CHAIR: Renata Malcher de Araujo


  • Miguel Ángel Nieto Marquez | Universidad de Sevilla

During the 18th century, the defense of the Gulf of Mexico was a priority for the Spanish Crown, being essential the existence of a body of technicians in the area. Military engineers such as Manuel de Santisteban, Lorenzo de Solís, Agustín López de la Cámara Alta or Miguel del Corral were in charge of fortification projects, but they also planned urban, industrial, civil or religious works. This paper aims to demonstrate that Spanish military engineers didn’t strictly follow the theorical assumptions of the European treatises in America. To achieve this objective, a series of files from the Archivo General de Indias (Sevilla) have been considered. In addition, this information has been contrasted with said treatises and with the preserved projects. These results show that the Gulf of Mexico became a “Learning Place” for Spanish engineers. The particularities of the Caribbean exceeded the knowledge acquired by engineers in academies. Therefore, they had to adapt to the demands of the place and the authorities.

Miguel Ángel Nieto Marquez is graduated in Primary Education Teaching and graduated in Art History at the Universidad de Córdoba, Spain. Later he studied the University Master’s Degree in Heritage Andalusian Artistic and its Ibero-American Projection at the Facultad de Geografía e Historia of the Universidad de Sevilla, Spain, whose final work (TFM) was awarded and published by the Comité Español de Historia del Arte (CEHA). He is currently enrolled in the program Doctorate in History and belongs to the research team PGC2018-099323-B-I00 of the Universidad de Sevilla, entitled “Arquitecturas del Poder en el Caribe y el Sudeste Asiático. 1729-1764”. He has six articles in the magazines Archivo Hispalense, Laboratorio de Arte, Boletín de Arte, Liño, Temas Americanistas, Fronteras de la Historia and Imafronte, and has participated in various national and international conferences.



  • Sara Ventura da Cruz | Institute of Interdisciplinary Research (III-UC) and the Centre for Social Studies (CES-UC) of the University of Coimbra

In the second half of the 18th century, the Portuguese Crown tried to re-establish its colonies in Africa, with a set of reforms planned in the frame of what can be perceived as an enlightenment inspired political project to the Portuguese Empire. A programme where economical activities, industry, navigation, but also urbanism and settlement policies, were seen as complementary and that should be promoted simultaneously. During this time, in the proposed reforms, territory and urban space were, in fact, used as resources and instruments for the achievement of that policy. In this context, the role of military engineers in the field was crucial, participating in the design and planning of defence systems and military or government facilities, inspecting works on the ground, establishing towns, etc. They were also responsible for representing the territory. Their reports, maps and descriptions were the base over which Crown policies were conceptualized and imagined in the centre of the Empire. Within this framework, this paper proposes to discuss the re-establishment in Luanda of the Aula de Geometria e Fortificação (Geometry and Fortification Class) in 1765 and the careers of those who studied there. For the Angolan Crown administration, it was the opportunity to create a considerable “workforce” from the colony to work in the colony, and bypass the limitations of the military engineers coming from Lisbon, whose lack of adequacy to the climate constrained their performance in the Sertão, Angola’s hinterland. In the midst of the formal learning structure, and despite the lack of recognition by the Portuguese Crown structures, a group of students went to form an important generation. Their performance went beyond the limits of their technical formation, assuming important roles in social life and government.

Sara Ventura da Cruz (Aveiro, 1978). Graduate and Master in Architecture by the University of Coimbra (FCTUC, in 2005 and 2011). Postgraduate in Planning, Urbanism and Environmental Law (CEDOUA-UC, 2009). Since 2012, is a PhD student in the PhD Programme “Heritages of Portuguese Influence” from the Institute of Interdisciplinary Research (III-UC) and the Centre for Social Studies (CES-UC) of the University of Coimbra, where she is developing her thesis on “Territorial visions of the Portuguese Enlightenment in Southern Africa”, for which she obtained a doctoral scholarship from Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT).



  • Antonieta Reis Leite |Centre for Social Studies University of Coimbra

Between 1766 and 1832 a general captaincy operated in the Azores islands as a form of government. It came to replace the eight hereditary captaincies that administratively organized the archipelago since the settlement began. Following other general captaincies implemented in the Portuguese colonies of Brazil and Africa, the new government should be centralized in a single person, the Captain-General, appointed by the king to manage the territory, and in a specific place, Angra, at that moment named the capital city of the Azores. The establishment of a general captaincy was not an action for legitimizing the possession of land, since the once deserted islands were discovered and settled by Portugal since the 15th century.  Instead, its main objective was the reaffirmation of such possession by promoting an almost re-foundation of the occupation process. As it was well voiced in the foundational documents of the captaincy, Marquis of Pombal, by the hand of his brother Mendonça Furtado, ordered the construction of a “new world” in the Azores. Architecture and urbanism were central instruments in the pursuit of such objectives. Namely preparing surveys of the territory, as well as projects for new buildings and infrastructures, such as ports, roads, or forts, beyond the requalification of Angra in the capital city. The military engineers appointed to work in the archipelago during this period were the main agents for idealizing a “new world” for the islands, which is why this paper will also analyse their training and professional paths, as well as the Angra Military Academy foundation process, in 1810. In summary, this paper wishes at contributing to the vast literature dedicated to the general captaincy period in the Azores, by specifically focusing on its’s built environment history.

