Black Women of Brazil

The site dedicated to Brazilian women of African descent

25 curious facts about slavery in Brazil


transportedeescravos

Note from BW of Brazil: Whenever discussing the experiences of African descendants in the Americas, the topic will inevitably turn to the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade at some point in the discussion. This blog has touched on a few aspects about slavery in Brazil over the past few years, mostly dealing with the sheer numbers of Africans brought to Brazil and the vast racial inequalities that continue even 125 years after the abolition of this institution. Today, in a very intriguing post, we present a little more background about slavery from the Brazilian perspective and shed light on some interesting details. 

Main slave traffic routes between Africa and Brazil

Main slave traffic routes between Africa and Brazil

25 curiosities about slavery in Brazil

by Michel Goulart

The Golden Law signed by Princess Isabel on May 13, 1888, ended slavery in Brazil

The Golden Law signed by Princess Isabel on May 13, 1888, ended slavery in Brazil

On May 13th the abolition of slavery is commemorated in Brazil. The fact occurred in 1888, through the signing of the famous Lei Áurea (Golden Law), at the hands of Princess Isabel. Since then, this fact has created divisions among those celebrating the liberation of slaves and those who think the Lei Áurea did not include blacks in Brazilian society and maintained inequalities. On this issue, we will discuss in another post. In this post, we will point out 25 curiosities about slavery in Brazil.

13th of May, 1888: The Extinction of Slavery

13th of May, 1888: The Extinction of Slavery

Please note: we understand that the matter posted below is delicate and provokes different feelings in different segments of the Brazilian population. The goal is not to idealize the subject or make it a caricature, but just address the facts. We chose also to use the term negro (black), which is more utilized today rather than Afro-Brazilian.

This list was extracted and adapted from different sources such as Mania de História and Guia dos Curiosos.

Approximately 5.5 million slaves were brought to Brazil 4.8 million arrived alive Of the 700,000 that died, 660,000 died on the slave ships 38% of all Africans brought to the Americas during the slave trade went to Brazil

Approximately 5.5 million slaves were brought to Brazil
4.8 million arrived alive
Of the 700,000 that died, 660,000 died on the slave ships
38% of all Africans brought to the Americas during the slave trade went to Brazil

1. The first slave ships were brought by the Portuguese Martim Afonso de Sousa in 1532. The official account estimates that between that date and 1850, something like 5 million black slaves entered Brazil. However, some historians estimate that there could have been twice that number.

A tumbeiro

A tumbeiro

2. The slave ships that brought slaves from Africa to Brazil were called “tumbeiros” due to the death of thousands of Africans during the crossing. These deaths were due to abuse suffered by slaves, the poor hygienic conditions and diseases caused by lack of vitamins as in the case of scurvy.

Two women in photo taken in Recife, Pernambuco in 1869

Two women in photo taken in Recife, Pernambuco in 1869

3. It is possible to trace the origin of slaves into three groups: those from modern day Sudan in which the Yoruba, also called nagôs, dominate the region and those who came from the northern tribes of Nigeria, mostly Muslims, called malês or alufás , and the group of the Bantus, captured in the Portuguese colonies of Angola and Mozambique.

Leilão de escravos - Slave auction

Leilão de escravos – Slave auction

4. When arriving in Brazil, African was called the peça (piece) and sold at leilões públicos (public auctions) as a good commodity: they polished their teeth, shaved their hair, applied oils to hide the body diseases and make the skin shine as they were fattened to ensure a good price.

escravos

5. A slave was worth more when he was male and adult. A slave was considered an adult when he was between 12 and 30 years of age. They worked on average from 6am to 10pm, almost without rest, and aged very quickly. At 35, they already had white hair and toothless mouths.

The Brazilian national cuisine known as "feijoada" has origins in the slavery era

The Brazilian national cuisine known as “feijoada” has origins in the slavery era

6. The captives received, once a day, only a serving of bean broth. To enrich the mixture a bit, they made use of the parts of the pig that the lords despised: the tongue, tail, feet and ears. It was from this practice that came, according to tradition, the Brazilian dish known as feijoada (1).

Festa de Nossa Senhora do Rosário

Festa de Nossa Senhora do Rosário

7. The Festa de Nossa Senhora do Rosário (Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary), the patron saint of slaves in colonial Brazil, was first celebrated in Olinda, Pernambuco (northeastern Brazil) in the year 1645. The saint was already worshiped in Africa, and taken by the Portuguese as a way to Christianize blacks. They were baptized when they left Africa, or when they came to Brazil.

Photo of two women in Rio de Janeiro in 1870

Photo of two women in Rio de Janeiro in 1870

8. Most of all feasts in honor of the saint take place in the city of Serro, Minas Gerais (southeastern Brazil) in July since 1720. According to legend, one day Our Lady of the Rosary came out of the sea. Being called the Indians, they didn’t deal with it. The same happened with white sailors. The saint answered only to slaves, who loudly played their drums.

