Why São Paulo

Bandeirantes and Jesuits

On the Brazilian lands settlement process, Portugal had to overcome several shortcomings in the formation of economically active regions. Hence, it had initiatives from representatives of its projects, from Native Americans that assisted in the acknowledgement of territories and Catholic Church itself; which participated actively on the development of the first settlements.

Bandeirantes (Expeditionary)

A grand monument, all carved in beige stone. On a broad and high base of large blocks of the same stone, from left to right, 2 men mounted on 2 horses in a galloping position. Behind, row with several men in pairs pull ropes attached to a large boat. Some men pull the boat out the front, others push in the back. In the background: Above, very blue sky without clouds; Below canopy of some trees.

Monument in tribute to the Bandeiras. Photo: José Cordeiro / SPTuris.

The Bandeirantes were men that, at the beginning of the colonization, were used by the Portuguese with the purpose of fighting rebel Native Americans and runaway slaves. They would leave São Paulo and São Vicente and head towards the inner parts of Brazil; navigating Tietê river as its major access point. The name given for these expeditions was Entradas ou Bandeiras.
The difference between both is that the Entradas were official expeditions put together by the Government, as in the Bandeiras were financed by private men, most of them plantation owners, mine owners and merchants. However, both had as its main purpose to capture Native Americans and seek for precious metals and stones. Nevertheless, the Bandeirantes became historically known as the responsible for the conquest of the majority of Brazilian territory.

The first Jesuits arrived in Brazil on 1549, with the mission of evangelizing Native Americans as well as educating and comforting spiritually the settlers and European Christians that started Brazil’s colonization process. It is attributed to the Jesuits the foundation of important villages and cities in their missions – religious practices with the fundamental purpose of propagating Christinanism amongst non-Christians.

On January 25th 1554, the Jesuits, led by José de Anchieta, performed an Eucharistic Celebration for the inauguration of the Colégio dos Jesuítas (Jesuit School), at the location which later would become Pateo do Collegio. In this way, the city of São Paulo was founded. Nowadays, the Pateo do Collegio is a historical-cultural-religious complex that belongs to Companhia de Jesus, and it has turned into a reference in terms of the preservation of the historic memory regarding the origins of the city of São Paulo.

Facade all white, with reddish-brown roofs. On the left, a fairly large building with 2 floors; The lower one has 2 navy blue doors with small windows; On the top floor, 9 windows with navy blue border. In the center, tower with 4 floors; On the ground floor, small window with navy border; On the first floor, a window with a gray border; In the second, small round window; In the third and last, steeple with two large openings on each side; Above, pointed roof with architectural elements at the tips and a vane at the top. To the right, chapel with 3 floors; On the ground floor, large wooden door; In the first, 3 windows with gray border; At the last, a small round window and a cross at the top of the roof. Above and in the background, very blue sky without clouds.

Pateo do Collegio. Foto: José Cordeiro/SPTuris.

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