To The Ends of the Earth
Or at least that was what old Europe thought of the most Western point of Portugal in the 1400’s until they were enlightened. As I stood last month at Fortaleza de Sagres in Sagres, Portugal I couldn’t help but feel a since of connection between what it would have felt like to aboard a ship embarking for the Americas. What it would have felt like if I was a slave or a newly trained sailor tackling these treacherous seas.
In my contemplation, I stumbled upon a book named, Seeds of Change: Six Plants that Transformed Mankind written by Henry Hobhouse. The reading is quite intriguing and provides an interesting historical glimpse into the power behind trade culture. How New Worlds were found on the basis of their quest to satisfy the Royals’ sweet food cravings. (see: SUGAR) The clever development of the Triangular Trade and the adventures or legends that made history keep you glued to these pages as you go back in time.
Amazon.com briefly provides this following synopsis: “A personal and highly original take on the history of six commercial plants, Seeds of Change illuminates how sugar, tea, cotton, the potato, quinine, and the cocoa plant have shaped our past. In this fascinating account, the impassioned Henry Hobhouse explains the consequences of these plants with attention-grabbing historical moments. While most records of history focus on human influence, Hobhouse emphasizes how plants too are a central and influential factor in the historical process.”