9. White and black children walked around naked and played until 5 or 6 years of age. They had the same games, based on fantasy characters of African folklore. But at age 7, the black child was faced his/her condition and needed to start working.

A law stipulated that 50 was the maximum amount of whip lashes a slave could receive

A law stipulated that 50 was the maximum amount of whip lashes a slave could receive

10. Each planter was allowed to import 120 slaves per year from Africa. And there was a law that stipulated 50 as the maximum number of lashes that a slave could take a day.

Vatapá and Caruru

Vatapá and Caruru

11. The kitchen was very appreciated in the casa grande (big house). Dishes of African origin such as vatapá and caruru, common on the patriarchal table in the northeast, captured European and Brazilian tastes. The kitchen was in an annex of the house, separated from the main rooms by storage or internal rooms.

12. Normally, internal divisions of the slave quarters separated men and women. But, sometimes, some accepted couples were permitted by the master to live in separate shacks, huts covered with banana leaves.

Photo of two women in Salvador, Bahia, in 1869 (left) and 1880

Photo of two women in Salvador, Bahia, in 1869 (left) and 1880

13. On Sundays, the slaves were entitled to cultivate cassava and vegetables for their own consumption. They could even sell the surplus in the city. The measure combated hunger in the field because the monoculture of exportation made no room for subsistence products.

14. When night fell, the sound of drumming and dance moves dominated the slave quarters. Festivals and other cultural events were admitted because most of the masters believed it diminished the chances of revolt.

15. With the expansion of cities, urban slaves multiplied in skilled trades such as bricklayers, chicken vendors, barbers and lace makers. Porters wandered from one side to another, carrying chests, barrels, furniture and, of course, white people.

Vendor, Rio de Janeiro, 1875

Vendor, Rio de Janeiro, 1875

16. Escravos de ganho (vendor slaves) were slaves who had permission to sell or provide services on the street. In exchange, the slave had to give a percentage of profits to his/her owner.

17. In some regions, African slaves were divided into three categories: the “boçal” , who refused to speak Portuguese, resisting European culture, the “ladino”, who spoke Portuguese, and the “crioulo”, the slave who was born in Brazil. Generally, ladinos and crioulos received better treatment, milder work and prospect of social mobility.

Senzala or slave quarters

Senzala or slave quarters

18. Negros never had a passive attitude toward slavery. Many broke working tools and set senzalas (slave quarters) on fire. Others committed suicide, often eating dirt. Still others succumbed to feelings of banzo, great sadness that could lead to death by starvation. A common form of rebellion, however, was escape.

Slave resistence

Slave resistence

19. According to some historians, capoeira was born of an Angolan ritual called n’golo (zebra dance), a competition that the boys from villages would do to see who would get the girl who reached the age for marriage. Over time, the practice transformed itself into a display of skill and dexterity.

Capoeira

Capoeira

20. The word capoeira (2) is not of African origin. It comes from the Tupi Indian (kapu’era). Brought to Brazil via the slave ships, capoeira was developed in quilombos (3) (maroon societies) of Pernambuco in the sixteenth century. The characteristics of fight and dance acquired in the country can classify it as a genuinely Brazilian cultural manifestation.

Capoeiristas playing berimbaus

Capoeiristas playing berimbaus

21. The berimbau is a percussion instrument brought from Africa (mbirimbau). It only entered into the history of capoeira in the twentieth century. Before, the instrument was used by street vendors to attract customers. The bow comes from the stem of a shrub called biriba, common in the Northeast, which is easy to wear.

22. Until the abolition of slavery, the law punished practitioners of capoeira punishable by up to 300 lashes and the dungeon. From 1889 to 1937, capoeira was a crime under the Penal Code. A simple demonstration resulted in six months in jail. In 1937, President Getúlio Vargas went to see a show, liked it and ended the ban.

23. After independence from Portugal in 1822, one of the first measures of the government was to prohibit black students from attending the same schools as whites. One of these reasons was that they feared they could transmit diseases.

24. The abolitionist movement had existed for more than 60 years when the Lei Áurea was signed in 1888. It mobilized many intellectuals of the time, such as writers, politicians, lawyers, and also the population in general.

25. In 1823, Dom Pedro I drew up a paper advocating the end of slavery in Brazil, but liberation would only occur 65 years later.

