Bento De Goes
The first in modern times to insist upon the merits of Bento de Goes was Carl Ritter. In his standard work Asien 1) he expressed his appreciation of the work of “that courageous lay-brother of the Jesuit mission in Hindustan, whom had imposed on him the heavy task of exploring the then wholly unknown route from India to Khataja”. After Ritter we have but passing references to this long-forgotten traveller 2), till Henry Yule’s book on ancient Cathay appeared, and first assigned to Goes the place to which he was entitled 3). Nor has any later writer treated Goes’ narrative more thoroughly or at greater length than Yule. He was followed in France by Jos. Brucker, S. J. 4), whose able essay revived interest in the subject especially in Portugal, where the memory of so deserving a compatriot had almost perished. And when in 1907 the tercentenary of Goes’ death (April 11, 1607) was celebrated, the Lisbon Geographical Society commemorated his work at a ceremonial gathering 5). At the same time he was honoured by his native town of Villa Franca do Campo by the solemn unveiling of his statue. It represents Goes in the garb of a Persian merchant 1).
KeywordsTarim Basin Commercial Relation Mountain District Present Road Keen Observer
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