government. Although Sieyès expected to dominate the new regime, the Consulate, he was outmaneuvered by Bonaparte, who drafted the Constitution of the Year VIII and secured his own election as First Consul, he thus became the most powerful person in France, a power, increased by the Constitution of the Year X, which made him First Consul for life. The Battle of Marengo inaugurated the political idea, to continue its development until Napoleon's Moscow campaign. Napoleon planned only to keep the Duchy of Milan for France, setting aside Austria, was thought to prepare a new campaign in the East; the Peace of Amiens, which cost him control of Egypt, was a temporary truce.
He extended his authority in Italy by annexing the Piedmont and by acquiring Genoa, Parma and Naples, added this Italian territory to his Cisalpine Republic. He laid siege to the Roman state and initiated the Concordat of 1801 to control the material claims of the pope; when he recognised his error of raising the authority of the pope from that of a figurehead, Napoleon produced the Articles Organiques with the goal of becoming the legal protector of the papacy, like Charlemagne. To conceal his plans before their actual execution, he aroused French colonial aspirations against Britain and the memory of the 1763 Treaty of Paris, exacerbating British envy of France, whose borders now extended to the Rhine and beyond, to Hanover and Cuxhaven. Napoleon would have ruling elites from a fusion of the old aristocracy. On 12 May 1802, the French Tribunat voted unanimously, with the exception of Carnot, in favour of the Life Consulship for the leader of France; this action was confirmed by the Corps Législatif.
A general plebiscite followed thereafter resulting in 3,653,600 votes aye and 8,272 votes nay. On 2 August 1802, Napoleon Bonaparte was proclaimed Consul for life. Pro-revolutionary sentiment swept through Germany aided by the "Recess of 1803", which brought Bavaria, Württemberg and Baden to France's side. William Pitt the Younger, back in power over Britain, appealed once more for an Anglo-Austro-Russian coalition against Napoleon to stop the ideals of revolutionary France from spreading. On 18 May 1804, Napoleon was given the title of "Emperor of the French" by the Senate. Note 3In four campaigns, the Emperor transformed his "Carolingian" feudal republican and federal empire into one modelled on the Roman Empire; the memories of imperial Rome were for a third time, after Julius Caesar and Charlemagne, used to modify the historical evolution of France. Though the vague plan for an invasion of Great Britain was never executed, the Battle of Ulm and the Battle of Austerlitz overshadowed the defeat of Trafalgar, the camp at Boulogne put at Napoleon's disposal the best military resources he had commanded, in the form of La Grande Armée.
In the War of the Third Coalition, Napoleon swept away the remnants of the old Holy Roman Empire and created in southern Germany the vassal states of Bavaria