Source: História Digital

Notes

1. Feijoada is a stew of beans with beef and pork, which is a typical dish in Portugal and former Portuguese colonies, such as Brazil, Macau, Angola, Mozambique and Goa. Modern variants of the dish are based on ancient Feijoada recipes from the Portuguese regions of Beira, Estremadura, and Trás-os-Montes. In Brazil, feijoada (feijoada brasileira) is often considered the national dish. The name comes from feijão, Portuguese for “beans.” The basic ingredients of feijoada are beans with fresh pork or beef. In northwest Portugal (chiefly Minho and Douro Litoral), it is usually made with white beans; in the northeast (Trás-os-Montes), it is generally prepared with kidney beans, and includes other vegetables such as tomatoes, carrots, and cabbage. The stew is best prepared over low heat in a thick clay pot. It is usually served with rice and assorted sausages, such as chouriço, morcela (blood sausage), farinheira, and others, which may or may not be cooked in the stew. Source

2. Capoeira is a Brazilian martial art that combines elements of dance, acrobatics and music, and is sometimes referred to as a game. It was developed in Brazil mainly by African descendants with native Brazilian influences, probably beginning in the 16th century. It is known by quick and complex moves, using mainly power, speed, and leverage for a wide variety of kicks, spins, and highly mobile techniques; at heart is the ginga, the back-and-forth, foot-to-foot movement that serves as the starting point for such leverage. Capoeira used in genuine self-defense situations incorporates many sweeps and low moves, whereas when played as a game there is more emphasis on high moves, demonstrations of acrobatics, full cartwheels (called au) for evasion, and flips or other exotic techniques by mestres (masters), and performing an entertaining match for the audience. Source

3. A quilombo is a Brazilian hinterland settlement founded by people of African origin including the Quilombolas, or Maroons. Most of the inhabitants of quilombos (called quilombolas) were escaped slaves and, in some cases, later these escaped African slaves would help provide shelter and homes to other minorities of marginalised Portuguese, Brazilian aboriginals, Jews and Arabs, and/or other non-black, non-slave Brazilians who experienced oppression during colonization. However, the documentation on runaway slave communities typically uses the term mocambo to describe the settlements. “Mocambo” is an Ambundu word that means “hideout”, and is typically much smaller than a quilombo. Quilombo was not used until the 1670s and then primarily in more southerly parts of Brazil. A similar settlement exists in other Spanish-speaking countries of Latin America, and is called a palenque. Its inhabitants are palenqueros who speak various Spanish-African-based creole languages. Quilombos are identified as one of three basic forms of active resistance by slaves. The other two are attempts to seize power and armed insurrections for amelioration. Typically, quilombos are a “pre-19th century phenomenon”. The prevalence of the last two increased in the first half of 19th-century Brazil, which was undergoing both political transition and increased slave trade at the time. Source

48 comments on “25 curious facts about slavery in Brazil

  1. With all due thought, and in knowledge of the Black history of Brasil — I remind you, in respect — that many so-called ‘Black Women of Brasil ‘– are the most lovely of God’s creations in the world!

  2. Sybylla
    December 31, 2013

    Great post. Thank you very much. 🙂

  3. Francesca
    January 1, 2014

    Thank you for this post, I learnt so much. I really did not know capoeira was illegal. Although us people of African descent have been to hell & back, we still stand strong. With all we have gone through, you would think we wouldn’t exist by now, but our numbers keep growing whether it’s in Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe etc. And I hope peoples of African descent pass on out history to their children so they keep the spirits of our ancestors alive.

  4. ngubeni ka nkophe
    January 7, 2014

    Black history in Brazil, as Black everywhere, hurts as it scrapes off the scales of ignorance, and this history heals as it keeps our pain conscious pain, pain that is intellectual, emotional and moral. Thank you for waking us up and keeping us awake.

  5. Maya Ogundipe
    January 18, 2014

    I think there is an error here as yoruba are not found in sudan, but on the other side of africa.yoruba people are found predominantly in modern southern nigeria and also benin, the ivory coast.

    • Silvia Mangue
      November 23, 2015

      You are right about that. Yoruba people don’t come from the Sudan. The author made a mistake there.

      • Dr. Y.
        March 11, 2016

        Yes… the author made a mistake: there were no Yoruba in Sudan… however, there was a French Sudan which was part of West Africa and is today the country of Mali. And there was the Anglo-Sudan, which is what people know today as Sudan (North and South).

  6. gatasnegrasbrasileiras
    January 23, 2014

    @Maya Ogundipe: But what are the origins? Where did they come from? Here I cite from ModernGhana.com: “The slow and massive migration of our forefathers from the Middle East, north Africa and north-eastern Nigeria to our own homelands in the south-west are why the Yoruba, together with the northerners of what is presently known as northern Nigeria are generally known as the ”Sudanese Nigerians” whilst the Nigerians from the rest of southern Nigeria, which comprise of the Igbo race and the people of the south-south are generally known as the ”Bantu Nigerians”.” http://www.modernghana.com/news2/321997/1/who-are-the-yorubas-where-did-they-come-from-and-w.html

    • Rick-A-Licious (@RickyboyH)
      January 28, 2014

      Bantu is a language group, not a group of people.
      Secondly, these “Bantu” peoples are not native to Africa either, they are in fact the descendants of the Israelites (Yes, they were and still are black people) I know the Fulani people are “Nilotic” (i.e coming from Ham/Khawm) but most of the peoples who were captured and enslaved (and colonized) are of the “Negro” type (some call them bantu, it’s just a divide & conquer strategy to keep us from knowing our REAL heritage) who aren’t native to Africa, nor are they descendants of Ham/Khawm. We are the descendants of Shem – Aprhaxad – Tera – Abraham – Isaac – Jacob and the 12 tribes of Israel, in fact, most of the black people who were sent into slavery from Africa are descendants of the tribe of Judah (if you read the bible, you’ll see that Judah was the tribe which was sent into captivity to other nations) Some might have converted to Islam during the course of time (before they were captured) and some might not be Israelites at all (Moors were also enslaved) (The true Arabs were/are black people) .

