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Vasco da Gama is one of history’s great explorers. He would be worth meeting for several important reasons, not all of which are positive.
He was the first European to reach the coveted Indies by sea, thus avoiding the difficult and dangerous land routes. This led to the eventual establishment of Portuguese colonies and the strengthening of the Portuguese economy. In light of how badly many of the colonized countries were treated, it would be interesting to know if de Gama thought his discovery was worth it in the long view of history.
Da Gama was not a completely positive historical figure. On his second voyage to India, he captured competing trade vessels and had their crews and passengers tortured and burned alive. One might want to question da Gama as to why he thought such an act was necessary.
Later in life, da Gama was named the Count of Vidigueira by King Manuel I. This made him the first Portuguese count not of royal blood.
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