TEIXEIRA, D. Marcos
Bishop of Bahia, provisional governor of Brazil.
The Bishop of Bahia, Dom Marcos Teixeira, was the provisional governor of Brazil in 1624, a post he shared with auditor-general António Mesquita de Oliveira.
In 1624 Salvador was conquered by the Dutch. As soon as the governor was taken under arrest by the enemy, the settlers who had abandoned the town started the succession process in order to instate Matias de Albuquerque, provincial governor of Pernambuco, as the colony?s ruler. It was also agreed that in the meantime Judge António de Oliveira would be provisional governor. Unwilling to accept this decision, Dom Marcos Teixeira led the local residents to discharge the Judge while persuading them that he should be elected provincial governor. The Bishop had already taken issue with the previous governor, Diogo de Mendonça Furtado, on many questions, namely with regard to the intents of forming new troops into regiments and of reinforcing the contribution for defensive purposes, in Bahia. They often conflicted on matters of jurisdiction and fought over precedence.
The Bishop suggested to the Crown that some Holy Office?s services should be created and volunteered for the post of commissioned Inquisitor in Brazil.
Meanwhile, the colony?s inhabitants soon understood that the Dutch were not performing just one more piracy act, as had been formerly thought; on the contrary, they had come to stay. The Bishop led the resistance movement against the invaders and promptly organised a force that would launch a serious military attack against the city of Salvador. At the same time, the Kingdom sent two rescue fleets, one under the joint command of General Dom Manuel de Meneses and Admiral Dom Francisco de Almeida, and another, which left Cadiz, entrusted to Dom Fradique Toledo.
Dom Marcos?s troops allied to the two fleets on a naval battle that brought victory to Portugal against the armada of commander Willekens. The Dutch withdrew leaving Bahia under Portuguese occupation again.
Bishop Dom Marcos would never know the outcome of the conflict because he died before it ended, on 8 October, 1624. Bahia was again deprived of ruler, and General Matias de Albuquerque appointed his lieutenant, Francisco Nunes Marinho, provisional governor, a position he held for two months.
CAMPO BELO, Conde de, Governadores Gerais e Vice-Reis do Brasil, Lisboa, Agência Geral das Colónias, 1935. Nova história da expansão portuguesa, dir. Joel Serrão e A. H. Oliveira Marques, vol. VII, O império Luso- Brasileiro: 1620-1750, coord. de Fréderic Mauro, Lisboa, Estampa, 1991. VARNHAGEN, Francisco Adolfo de, História Geral do Brasil: antes da sua separação e independência de Portugal, São Paulo, Ed. Melhoramentos, 4ªed., 1948.
Author: Rita Domingues
Translated by: Leonor Sampaio da Silva