Antonieta Reis Leite is an assistant researcher (CEEC FCT fellow), and an Invited Professor at dARQ University of Coimbra. She was trained as an architect and obtained her degree from the University of Coimbra in 2000, she has a DEA in Art History from University Pablo de Olavide in 2005, and she holds a Ph.D. from the University of Coimbra in 2012 for research in the Azores islands’ settlement process. She has held funded postdoctoral positions at the CES-UC and at CHAM FCSH NOVA and the University of Azores. Her work focuses on the building process of the Portuguese Atlantic World, centring on the Early Modern Atlantic islands and Atlantic shores colonization process.



  • João Paulo Cabeleira Marques Coelho |Lab2PT/EAAD

The present proposal intends to explore a set of cartographic campaigns that took place in southern Brazil, through the historical collection and analysis of the produced maps. Being these campaigns an essential of the political action of empires, the role played by engineers, builders and cartographers assumes particular importance in such context. Thus, from the recognition and territorial representation achieved by such campaigns, this proposal is grounded on a drawing research methodology. It aims to analyze the successive expeditions through the observance of its products (written and drawn documental sources). As such, through the superposition of the produced maps and charts, it is possible to verify the progressive refinement of the territorial representation, be it relative to the applied methods, instrumental resources and graphic repertoire, or in the densification and refinement of information from the natural and humanized territory. A path to recognize the circulation of both agents as well as technical and scientific knowledge within the imperial space. Due to the length and richness of such period, it is proposed to focus particularly on the period and action undertaken by D. Luís António de Sousa Botelho Mourão, 4th Morgado of Mateus, who leads the Captaincy of São Paulo from 1765 to 1775. In the aftermath of the Madrid Treaty (1750), expeditions such as the ones of river Tieté, Sertão of Tibagi, Iguaçu river, Ivaí and Tibagi are essential to the recognition of the territory and the consolidation of borders between the Iberian imperial forces as well as the administrative limits between São Paulo, Paraná, Santa Catarina, Rio Grande do Sul and Mato Grosso do Sul. Expeditions that allowed us to identify the presence and circulation of agents, along with the extensive graphic material produced.

João Paulo Cabeleira Marques Coelho is an Architect and Assistant Professor at the School of Architecture, Art and Design (EAAD), University of Minho. He coordinates the courses of Geometry, Theories and Tratadistics and Advanced Studies in Architectural Culture. Graduated in Architecture (2002) and Master in Architectural Heritage (2006), both by the University of Porto, his doctoral degree was granted by the University of Minho (2015). Departing from his research on Imaginary architectures he analyzes treatises on architecture, optics and perspective, looking for intersections between projective science, perception and the resolution and representation of space.



  • Iris Kantor | Universidade de São Paulo

One of the most prolific cartographers of the Royal Maritime and Military Society, created in Portugal in 1798, was the pilot and hydrographic engineer José Fernandes Portugal, born and raised in Rio de Janeiro (1755-1817). His maps of the Brazilian coast were considered by Admiral José Maria Dantas Pereira as the most accurate in the transition from the 18th to the 19th century. At the age of 34, he composed, in the city of Salvador, a nautical chart of the Eastern and Southern Ocean on large parchment. In the service of the Portuguese Royal Navy, he left more than a dozen geographic maps of the entire coast of Brazil, with data on altitudes, relief and bathymetry; he also wrote cabotage routes from Maranhão to Rio da Prata, from Cabo de Santo Agostinho to Baía da Traição (1809); and prepared a nautical diary from Pernambuco to the island of Fernando de Noronha (1798). Jaime Cortesão highlighted the importance of his maps for coastal navigation and ship landing. His charts recorded the Southeast trade wind systems, and the North equatorial sea currents, the Benguela, Guinea and Guyana currents. In this communication, it is interesting to present how his work entangled different traditions of representation of the port cities on the shores of the South Atlantic, as he incorporates patterns of graphic representation and conventions used by captains and hydrographers of the Royal Navy in France, Spain and England. He is a pilot and hydrographer trained locally, at the Academies of Fortification and Artillery of Salvador. In Recife, he founded a piloting school for the merchant navy and was involved in the Pernambuco political revolution of 1817. Without ever having been to Europe, his work has become very well known by the english cartographers. This is an important example to understand patterns of transmission geographical information about the port system in the South Atlantic in the age of constitutional revolutions.

Iris Kantor is Professor of Iberian History at the University of São Paulo. Coordinator of the Laboratory for the Study of Historical Cartography of the Jaime Cortesão Chair (FFLCH_USP). Productivity Cnpq Scholarship 2. Member of the Brazilian Historical and Geographical Institute. Editor of the E-Journal of Portuguese History. Was visiting scholar at Stanford University, Instituto de Ciencias Sociais (Lisboa) and at EHESS (Paris). Has Published: Um Mundo Sobre Papel: livros, gravuras e impressos flamengos nos impérios português e espanhol. 1. ed. São Paulo, 2013; Esquecidos & Renascidos: Historiografia acadêmica luso-americana (1724-1759), 2004. v. 1; Festa: Cultura e Sociabilidade na América Portuguesa. São Paulo, 2001. v. 2.


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