      The traditions of giving offerings to god(s) is just an ancient israelite custom that they took with them from the holy land. The difference was/is that we/they prayed to idols, instead of the most high (hence why we were sent in exile)


      Israelites going into Assyrian captivity


      Closeup of the picture above


      Israelites in Babylonian captivity (This is taken from a city called Niniveh, it’s in present day Iraq)


      Closeup

      Look at their loc’ed hair and facial features!


      Israelites in Assyrian Captivity (read 2nd Kings 18:13-14)

      Black Brazilians (and descendants of slaves in the Americas in general + those who were left in Africa and subsequently colonized) is a fulfillment of the prophecies foretold in the book of Deuteronomy in the Tanakh (the New Testament & Jesus was a lie to make us docile, with all this “love your enemy/turn your other cheek” bullshit) . You who were brought into slavery in the Americas, Turkey, Iraq, Iran, India (Siddi people) and other places in Arabia are the TRUE descendants of Judah (i.e you are the ACTUAL Jews!)

      It is imperative that you know your true history, which is that of the chosen people of the most high!

      • Al D
        August 26, 2015

        It just goes to see how much disinformation is out there..this is for the one who made the comment about the tribe of Judah…you need to do some more history real history..

        Things are not as they appear… The bible and other modern religious documents have been
        fitted to suit and continue the slavemasters propaganda..black people, need to wake up
        Our people have suffered and are still suffering on all levels…let us not forget what our ancestors suffered. We are here because
        We have a purpose.. Wake up and ask the creator what’s your purpose.

      • Silvia Mangue
        November 23, 2015

        Oh come on it is not about who are the chosen ones, and who choses them any way another high power?
        I am Bantu and Bantu and we speak several languages, my language for example is called FANG and it is spoken in souther Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea and Gabon. And we are Bantu people.

      • Realist
        August 28, 2016

        A load of crap.

      • Judge Andre Harris III
        July 13, 2017

        Yes, Judah was brought as slaves to Brasil from Africa, but Satan also brought in his spies-agents mixed in amongst Judah, to confuse Judah and the whole world in the future=End Time=Today!
        Not all blacks are Israelites in Brasil-USA, etc. Not all Israelites are Israel-only a spiritual remnant will be Saved (only those chosen by YAH written in Book of Life since Adam-Noah)
        Egypt=Bondage, captivity,slavery, affliction; when future Israel left Egypt, they left a ‘mixed’ multitude of peoples.
        As in Brasil, USA, etc., Judah is mixed in with MOORS, ARABS (Ham-Ishmaelites-Edomites who look black like Judah)
        Moors ruled America when Judah was brought there, an ally of the white gentile heathens who enslaved Judah, after the Arabs (who were black then)!

      • Chidi Chidi-Umeh
        August 11, 2017

        Thank you for your input but I do not buy your Israel Bible story as authentic because you can’t prove non of that. Before Abraham who is the father of both Judaism, Christianity n Islam came from the land of Ur in Mesopotamia or whatever, our Ancestors in Kemet were already in their 13th Dynasty and have built all the pyramids. So we were existing before your bible story and your religion. Don’t try to confuse our people with your Abrahamic ways and calling our spiritual ways pagan or idol worshiping. I am African and if you jews want to copy us, its okay but don’t try to turn the table around cos it won’t work. Long time we have been lied to and deceived by all these religious tricks. Chidi.

    • Dr. Y.
      March 11, 2016

      Yes… again the Sudanese Nigerians are usually the ones from the northern part of the country: Haussa, Fulbe, Peulh (Pula), etc. The term ‘Sudanese’ stems again, from the ‘French Sudan’ colonial era which included Mali, and many countries in French West Africa. The ‘Bantu’ Nigerians are called as such because they probably came from migrations of the Bantu from Central/Southern Africa upward, and have languages with Bantu origins.

      • Louis Taderera
        August 19, 2016

        People People People: Bantu is a common word whose root is Ntu which means person or people. I find it most ridiculous that the word bantu is used as a label. Whenever you read it in a sentence just replace the term with people and you will realize how stupid it sounds. Yes it has a very deep meaning and when one says you are not a person they really mean that one’s behavior lacks humane traits. Its common in Southern African languages “where “Ntu” is the root of most words used for people. Its very common to say or refer to someone as “not being a person” when that individual has no empathy or does not recognize anybody else but themselves. So one would say “there is no person in him or her”.

