Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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MARANHAO, Jeronimo de Alburqnerque (mar-an-yong'), Brazilian soldier, born in Olinda in 1548" died in Maranhao, 11 February, 1618. His mother was the daughter of the cacique Arco-Verde Mornbixaba, and his father was a Portuguese nobleman. The son accompanied his father on the latter's expeditions till he was fifteen years of age, without any education, but afterward he entered the Jesuit college, and made rapid progress. At the age of eighteen he subdued the warlike tribes of Parahyba. In 1598 he raised an expedition at his own expense, and conquered the province of Rio Grande, taking several chiefs prisoners in 1599. In 1613 he was sent by the government to Ceara, and founded the city of Nossa Senhora do Rozario. Hearing there that a French expedition had landed and taken possession of the island of Maranhao, he prepared his small army to attack the intruders. The government sent aid and appointed Alburquerque commander-in-chief. The French forces had founded the city of St. Luiz, now the capital of the province of Maranhao, and had fortified it. Alburquerque, though his forces were inferior in number, attacked them in December, 1614, and was victorious. RavardiSre, the French commander, asked for an armistice of one year, and, on account of the inferiority of his forces, Alburquerque was obliged to accept. Portugal and France disapproving the treaty and sending re-enforcements, Alburquerque gave battle to the French, who, after a desperate resistance, were defeated in January, 1615, and the Portuguese occupied the city. In a few months more the whole island and all the French colonies in Brazil were in his power, and from that time Alburquerque took the name of Maranhao, which is still used by his descendants in Brazil.
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