The Tapuia of Northeastern Brazil in Dutch Sources (1628–1648)


This book presents the transcriptions and annotated translations of fifteen key historical documents concerning the Tapuia indigenous people written just before and during the Dutch occupation of northeastern Brazil. The selected documents vary widely in type, including letters, descriptions, reports, first-person declarations, diaries, and transcripts of interrogations, thereby showcasing different perspectives and audiences. Some of the documents were authored by European writers, while others register indigenous voices somewhat more directly in the form of interviews or declarations.

These texts provide important first-hand information about the Tapuia and other indigenous peoples during the Dutch conquest, revealing their cultural practices and knowledge while also detailing their strategic engagements with each other and with different European colonizers.
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Martijn M. van den Bel, Ph.D. (2015), Leiden University, is an archaeologist and excavates in French Guiana and the French Lesser Antilles. He is interested in encounters between Amerindians and Europeans during the seventeenth century.

Mariana Françozo, Ph.D. (2009), Unicamp, is an anthropologist and a historian. She is associate professor at the Faculty of Archaeology, Leiden University. She is the editor of Toward an Intercultural Natural History of Brazil: The Historia Naturalis Brasiliae Reconsidered (Routledge, 2023).
Managing Editor
Corinne L. Hofman, Leiden University

Cristiana Barreto, Museu Paraense Emílio Goeldi
Nicholas Laluk, University of California, Berkeley
Genner Llanes-Ortiz, Bishop’s University / Université Bishop’s
Karoline Noack, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms Universität

Advisory Board
Benoit Bérard, Université des Antilles
Mariana De Campos Françozo, Leiden University
Alexander Geurds, Leiden University
Nikolai Grube, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms Universität
Maarten E. R. G. N. Jansen, Leiden University
Rosemary A. Joyce, University of California, Berkeley
Jason Laffoon, Leiden University
Leonardo López Luján, Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia, Mexico
Eduardo Neves, Universidade de São Paulo
Stephen Rostain, CNRS - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne
Angel Iván Rivera Guzmán, Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia, Mexico
Roberto Valcárcel Rojas, Instituto Tecnológico de Santo Domingo (INTEC) , Santo Domingo
List of Figures

 1 Before Meeting the Tapuia
 2 The Tapuia Deal
 3 Indirect Indigenous Rule and the Portuguese Revolt
 4 Tapuia Life

Note on the Translation

1 Declaration of Gaspar Paraupaba (1628)

2 Description of Pernambuco or Declaration of Gaspar Paraupaba (1637)

3 Interrogation of Andries Tacoe (1631)

4 Memoir of Marcilliean (C. 1631)

5 Letter of Pedro Potij (C. 1631)

6 First Journal of Joris Garstman (1634)

7 Second Journal of Joris Garstman (1634)

8 Description by Gerrit Hulck (1635)

9 Description by Elias Herckmans (1639)

10 Description by Zacharias Wagener (1641)

11 Description by Gerardus Vossius (1641)

12 Description by Johannes de Laet (1644)

13 Journal of Jacob Rabbi (1648)

14 Description by Caspar van Baerle (1647)

15 Journal of Roulox Baro (1651)


Students and researchers working on Atlantic history, Indigenous history, Dutch Brazil, and translation studies will find this book especially interesting.
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