        But again it could be argued that this is also an example of persons not knowing the origin of some words whose meaning has been changed completely.
        Its like the use of the term Tribe; I do not believe there is a single African language that has an equivalent of that word. In most African languages we describe or label people by where they come from or the language they speak. There is no concept of race among the population. It would appear that the concept came with the European anthropologists. Some say that those from Europe, when studying Africa, its people and languages they found that the sound Ntu was commonly used in most regions to refer to persons so it became quite easy and logical to label/refer to people as Bantus.
        As another example and I stand to be corrected but take the proper English meaning of the word “tribe” and find me its equivalent or nearest in meaning in any of the African language. I would love to be corrected on this one.

    • Mak
      October 7, 2017

      the Niger – Congo population (Bantu) are descendant of Israel . 2 massive group from Israel went through Egypt then split . one went west towards Ghana , Nigeria,Cameroon and the other went South towards Sudan went to Central Africa (Congo,Angola, Gabon ..etc) and the 3rd group went through Saudi Arabia towards East Africa down to South Africa.
      Senegal and Mali population are The living Descendants of the Ancient Egyptians .
      the highest number of slaves that came from the african continent to Brazil were from the Kingdom of Kongo (Congo Kinshasa, Congo Brazzaville and Angola)

  7. gatasnegrasbrasileiras
    January 23, 2014

    The origins of Yoruba culture can be traced back to east Africa including Egypt. I don’t have the book in front of me, but there is a study that proved the east African origins of the Yoruba.

    • KB
      October 20, 2017

      Who wrote that book? I can’t understand why we Africans argue about all this when we all know that all these were written by the slave master to suite their own parochial purpose

  8. Jeffrey Sanders
    April 3, 2014

    I’ve watched the ‘Black In Latin America Series: Brazil”, and it mentioned that slaves were treated worse than in the United States. I also heard (from a questionable source) that slavery was “milder” in Brazil. I would like to know how so and where could I find information about how slaves were treated.

  9. Pingback: Neymar and Dani Alves: Brazil’s “blond Bombers” and the Ongoing Whitening of Blackness in Brazil : EXPOSING BLACK TRUTH

  10. Fleurdunil
    October 21, 2014

    I’m going to agree with other commenters here, Yoruba are from West Africa. Also there were most likely no slaves from Sudan in Brazil. West Sudan had some slaves who were taken to the Middle East. What is now South Sudan never had interaction in the trans-atlantic slave trade but in the Middle Eastern slave trade.

    • Mak
      October 7, 2017

      Sudan was the ancient name given to Africa .

      The country’s place name Sudan is a name given to a geographical region to the south of the Sahara, stretching from Western Africa to eastern Central Africa. The name derives from the Arabic bilād as-sūdān (بلاد السودان), or “the lands of the Blacks”.

  11. Fleurdunil
    October 21, 2014

    Yoruba do not have the DNA to trace back to East Africa. Look there’s nothing wrong with West Africa but as an East African, from Sudan, I find it difficult when people keep trying to claim our heritage (Kingdom of Cush). Yoruba origins go to Central Africa (Cameroon) as do many Africans in that region, there is some Northern African/Berber admixture usually as well.

    • Mak
      October 7, 2017

      just like the Egyptians today that don’t want to admit that Egypt used to be a Black county . The vast majority of West , Central and South African migrated from The North East of Africa . they were running away from slavery and war . then found their new home deep inside Africa . Til today the Bantu Sudanese are being persecuted Killed and don’t have the same right as other Sudanese.

  12. AfroTapp@gmail.com
    December 1, 2014

    Very interesting that the finance books regarding anything to do with slavery in Brazil was burned. I guess it hides some of the families and corporations. https://aha.confex.com/aha/2012/webprogram/Paper8227.html

  13. Pingback: Slavery in Brazil | Exploring War

  14. Pingback: Fabiana Claudino, captain of Brazil’s gold medal women’s volleyball team, the victim of racist heckling in recent match | Black Women of Brazil

  15. joneldeprince
    March 24, 2015

    I agree that Yoruba’s were traded in Slavery in many parts of the world,and I do believe too they are part of the Cush, descendants,most or many black Africans are descendants of Cush,so I don’t know why only East Africans are claiming to be the only decendants

  16. The Historian
    June 11, 2015

    I think the editor and most posters here do not understand the meaning of the term “Sudan”. It could mean the two modern nation states today, but when encountered in historical texts/research means the whole region to the immediate south of the Sahara.It comes from the arabic “Bilad as Sudan” i.e “land of the blacks”,as was the description of black africa as it appeared to medieval arabs. In this “Bilad as Sudan” were many nations. So take note. Thanks,your African friend.

    • Realist
      August 23, 2016

      I was going to say the same thing with regard to the word “Sudan”.

  17. Stan
    August 4, 2015

    The Sudan at one time referred to the region immediately south of the sahara but north of the tropical forest, sometimes referred as the “Sahel” if Im not mistaken.It spans from West Africa all the way to the Indian Ocean. Its the land of cattle herders.

