SOUSA, D. Luís de
11th governor-general of Brazil.
Dom Luís de Sousa de Almeida, the 2nd Count of Prado and the 5th Lord of Beringel, was the son of Dom Luís de Sousa, who served in India and in Africa, and of Dona Joana de Sousa. His uncle, Francisco de Sousa, ruled Brazil on two different occasions.
The Count of Prado was chief Alcaide of Beja, and Knight Commander of Nossa Senhora da Purificação in the Order of Christ. He also held office as fleet official in Flanders, governor of Algarve and president of Lisbon?s City Council.
He took office as governor of Brazil on 1 January, 1617, in Pernambuco. The following year he moved to Salvador after a Royal order was issued determining Bahia as the rulers? place of residence. He lived there until 1621.
During his rule, an expedition to the mines of Caramuru took place. Although Dom Luís de Sousa had in common with his uncle a keen interest on exploring the backlands of Brazil, he also managed to extend the Portuguese dominion along the northern coast of Brazil. If, on the South, the formation of bandeiras was a privileged source of information regarding inland territory, on the North new outposts were conquered on the coastal line where fortresses were built and settlements were founded. A general fear of foreign invaders pervaded all captaincies.
Rio de Janeiro met a significant economic development under the rule of Constantino Menelau, who also strengthened the city?s defensive power. New and large allotments were assigned to settlers on the territories south of Rio.
The governor stood for the natives? integration in the new communities and supported the union of settlers with Indian women.
He married Dona Mariana de Gusmão, the daughter of the 4th Count of Medelin and Lord of Peñaranda.
He died childless in January, 1643.
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.VI, O império luso-brasileiro: 1520-1620, coord. Harold Jonhson e Maria Beatriz Nizza da Silva, Lisboa, Estampa, 1992. VARNHAGEN, Francisco Adolfo de, História Geral do Brasil: antes da sua separação e independência de Portugal, São Paulo, Ed. Melhoramentos, 4ªed., 1948. ZÚQUETE, Afonso Eduardo Martins, Nobreza de Portugal e do Brasil, Lisboa, ed. Enciclopédia, 1960-1989.
Author: Rita Domingues
Translated by: Leonor Sampaio da Silva