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Henry the Navigator ( 1394 - 1460 ), the Infante Dom Henrique, is most famous for the voyages of discovery that he organised and financed, which eventually led to the rounding of Africa and the establishment of sea routes to the Indies.
He was the third son of King Joăo of Portugal. His mother, the Queen, was Philippa of Lancaster, the daughter of John of Gaunt.

In Sagres, in 1415, Prince Henry made his base for sea exploration, making it a centre for cartography, navigation and shipbuilding. The Catalan Jew from Majorca, Jehuda Cresques, son of the cartographer Abraham Cresques, was brought to Sagres to supervise the collation of geographic facts brought back by Henry's explorers, who were encouraged and later required to keep detailed logs of their travels.
In 1433, he asked Gil Eanes to sail beyond Cap Bojador, which was located 300 kilometers further than South Canaries Islands. At that time, this point was the limit of the known world towards Equator. That year, Gil Eanes failed but he succeeded in 1434, braving superstitious terrors inspired by this promontory.

Muslims and Arabs, Italians from Genova and Venezzia, Germans and Scandinavians came to Sagres. This community developed navigational instruments and such as the quadrant, and new mathematical tables ( abaques ) to help in determining latitude. The local harbour of Lagos saw the development of a new type of ship, the caravel.

But, here, the legend goes. However, these ideas are comparatively recent ones, and have no foundation in the historical records of the time.

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Additional Photos by Jean Renaud Leborgne (jrleborgne) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 155 W: 55 N: 82] (1554)
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