    • Silvia Mangue
      November 23, 2015

      You don’t need to guess, please, just look at the map. Sudan is immediately below Egypt it has been divided into two North and South Sudan. The north is Muslim and the south is Christian. The country share borders with Egypt, Chad, R.A.C., Uganda, Ethiopia and Eritrea.

      • E.Free
        December 12, 2015

        Why would we look at a modern map with boundaries created by outside men with an inside agenda? This is not no rather never a way of researching factual ancient information. Who gave Africa all of her country names? Was she not a massive fertile land with Kingdoms and their people? These man made boundaries have perverted our minds like man made skin-color stereotypes. This was done by people for greed i.e. The Scramble for Africa (although this was not the first time nor the first outside people). This dis-union is captured biblically, in ancient text, & orally via our community elders.

        Maybe we should call people by their tribes again and not colonized names. Those of our ancestors who were part of the Trans Atlantic War (in trade both parties gain equally) tried to preserve this by denying and sometimes dying to keep their identity. They knew no on would tell their story right because chattel slavery & colonialism is rooted in absolute annihilation through warfare assimilation.

        Thanks for letting me dialogue with you.

        I appreciated this article.

  18. David Anthony
    August 16, 2015

    brazil has lots of people of African ancestry…..LOTS…

    • Louis
      November 29, 2015

      Yes, Brazil does have lots of African ancestry. However Brazilians are people from all corners of Planet earth, Without this blend of people Brazil would not be Brazil. For instance salvador da Bahia is the blackest city outside Africa. and Blumenau is the most germanic in the Americas… You see, we are Africans, and we are proud of it, and we are Germans and proud of it as well. This is Brazil , Learn how to love your fellow human being. Racism should be be punished with death!

  19. Shipinen Anom
    November 22, 2015

    Thanks for your informative post, I learnt alot. There appears to be a factual inaccuracy as Yoruba’s can be found not from Sudan but West Africa. Predominantly South Western Nigeria, Benin, Togo and Ghana.

  20. Afiya
    December 22, 2015

    I am enjoying this website to learn about the Afro-Brazilian culture. I will be in Bahia and Sao Paulo in January 2016. I would love to connect with someone to get a better understanding of the culture instead of see the tourist attractions. I would also like to go to a skin care spa when in Bahia.

  21. Courage2Believe
    February 18, 2016

    I love this article. It taught me a great deal about Brazil’s connection with Africa, which is an overwhelmingly hard to ignore. I wrote a blog entitled, “Brazil’s Black History – Slave Trade’s Black Brazilians – http://www.kevindorival.com/brazils-black-history-slave-trades-black-brazilians/” and I hope that your readers like it. Who ever wrote this blog is brilliant. There is so much rich history about Brazil’s beautiful people. I hope that there is a way that we can inspire and encourage each other because the plight of black people is worldwide. To all my Brazilian brothers and sister – I got love for all of you. Please reach back out to me. I am also the author of the new nonfiction book, “7 Types of Queens, Kings Desire.”

  22. Whit Palmer
    February 21, 2016

    The Yoruba were not from Sudan!!!

  23. Dr. Y.
    March 11, 2016

    Thank you for this very good article on 25 facts about slavery in Brazil. One question: are there novels translated in English which talk about slavery in Brazil, similar to ‘Uncle Tom’s Cabin’ in the US? or novels by Afro-Brazilians about their conditions? Could you please send me a list?

  24. Pingback: Discover Salvador in 2016: Visit Beautiful Bahia This Summer - Don't Stop Living

  25. Jovision
    May 29, 2016

    SLAVES – WORLD HISTORY-

    -Slavery exists since the beginning of the human species, all people in the world are part of this institution, in both sides, as slaves when they lost and as enslavers when they win, but we have records at least since the XVIII Century BC. Nowadays slavery is still very alive in Africa!

    – 1800 – 1400 Century BC

    JEWS enslaved by EGYPTIANS
    2.5 – 3.5 Million

    Bible – Old Testament

    – Slaves in Babylon: 18th century BC
    Information about slaves in early societies relates mainly to their legal status, which is essentially that of an object – part of the owner’s valuable property. The Code of Hammurabi, from Babylon in the 18th century BC, gives chilling details of the different Rewards and penalties for surgeons operating on free men or slaves. But it also reveals that the system is not one of unmitigated brutality. Surprisingly, Babylonian slaves are themselves allowed to own property.

    But the first civilization in which we know a great deal about the role of slaves is that of ancient Greece.

    -Slaves in Greece: from the 7th century BC

    Both the leading states of Greece – Sparta and Athens – depend entirely upon forced labour, though the system in Sparta is more properly described as serfdom rather than slavery. The distinction is that the helots of Sparta are a conquered people, living on their own hereditary land but forced to work it for their Spartan masters. Their existence is a traditional rural one to which certain rights remain attached.

