Explorers and Adventure

Francisco de Almeida died

Happened: 1510-03-01

Description

Almeida sailed for Portugal in December 1509 and reached Table Bay near the Cape of Good Hope, where the Garcia, Belém and Santa Cruz dropped anchor late February 1510, to replenish water. There they encountered the local indigenous people, the Khoikhoi. After friendly trade with the Khoikhoi some of the crew visited their nearby village where they tried to steal some of the locals' cattle. Almeida allowed his captains Pedro and Jorge Barreto to return to the village on the morning of 1 March 1510. The village's cattle herd was raided with the loss of one man, while Almeida awaited his men some distance from the beach. As the flagship's master Diogo d'Unhos moved the landing boats to the watering point, the Portuguese were left without a retreat. The Khoikhoi sensed the opportunity for an attack, during which Almeida and 64 of his men perished, including 11 of his captains. Almeida's body was recovered the same afternoon and buried on the shore front of the current Cape Town.