Interesting facts about alvar nunez cabeza de vaca

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interesting facts about alvar nunez cabeza de vaca

The Shipwrecked Men by Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca

I have seen the author referenced in any number of early Caribbean and Gulf histories, never got around to reading the root text. Found this copy in the donate box at the Library and figured it was worth a read finally.

It was worth it, if only to dip into a memoir of what travel and exploration entailed in the 16th Century, in short, it was NO JOKE! The disparity in the simplest of transit woes between 21st century me an Cabesa de Vaca are so vast as to make any concern I have in the modern day seem a trifle; this book puts some real perspective on the most basic comforts I take for granted on a daily basis.

Also of note, the degree to which de Vaca had to effectively go native and cast off much of the hubris that led him on the expedition, to survive the ordeal and make it home. Starting with over six hundred men, his expedition returns single-digit humans home, he himself goes from conqueror, to slave to proto-deity and back a number of times. He basically walked across the entire southwestern U.S. and northern Mexico, with nothing, begging for everything and surviving almost entirely due to the giving nature of the indigenous groups he encounters.

Its easy to pick the low-hanging fruit and simply criticize colonial exploitation et al and dismiss the whole tale, but I think its worth really examining the more meaningful underlying personal journey of de Vaca as he has to manifest the principals of his faith and learn an unorthodox understanding of the giving humanity of those simply seen as heathens prior to his tribulations. The whole book shows the actions of every indigenous group encountered to be more in line with stated christian mores than the behavior/actions of every European Christian in country; de Vaca realizes this inconsistency of thought before he gets out of harms way, and speaks up (which changes nothing for the indigenous folks, no spolier there, you know how that story ends).

Very interesting and enlightening memoir.
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Cabeza de

Spanish journer in north america. Early Life. His parents died while he was young, so he moved in with an aunt and uncle, and he probably had a fairly comfortable early life.
Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca

Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca

By September all but his party of 60 had perished; it reached the shore near present-day Galveston, Texas. The survivors lived among the natives of the region for four years, and Cabeza de Vaca carved out roles as a trader and a healer in the community. In he and the other three surviving members of his original party set out for Mexico, where they hoped to connect with other representatives of the Spanish empire. They traveled through Texas, and possibly what are now New Mexico and Arizona, before arriving in northern Mexico in , where they met up with fellow Spaniards, who were in the region to capture slaves. After a brief term as governor of a province in Mexico, he became a judge in Seville, Spain, a position he occupied for the remainder of his life. We strive for accuracy and fairness.

Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca was born around in Andalusia [3], a region of the most important documents in early American history, for Cabeza de Vaca.
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Cabeza de Vaca Facts: Exploration and Disaster

By September all but his party of 60 had perished; it reached the shore near present-day Galveston , Texas. In the following years he and his companions spent much time among nomadic Indians, serving as slaves in order to be cared for by them. Though he found only the gravest hardship and poverty during his wanderings, he made his way back to Mexico in He recounted his adventures in Naufragios. His power was usurped by a rebel governor, Domingo Martinez de Irala , who imprisoned him and had him deported to Spain , where he was convicted of malfeasance in office and banished to service in Africa.

Cabeza de Vaca is remembered for his epic journey across the Americas. He was a survivor of the failed Narvaez expedition and would journey across the North American continent for eight years. He would pen books on his encounters with the natives that gave the perspective of who they were and how they conductive themselves. He would eventually return to Spain and would never return to the Americas. He was unlike the other Spanish Conquistadors in that he did not conquer with the sword because he did not have one, but he survived through intuition and tolerance.

Cabeza de Vaca left Spain for the Americas in June Others of the explorers landed, only to die of starvation or Indian attack. Cabeza de Vaca, however, and a few companions survived. From to , Cabeza de Vaca and these others lived a meagre life with the Karankawa Indians, in a state of semi-slavery and often separated from each other. During this time Cabeza de Vaca took advantage of his slight medical skills and remade himself as healer. He explored this small section of the East Texas coast in hopes of finding a way to Mexico and the Spanish colonies there. With the help of many native Americans along the way, they crossed the Pecos and Colorado rivers and made their way towards Spanish outposts by


  1. Declan S. says:

    Alvar Nunez Cabeza de Vaca (ca. ca. ) was a Spanish explorer. Marooned on the Texas coast, he wandered for 8 years in a land no European had.

  2. Mark H. says:

    Cabeza de vaca facts - Google

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