    The slaves of Athens, by contrast, have no conventional rights. But their condition varies greatly according to the work they do.

    -Slaves in Rome: from the second century BC
    The same loophole, offered by the self-esteem of free citizens, provides even greater opportunities to slaves in imperial Rome. The most privileged slaves are the secretarial staff of the emperor.

    But these are the exception. In the two centuries before the beginning of the empire (the last two centuries BC) slaves are employed by Romans more widely than ever before and probably with greater brutality. In the mines they are whipped into continuing effort by overseers; in the fields they work in chain gangs; in the public arenas they are forced to engage in terrifying combat as gladiators. There are several slave uprisings in these two centuries, the most famous of them led by Spartacus.

    – 977 AD
    Vikings Sacrifice of Slaves.
    Human Sacrifices
    Viking slaves were sacrificed when their masters died, and they ate more poorly during their lives.
    At the Viking Museum in Roskilde! They had a pretty brutal description of sacrificing a slave girl after her master died. She was first taken into a hut and gang-raped by a group of men whilst an old wise woman held her down, with drummers outside to muffle her screams. Then the men strangled her while the woman stabbed her in the stomach with a dagger.

    Ibn Hawqal, an Arab geographer, described a Viking slave trade in 977 A.D. that extended across the Mediterranean from Spain to Egypt. Others recorded that slaves from northern Europe were funneled from Scandinavia through Russia to Byzantium and Baghdad.

    – Slavery is also in Balts, Slavs, and Celts.

    -Slaves in the Middle Ages: 6th – 15th century
    In the period after the collapse of the Roman empire in the west, slavery continues in the countries around the Mediterranean.).
    Nevertheless the slave trade thrives, and the Mediterranean is a natural focal point.
    -South of the Mediterranean, the dynasties of Arabs along the coast stimulate an African slave trade. The town of Zawila develops in the Sahara in about700 specifically as a trading station for slaves. Captured in the region around Lake Chad, they are sold to Arab households in a Muslim world which by the 8th century stretches from Spain to Persia.

    -Slavery is an accepted part of life in Arabia during the time of Muhammad, in the 7th century, and the Qur’an offers no arguments against the practice. It merely states, particularly in relation to female slaves, that they must be well treated. In general that has been the case, compared with the barbaric treatment of slaves in some Christian communities.

    -1368-1644 AD
    CHINA
    Just in the China Wall between 2 to 3 Million Slaves died.

    – 15th – 17th century
    Portugal – 4.500 Million Slaves to Brasil
    Before the Portuguese the Amazonia tribes that didnt kill the enemies also had slaves.
    The Portuguese expeditions of the 15th century bring European ships for the first time into regular contact with sub-Saharan Africa. This region has long been the source of slaves for the route through the Sahara to the Mediterranean. The arrival of the Portuguese opens up another channel. Arabes sold slaves captured by other African tribes.
    This African trade, together with the prosperity of the Cape Verde Islands, expands greatly with the development of labour-intensive plantations growing sugar, cotton and tobacco in the Caribbean and America. The Portuguese enforce a monopoly of the transport of African slaves to their own colony of Brazil. But other nations with transatlantic interests soon become the main visitors to the Slave Coast.

    By the 18th century the majority of the ships carrying out this appalling commerce are British. They waste no part of their journey, having evolved the procedure known as the triangular trade.

    – England
    6.500 Million Slaves to Americas
    4.500 Million to North America (18th . 19th), including a great percentadge of slaves obtained in attacks to Iberian ships, sold to USA by contraband.
    2 Million Slaves to Carabean and British America
    British Slavery in India? In South Africa? Australias?
    Triangular trade: 18th century
    The triangular trade has an economic elegance most attractive to the owners of the slave ships. Each of the three separate journeys making up an expedition is profitable in its own right, with only the ‘middle voyage’ across the Atlantic involving slaves as cargo.

    Ships depart from Liverpool or Bristol with items in demand in west Africa – these include firearms, alcohol (particularly rum), cotton goods, metal trinkets and beads. The goods are eagerly awaited by traders in ports around the Gulf of Guinea. These traders have slaves on offer, captured in the African interior and now awaiting transport to America.

    – 1602 – 1910
    Nederlands
    2 to 4 Millions (still hidden by the Monarchies)
    Just 550.000 by oficial NL authorities.

    – Belgium – 1908 BC
    10 Millions African slaves dead, butcher and tortured by Belgium in Congo.
    The most important studies suggest that just about 1 century ago, the Belgian cut the arms to 1 Million Congolese and worst that about 30 Million Congolese died in consequence of The Belgian King Leopold II Africa Butcher Policy.

