Please post your comments and suggestions for this article.

Comment by Vicente Calibo de Jesus on February 4th, 2009 at 2:36 am

Enrique, Magellan’s slave: Did he round the world?

There are two threads to this notion. One that he was from Cebu, in the Philippines. The other is he was from either Malacca or Sumatra.

The first was asserted by Filipino historian Carlos Quirino who said he could only have been from Cebu because he was able to converse
with the natives of Mazaua. If he spoke Malay he would not have been understood as no one in the Philippines today understands Malay. The
flaw in Quirino’s argument is that two eyewitnesses–Antonio Pigafetta and Ferdinand Magellan himself wrote Enrique came from a Malay-speaking
place. Magellan wrote Malacca as hometown of Enrique, Pigafetta said Sumatra. Another eyewitness, Gines de Mafra, expressly wrote Enrique
spoke Malay which he said was spoken widely in the region (Southeast Asia), a fact supported by linguistics experts. Quirino countered these
firsthand evidence with an absurd assertion that the eyewitnesses suppressed the true identity of Enrique as a Cebuano so that Magellan alone
can claim to having circumnavigated the globe.

The other strain of the Enrique the first circumnavigator idea asserts that from Cebu, at an undetermined date and through a hypothesized
ship owned by Malays, Enrique was able to sail back to Malacca, his hometown. The problem with this notion is that it is totally without any
written support or even oral tradition. It is pure conjecture, without basis in fact, evidence, or anything beyond its own imagined event.

New World Encyclopedia editors/writers will have to weigh the veracity of the Enrique the first circumnavigator against the fact there is
nothing to back it up.

Comment by Jennifer Tanabe on February 4th, 2009 at 10:35 am

Thank you for that information. I have updated the Slavery article to remove the controversial claim that Enrique was the first to circumnavigate the world. Simply being Magellan’s interpreter deems him worthy of note in this article.

However, the issue of whether Enrique rounded the world would be worthy of further discussion in the context of the article on Ferdinand Magellan. That article falls within the purview of a different editor. Thus, if you post your feedback on the Magellan article it would receive further consideration.

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