First, thanks! I had no idea Afonso de Albuquerque’s conquests had been so marvelous. I mean, yeah, Camões and Pessoa dedicated him some verses, but it’s not very informative.
Why didn’t it happen the other way around: some ambitious local ruler talks to the conquistadors, exploits their internal divisions, allies with some to defeat the others, and ends up on top
Actually, it happened sometimes—natives played Europeans against each other in Africa and Brazil, where the absence of centralized government (and bad terrain) made a quick takeover impossible.
First, thanks! I had no idea Afonso de Albuquerque’s conquests had been so marvelous
I would not call any conquest marvelous
When I read Ramiro’s comment, I assumed that they were referring to the other common definition of marvelous (“causing great wonder; extraordinary” rather than “extremely good or pleasing”). I don’t know whether English is their first language, but I’ve seen people for whom English isn’t a first language use “positive” English words (e.g. “incredible”) in ways that are technically correct, but not common in the U.S. (e.g. “this can’t possibly be true”).
To provide a sillier example, calling the Great Pyramids of Giza a “wonder of the world” doesn’t necessarily imply that you think a project created by slave labor was “wondrous” in the sense of being good—you could instead mean that the Pyramids are unusually large/interesting/well-constructed compared to other architecture of the ancient world, or something like that.
In any case, if you see a comment that makes you think someone is endorsing a very harmful/problematic view, it seems best to ask a clarifying question when the situation is ambiguous.
Thanks Aaron. I try not to assume anything, and usually ask for clarification. I should have done the same here.