    – 1939 – 1945 XX Century BC
    GERMANY – 15 Millions Slaves in World War II
    German work force. Counting deaths and turnover, about 15 million men and women were forced labourers at one point or another during the war.[4]
    The liberation of Germany in 1945 freed 11 million foreigners, called “displaced persons” – chiefly forced labourers and POWs. In addition to POWs, the Germans had seized 2.8 million Soviet workers to labour in factories in Germany. Returning them home was a high priority for the Allies. However, in the case of Russians and Ukrainians, returning often meant suspicion, prison, or death. The United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA), Red Cross, and military operations provided food, clothing, shelter, and assistance in returning home. In all, 5.2 million foreign workers and POWs were repatriated to the Soviet Union, 1.6 million to Poland, 1.5 million to France, and 900,000 to Italy, along with 300,000 to 400,000 each to Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia, the Netherlands, Hungary, and Belgium.[5]

    -RUSSIA-
    Many Millions. Slavery. Slave Workers in Dagestan, Siberia, Feudal Workers

    -USA- In 1850 several sources suggest that after the civil war, 4.500 Million African Slaves were free, but in the XX Century the KU KLUX KLAN,the assassination of Martin Luther King, today`s African American daily assassination, including by police and the 1 Million African Americans in jail definitely proof for the eternal true history, that USA has still an huge Slave Mentality, wich doesn`t happens in Brasil!

    -AFRICA
    Notable Islamic slave society was that of the Sokoto caliphate formed by Hausas in sub-Saharan Africa (northern Nigeria and Cameroon) in the 19th century. At least half the population was enslaved. That was only the most notable of the Fulani jihad states of the western and central Sudan, where between 1750 and 1900 from one- to two-thirds of the entire population consisted of slaves. In Islamic Ghana, between 1076 and 1600, about a third of the population were slaves

    -AFRICA TODAY`S SLAVERY-

    Several Millions:
    Sex Trade
    Forced Labour
    Child Slave Trade
    Ritual Slavery
    Further information: Human trafficking in Nigeria, Human trafficking in Benin and Human trafficking in Togo
    The trading of children has been reported in modern Nigeria and Benin.[14] ….-he remainder have not been released. Instead Shekau, who has a reward of $7 million offered by the United States Department of State since June 2013 for information leading to his capture, announced his intention of selling them into slavery.
    Ritual slavery
    Ritual servitude (Trokosi)
    Jovision

  26. Valerie Benn
    August 10, 2016

    Great article learned quite a bit especially since I’m sitting here watching the Olympics. My beautiful BLACK USA sisters WHEREVER we come from are kicking butt in gymnastics. The comments here are also so interesting I can’t get enough. Thank you all

  27. Realist
    August 25, 2016

    A detailed comment I made was not published. Trying a shorter version. Biblical history has NOTHING to do with African history. NADA, RIEN, ZILCH. The movement of peoples was OUT OF AFRICA. The Afro-Asiatic family of languages spreads from Nigeria to Iraq: Chadic (Hausa, etc.) Berber, Ancient Egyptian, Cushitic (Somali, etc), Semitic (Arabic, Hebrew, etc.), Omotic. Tha fact that only one group is spoken outside Africa (Semitic) means that the proto-language saw the light of day ON THE AFRICAN CONTINENT. Genesis is not history, black people.Check out Niger-Kordofanian languages as opposed to Bantu languages. Hope I don’t have to write this all over again.

    Arabs have been enslaving Blacks for 1,400 years. Females were treated more gently than in the Atlantic Slave Trade???? Nonsense!!! Males were castrated all over the Muslim world in order to guard harems. Yet some of you guys give your children Arab names!!! What a sad mess!

  28. Tunda Turo
    September 23, 2016

    There is much error in this:

    “3. It is possible to trace the origin of slaves into three groups: those from modern day Sudan in which the Yoruba, also called nagôs, dominate the region and those who came from the northern tribes of Nigeria, mostly Muslims, called malês or alufás , and the group of the Bantus, captured in the Portuguese colonies of Angola and Mozambique.”

    Yoruba people are not from the Sudan region and they have no present there. Additionally, one cannot specially point to the Yoruba without pointing to their parent tribe the Igbo, Iwaw, etc. From here the Bantu ethnics are introduced.
    Second, the people here that are listed as northern Nigerians are actually Sudanese because the region was called central Sudan and Bilal al-Sudan in Arabic.

    Back in 2003 I believe, National Geographics had conducted an indigenous DNA test on people from central Sudan and was comparing our results with those of Brazil. They were interested in one group only, which is found in present-day Chad known as Gorane/Toubou. We know we have people in Brazil and in north America via oral tradition, but at the time the Brazilians refused to submit to the DNA test. Maybe they truly do believe being whiter is better. What they do not know is that many Black African ethnics are actually white and identify as white or mixed. Long story.

  29. Delia
    October 4, 2016

    This was a really article. I dont know enough to make a judgment but I had no idea capoeira was illegal when my parents were born! And it was really interesting to know where the word ‘boçal’ came from. We still use it today, and as you know, it means you are obnoxious.

  30. Odell drummer
    June 23, 2017

    I love my black people , we have endured so much through out the world. I dont believe that no orther race of people could’ve stayed the hardship that we have for the last 1,000 yrs.God bless the world!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: