The transfer of the Portuguese court and ideas of empire.
The "United Kingdom:" The Quest for Imperial Unity and the Triumph of Monarchy in the New World
In 1815 the Portuguese crown bestowed upon Brazil the title of reino (kingdom). (3) With the corresponding change in the royal title--the first in 300 years--Dom Joao became the first, and ultimately the last, sovereign of the "United Kingdom of Portugal, Brazil and the Algarve". The new title, as the royal charter noted, was already in use at the Congress of Vienna, where Portuguese representatives thus evaded awkward references to the prince regent's "colonial" residence. As the statesmen Jose da Silva Lisboa explained, it was "absurd to consider as a Colony the Sovereign's Land of Residence". Indeed, with the transfer of the court, one Portuguese expatriate wrote to royal minister Vila Nova Portugal, "the politics of Europe and perhaps of the universe changed" because the prince regent had given a certain "tom (character)" to the New World, making "the name colony disappear". In other words, the new title simply affirmed what to many was already evident: the prince regent's presence in Rio alone ended Brazil's former subordinate position within the Portuguese empire. (4)
Yet, as Silva Lisboa and others argued as well, both the transfer of the court and the subsequent designation of Brazil as a kingdom needed to be considered as resulting from, rather than leading to, a change in Brazil's status. If the sovereign's residence could not be regarded as a colony, it was also "absurd", Silva Lisboa wrote, to regard Brazil as a "simple Commercial Factory" or an "uncultivated Tropical Sesmaria (royal land grant)". Even before the prince regent's arrival at Rio eighteenth-century reformers, such as Silva Lisboa's patron, the Minister of Foreign Affairs Rodrigo de Souza Coutinho had argued that Brazil's size and natural resources made it the "most essential" part of the monarchy. While geography, or what Silva Lisboa described as "the geological system", had relegated Brazil to the category of "appendix of the territory, albeit venerable, of the Estado-Pai (Father-State)". With the outbreak of the Peninsular War it had become apparent that Brazil contained the means to safeguard the Estado-Pai itself. Within the American continent, he asserted, the Portuguese monarchy could "build a towering front so as to gain respect from friendly Nations, and expel the envy and malignance of any Instigators of Public Disorder". In granting the title of kingdom, the prince regent formally acknowledged this truth. (5)
As memorialists and officials weighed these various motives behind the royal charter, all agreed that for the Portuguese monarchy the end of its American "colonies" did not mean the end of its empire. The re-denomination was conceived as a measure that indeed strengthened, rather than weakened, the ties between Portugal and Brazil. While the terms "conquest", "possession" and, in the eighteenth century, "colony", were part of what Silva Lisboa described as a "vulgar nomenclature, that impolitically separated into distinct classes and castes, Vassals of the same Sovereign", the charter designating Brazil as a "kingdom" was, on the contrary, superior "in motive and effect" to even the English Magna Carta. For, as Silva Lisboa explained, it reflected a "new conciliatory System" that nurtured a "Spirit of Nationality" and invigorated the "homogenous Political Body of the Monarchy". (6) Evoking an earlier reformism that had sought to ensure the unification of what Souza Coutinho referred to in 1787 as "all the parts that constituted the whole", Dom Joao "consolidated" the empire, one preacher proclaimed, by bringing "the principles of social life" to "the most distant parts of [this] political Body". (7) Thus, to further convey this understanding of the empire as what the diplomat Correa Henriques described as "a single moral and political dominion" (8) the royal charter not only established that Brazil itself was a kingdom, but also reasserted the empire's inherent unity by simultaneously defining Brazil as one part of the "one and only Kingdom (um so e unico Reino)", "the United Kingdom (Reino Unido)", of the Portuguese monarch.
This fundamental preeminence of "the United Kingdom" cohered with the ad hoc nature of administrative change in the 1810s. While powerful institutions of imperial scope, such as the Desembargo do Paco (Tribunal of the High Court), the Casa de Suplicacao do Brasil (Court of Appeals) and the Erario Real (Royal Treasury), were recreated in Rio de Janeiro, in chartering the Kingdom of Brazil the crown did not seek to create an autonomous administrative unit. Judicial and bureaucratic jurisdictions in the north and northeastern provinces of Brazil remained as divided between Rio de Janeiro and Lisbon as they were before the transfer of the court. While this may have amounted to, as one historian has recently argued, a "failure to consolidate the new kingdom", (9) it also reflected the crown's vision of and primary commitment to the "homogenous" whole. "One political body", embodied in the layers of bureaucracy that stretched to and from Portugal and Brazil and beyond remained more important than any one of its parts. As new imperial discourse and practice the United Kingdom thus affirmed the change in Brazil's status produced by the transfer of the court by giving it a legal dimension, and defined that change as having served a fundamentally conservative goal: the triumph of a unified, historic empire.
In delineating the new imperial status quo, royal officials and memorialists also responded to a question asked throughout the contemporary Atlantic world: how to represent unprecedented events? (10) In this case, how to represent the end of the European-American hierarchy within the Portuguese world in a way that re-constituted rather than undermined the historic empire? One answer came a year after the prince regent issued the charter when the United Kingdom was given a simple, yet ultimately enduring, visual expression in a new coat of arms. The Portuguese monarchy's ancient heraldry, the quinas--five small coats of arms forming one large coat of arms inaugurated in the reign of Afonso 111 (1245-79)--, filled the center of a blue and gold sphere, "the arms of [Rio's] City Council". Above both the heraldry and the sphere stood a crown. (11) This iconographic fusion, as the royal charter sanctioning the new seal explained, was a reflection of the "perfect union and identity" of the residents of Portugal, the Algarve and Brazil. As the seal also made manifest, this union was guaranteed by the crown, a truly imperial force above all and therefore greater than any one of its territories. (12) Or, as Correa Henriques asserted in his memorial written that same year, in the Portuguese empire "the integrity of dominion" belonged only to the "permanent moral force" of the sovereign.
Here, however, Correa Henriques was not writing to defend the United Kingdom alone. The death of Maria I in 1816 and the prince regent's imminent succession had given the questions of sovereignty and of the sovereign's "land" and "place" a particular urgency. For Correa Henriques, the unprecedented ascension to the throne of a European sovereign in the New World was justified precisely because of his empire's "wholeness". As long as the prince regent lived within his "land or dominion (terreno ou dominacao)", Correa Henriques explained, recalling the statesman Luis da Cunha's early eighteenth-century justifications for a transfer of the court, his residence would be "the seat of the general union, from which emanated a primary force that gives him power as a political body to govern". In other words, because the kingdom was "united" and because Portuguese law did not recognize a "certain place" for succession within the "whole of the dominion", the place where the ceremony took place, as well as the monarch's residence, had no particular political-legal consequence. (13) Two years later, commemorating the tenth anniversary of Dom Joao's arrival at Rio, the royal preacher Januario de Cunha Barbosa offered a similarly reassuring explanation of imperial integrity in the wake of the transfer of the court: "the nature of bodies does not change with a change of [their] center. (14)
In 1818, then, the Acclamation, as the rite of royal succession was called, was celebrated in Rio de Janeiro as the triumph of both royal authority and the indivisible and historic unity of the three kingdoms. The novelty of the commemorations within the city, the "magnificence and beauty never before seen in Rio de Janeiro", was circumscribed by that which was old: a ritual of monarchical power that originated with Afonso Henriques (1128-85), the first king of Portugal. On a large veranda, "according to ancient custom", Dom Joao both took and received oaths of loyalty. (15) In Dom Joao's procession to the royal chapel and in the festivities that followed, sumptuously decorated chambers and facades, triumphal arches, fireworks, music and allegorical tributes evoked the empire's history and, as the official chronicler suggested, the "ecstasy" that the both the United Kingdom and the Acclamation produced in all of its vassals. (16)
Yet, even as the United Kingdom and the Acclamation presented a conservative discursive framework in which the historical monarchy ensured the unity of the empire, this framework was also sufficiently broad as to allow for competing understandings of the consequences of recent events. Recourse to history in defining royal authority and empire in the New World, in particular, produced its own crisis of representation. For while history revealed that Brazil was, as Silva Lisboa wrote as a royal censor in 1818, "the amplification of the Mother Country (Mai Patria) for the Lusitanian Monarchy [obtained] through just titles of discovery, occupation and conquest in accordance with the laws of nations", (17) with the transfer of the court this historical amplification of Portugal appeared to have reached an ultimate conclusion. The result was, as one playwright suggested the same year, bewildering. "Are you not my conquest?" asks the allegory of Portugal, heroic conqueror, of Brazil, "an Indian richly dressed in feathers" and "reanimated" in the "August Presence" of the king, in a drama presented to commemorate the Acclamation. Although the past could not be "denied", Brazil responds, the status of conquest nevertheless "was ended" by the Portuguese monarch and his grace of making Brazil a kingdom. The reconciliation of these differences and "discord", both the allegories and the audience then learn, depended on Portugal's and Brazil's recognition of the need to "bury once and for all ancient quarrels". (18) Rather than an indisputable lesson of history, the consequences of the transfer of the court--the end of Brazil as a conquest--would have to be negotiated.
This challenge of reconciling the past and the future, as well as the potential for equivocation, was also summarized in the title of one report on the "Empire of Brazil, or New Lusitanian Empire" (emphasis is mine). (19) On the one hand, the "Empire of Brazil" and the "New Lusitanian Empire" were synonymous: expressions of both the historic Portuguese ideal of political renewal and the European project to civilize the New World. Thus, as Silva Lisboa argued, "the Union of [the crown's] States, with equitable political Rights" was "the most expedient and decisive Consolidation of the Greatness and Stability of the Lusitanian Monarchy, and of the place that it deserves in the Order of the Powers who most influence the progress of civilization in both Hemispheres". (20) As Goncalves dos Santos allegorized the culmination of this progress and the moment of union, Brazil, represented by an Indian, shed his past, "the ribbons and feathers with which he was adorned until December 16, 1815', in order to receive the monarchy. America's "former nakedness" was finally covered by the "brilliant crown" and "the royal cloak" offered by the prince regent. America, in other words, was, once again, redeemed from savagery and paganism by the beneficent tutelage of Europe. (21)
On the other hand, however, the "Empire of Brazil" and the "New Lusitanian Empire" could be read as alternatives: America or Europe. The new coat of arms itself, as Ana Cristina Araujo has noted, embodied this tension. As "a symbolic recapitulation of the history of the Portuguese colonial empire", she explains, the sphere suggested not only the expansive Portuguese dominions, but also the emerging power of Brazil. While the quinas, in turn, recalled Portugal's glorious past, their location within the sphere consecrated the empire's American destiny (ponto de chegada). (22) Even Goncalves dos Santos' well-established iconographic configuration suggested the possibility of this fundamental departure from the centuries-old trajectory of European expansion and colonization. Europe's conquests notwithstanding, it was, after all, America who now wore the crown and to whom "powerful European monarchs" gave homage, a fact, as Goncalves dos Santos' himself recognized, that was dramatized for Rio's residents in 1817 when the Austrian princess Leopoldina, "the daughter of a Caesar", arrived to assume her position as spouse of the heir to the Portuguese throne, Dom Pedro. (23)
Fueling this tension between Europe and America, between imperial integrity and an Americanization of the monarchy, was what the statesman and memorialist Silvestre Pinheiro Ferreira characterized as the decade's great "question of state": the future, and permanent, location of the sovereign himself. At stake, wrote Pinheiro Ferreira, was "nothing less than the end of the torrential evil with which the century's revolutionary vertigo [...] devastated Europe, and threatened the [prince regent's] states with dissolution and total ruin", for both a continued absence of royalty in Portugal and the royal family's departure from Brazil left the monarchy vulnerable to revolution. The salvation of both the monarchy and the empire, Pinheiro Ferreira surmised, therefore would require an entirely new organization of royal power. In 1814 he responded to this question by recommending that royal authority be divided within the empire, with Dom Joao assuming the title of "Emperor of Brazil, sovereign of Portugal", while his son Pedro would go to Portugal as "king, heir to the throne of Brazil". De-centering royal power and multiplying the source of political authority so as to provide for a forceful representation of that authority over a larger area, Pinheiro Ferreira sought to diminish the sense of marginality as well as the physical margins that had previously defined Brazil's relation to Portugal and that now appeared to define Portugal's relation to Brazil. (24)
In creating the United Kingdom, however, the crown left both the structure of royal governance unchanged and the future residence undefined. Instead, potential contradictions within the United Kingdom were resolved by recalling the events that had precipitated the empire's reconfiguration. Conflicts within the monarchy and empire, in other words, were suppressed in favor of conflicts that transcended the Portuguese world. The creation of the United Kingdom and the Acclamation thus became celebrations of the defeat of the French Revolution. As one commemorative ode rendered recent events: "The Lusitanians were ruled by a light and gentle Scepter/ Within the stormy Universe/ Of a perverse system/ the Pious Prince offered Benign shelter [...]." (25) The Kingdom of Brazil also emerged as a victorious bulwark against the spread of republican insurgencies from neighboring Spanish America and a check against the influence of the United States which, according to Silva Lisboa, "showed all the symptoms of supporting the presumptuous system of the Autocrat of France". For a besieged old regime and empire, the path of restoration and the victory had led to Brazil. Or, as Silva Lisboa allegorized the creation of a new court, history was rendered meaningful by mythology. Rio de Janeiro was, he proclaimed, "the Promontory Peak from which were issued the rays of an active and holy war" used by "the Heavens to defeat the Titans who dared to attack Olympus". (26)
The "Liberation of Commerce": Empire and the "New Science" of Political Economy
While following the transfer of the court, the empire was defined by the triumph of the monarchy and its United Kingdom over the French Revolution and Napoleon, it was also, memorialists argued, built upon the ruins of mercantilism. Dom Joao both "delivered the herculean blow to the Hydra of Jacobinism" and, as Silva Lisboa wrote, slew the "Dragon of Monopoly" that together "had attacked the vital organs of the Social Body". Indeed, in Silva Lisboa's new imperial geography, the most prominent feature of Rio de Janeiro's landscape, the mountain of rock known as the Sugar Loaf, became the second Cape of Good Hope, the site from which the prince regent, in the spirit of his fifteenth-century ancestors, secured both "the salvation of Civil Order" and "the opening of Global Com,, merce". (27)
The act to which Silva Lisboa referred with such grandiose imagery was the opening of Brazil's ports, an act that consistently has been cited by historians as the defining moment of Dom Joao's reign. In Bahia in 1808, even before his arrival at Rio de Janeiro, the prince regent issued a royal charter that dismantled Portugal's three-hundred-year-old commercial monopoly. For the first time in the history of the empire, merchants of all powers "in peace and harmony" with the Portuguese crown were allowed to both import and export from Brazilian ports. It was an act, as well, in which Silva Lisboa himself, the future Visconde de Cairu, played a central role, for it was reportedly he who succeeded in convincing the prince regent and his counselors that the French occupation of the Iberian Peninsula made it impossible to continue to limit trade exclusively to Portugal. Opening Brazil's ports, he explained, would allow American commerce to continue during the war. Consequently, the crown would collect required duties, revenue needed to fund its continental armies. (28)
The charter inspired by this line of argument thus was an "interim and provisional" wartime measure that made important exceptions for the royal monopolies of brazil-wood and diamonds as well as for wine, oil and aguardente. In the months that followed, further restrictions limited the scope of "free trade" and the new, increased duties on direct commerce, originally applied without regard to the origin of the manufactures or the ships that brought them, were reduced in favor of Portuguese goods. (29) Yet these exceptions not withstanding, supporters of the charter defined it as the first step toward creating a new "general system" for commercial exchange based on liberal principles. It was, they repeatedly insisted, an unequivocal point of no return and the harbinger of a new greater era. For after 1808, wrote a characteristically enthusiastic Goncalves dos Santos, "Brazil [was] no longer an enclosed garden, forbidden to other mortals". Or, as one slogan revealed at the Acclamation proclaimed, Dom Joao had "liberated commerce". (30)
Beginning in 1808, the task for royal officials and memorialists thus became how to define the meaning of this liberation within the empire's future; to articulate the end of imperial monopoly and the discourse of imperial unity. For some, a connection was established in the creation of the Kingdom of Brazil itself, recognized as the end of a process that open ports had initiated: the demise of what Goncalves dos Santos called "the old colonial system". (31) Indeed, throughout the decade that followed the transfer of the court, the end of monopoly was cited together with the creation of political equity as an act that established the first solid basis for unity in the empire's history. Opening the commerce "of this most rich portion of the New World to all civilized people", claimed the newly--arrived Portuguese military official and memorialist Francisco de Borja Garcao Stoeckler, made available to its inhabitants the most abundant source of wealth, and prosperity". "Justice", he explained, had "ma[de] all equal", "elevat[ed] Brazil to the dignified status of Kingdom and ended the disastrous rivalry that existed between American and European Portuguese". (32) The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Rodrigo de Souza Coutinho, similarly asserted that open ports created a new basis for imperial integrity. "Liberal principles", he wrote, created a "vast System of Commerce" stretching from the Atlantic to Asia, in which Europe, if no longer at the center, certainly remained a beneficiary. "Portugal will always be a natural storehouse for the products of Brazil", he wrote in 1809, and now "the size of that production will be much larger". (33) One year later, he made the same point more dramatically. "[Notwithstanding all the anxieties of the visionaries who follow the principles of mercantilism", he asserted, "the emancipation of Brazil will be very useful [to Portugal]". (34) Under the aegis of "liberal legislation" the potential of Brazil's "copious and various precious resources", noted in justifying the royal charter of 1815, would finally be fulfilled. Breaking "the chains that imprisoned commerce" would unleash ostensibly natural processes of expansion. Utility would join paradisiacal fertility to create a universal prosperity into which any divisions within the empire would be subsumed. (35)
Such a reconciliation of open ports and imperial unity, however, was based upon the idea that the liberation of commerce produced quantitative rather than qualitative change and that the benefits of this liberation would be measured primarily within the empire itself. Indeed, Souza Coutinho's vision of new "System of Commerce" recalled earlier mercantilist reforms that sought to reduce particular colonial monopolies in order to invigorate Portuguese-Brazilian commercial exchange as a whole. In contrast to earlier reforms, however, Brazil's ports were now open to not only Portuguese in Portugal, Brazil, Africa and Asia, but to merchants of all friendly nations as well. Open ports allowed foreigners direct and legal access to resources and markets that the Portuguese crown had previously guarded for the benefit of metropolitan interests. Consequently, to redefine the new empire also required accounting for the apparent elimination of its historic boundaries.
One way to explain these changes was to redefine the empire's center. While Souza Coutinho earlier had claimed that following imperial reform Portugal would retain the role of entrepot, he gradually acknowledged that this position was truly occupied by Brazil. Thus, the opening of Brazilian ports could be understood as the transference to Brazil of the access to ports in Portugal that foreign merchants had enjoyed historically. In 1811 in legislation supported by Souza Coutinho that ratified the rights of merchants in Brazil to trade directly with the eastern Portuguese dominions, the crown indeed named Brazil as the "commercial emporium" between Europe and Asia. (36) The problem with this redefinition, however, was that it simply inverted the hierarchies and inequalities between Portugal and Brazil that the opening of Brazil's ports was said to have destroyed. Distinct interests within the empire continued to appear as necessarily either superior or subordinate to one another. The "old colonial system" was simply replaced by a new colonial system in which, as critics in Portugal denounced, Portugal was the colony. (37)
Another way of integrating open ports and the future of empire was offered by Jose da Silva Lisboa. Silva Lisboa also saw this "new empire" as American, yet his imperial vision did not depend on a redefinition of center and periphery, or a new hierarchy of interests. On the contrary, recognizing the true nature of commerce, he argued, rendered these categories unnecessary. For Silva Lisboa, the opening of Brazil's ports and subsequent debates represented the high point in a long career in royal service that was well underway when the prince regent arrived in Brazil. Born in Bahia in 1756, the son of a Portuguese architect and his Bahian wife, Silva Lisboa was sent to study at Coimbra, where he earned degrees in Greek, Hebrew, canon law and philosophy. After leaving Coimbra he entered royal service as a professor of philosophy in Salvador, Bahia. In 1797 he was appointed Deputy and Secretary to the Mesa de Inspeccao da Agricultura, e Comercio (Board of Agriculture and Commerce) at the Bahian capital, a position compatible with his growing interest in commercial law and the principles of the "new science" of political economy. It was during these years leading up to the transfer of the court that Silva Lisboa established himself as the Portuguese-speaking world's most committed disciple of Adam Smith (1723-1790), whose defense of "an independent and voluntary world market" he passionately endorsed. (38) Indeed, within a historiography that has broadly defined the Brazilian reception of liberalism as incomplete, misunderstood, or misplaced, (39) Silva Lisboa has the ironic honor of being criticized for having embraced the Invisible Hand too completely. Comparing Silva Lisboa and the North American Hamilton, Celso Furtado both noted that "the Brazilian more clearly reflected ideas which were to prevail in England years later" and dismissed the grounds for his conviction. Silva Lisboa "superstitiously believed in the invisible hand,'" Furtado claimed, and merely "repeated: laissez faire, laissez passer, laissez vendre". (40)
Silva Lisboa's enthusiasm for political economy, however, was in fact not superstitious, but rather based upon the reading and dissemination of political economy's texts. His own reading of Adam Smith, whom he identified as the "second Father of Civilized People", led him to write Principios de Economia Politica, published in Lisbon in 1804, (41) and undoubtedly inspired his son's translation of a three volume compendium edition of Smith's Wealth of Nations, published by the Royal Press in Rio de Janeiro in 1811-12. The "most substantial principles of Political Economy", Bento da Silva Lisboa wrote in his introduction to the first volume, should be of interest not only to statesmen, but also to "the middle classes, who have contributed so much to the good order of national wealth". Indeed, he asserted, it "is of interest to all uninstructed citizens that the just rules of civil life, upon which industry and prosperity depends, do not remain, as they have up until now, merely arcane". (42) As this passage also reveals, for Silva Lisboa and his son political economy was conceived of not only as the administration of public revenue, but also as what J. G. A. Pocock has defined as "a more complex, and more ideological, enterprise aimed at establishing the moral and political, cultural, and economic conditions of life in advancing commercial societies". (43) In other words, the scope of Silva Lisboa's inquiry was not contained to the "quantifiable material entities" of economy, although they were also very much a concern. Rather, as John Stuart Mill would assert some years later, his study of economic conditions belonged to a "moral and social science [...] the object of what is called Political Economy". (44)
This "commercial humanism"--to use Pocock's term--represented a break with both "enlightened mercantilism" and Souza Coutinho's most recent reformism, in which commerce was held to be a simple exchange of commodities that generated wealth. For Silva Lisboa, in contrast, commerce produced not only quantitative, but also qualitative results. "Where Commerce is free", he wrote, paraphrasing Montesquieu, "this openness brings with it the correction of transitory anomalies", (45) a fact that was evident, Silva Lisboa argued, in the redress of afflictions it afforded the United States following its war of independence. (46) From this principle it followed that the end of European monopolies could not be regarded as either the cause or symptom of Portugal's decadence. For "free trade, regulated by morality, righteousness and common good", Silva Lisboa wrote in his Observacoes sobre o Comercio Franco no Brasil, published in 1808, was "the life-giving principle of social order and the most natural and sure means to the prosperity of nations". Nor could the end of barriers to foreign trade with Brazil be regarded as the end of the monarchy's imperial boundaries. Rather, open ports signified the infinite expansion of these boundaries; they formed "the Cornerstone of the edifice of civilization and the basis for a "New Empire". (47)
This defense of commerce as a "civilizing agency", as Anthony Pagden has recently shown, was debated widely throughout Europe in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries and summarized in a passage from The Spirit of the Laws which Silva Lisboa himself cited: "where there is commerce, there is gentleness of customs, and where there is gentleness of customs there is commerce". (48) In the case of Silva Lisboa, this firm link between trade and civilization also meant that even as the principles of political economy dismantled "the old colonial system", they retained the European colonial project intact. In other words, in Silva Lisboa's ideally liberal nineteenth-century empire, free trade would supplant conquest as the vehicle through which the European "social order" would be spread. Evincing what Pagden has described as political economy's commitment to the idea that "contemporary commercial society was the highest condition to which man could aspire and that such a society was a possible outcome--possible for peoples everywhere--of a determinate, intelligible, and, to some degree, controllable, historical process", Silva Lisboa's work stood, as we shall below, as an attempt to discern and foster that process within the Portuguese empire. (49)
Silva Lisboa's persistent references to "social order" also make clear his assessment of revolutionary politics. He was, as Sergio Buarque de Holanda categorized him, a "traditionalist", committed to defending the Portuguese monarchy, religion and aristocracy. "The Coryphaei of impiety, libertinage and religious and civil heterodoxies", Silva Lisboa insisted, could not be tolerated within the new empire, for these had inspired the French to usurp "established government" and, consequently, "annihilate the fundamental principles of civil order" manifest in nobility. (50) Accordingly, as a member of the Junta da Impressao Regia (Royal Press Board) in Rio, he presented a formidable although, as he himself recognized, only partially successful defense against the "opiates" of the French Revolution by censoring both imported works and manuscripts, ensuring that they were duly expurgated "of that which was most offensive to Christianity and the cur rent establishments of civil order". (51) This commitment to a traditional order also meant that in using the principles of the "new science" of political economy to define the new empire, Silva Lisboa both had to reconcile the opening of Brazil's ports with historic imperial unity and to explain why dismantling economic privileges did not mean the end of other (political) privileges as well. In other words, Silva Lisboa had to explain how the Portuguese empire could withstand a transformation without undermining the pillars of its historical edifice: the monarchy, tradition and religion.
To do so, Silva Lisboa turned not to Smith, but to another critic from the British Isles, Edmund Burke (1729-1797), whose work he translated and published in Rio de Janeiro in 1812 with a dedication to the British representative to Dom Joao's court, Lord Strangford. (52) Burke's claim that liberty could not exist outside the established "social order" was a principle that, as Jose Honorio Rodrigues noted, guided Silva Lisboa's career. (53) Burke's analysis of the French Revolution appealed to Silva Lisboa because, among other things, it rescued liberality from revolutionary liberty by reasserting its basis in "ancient chivalry" and manners. (54) As Silva Lisboa explained in the preface to his translation, Burke made plain the difference between "the liberal ideas of a Paternal Regency" and "the crude theories of metaphysical speculators, or Machiavellists, who had perturbed, or perverted, the immutable Social Order". (55) Burke then further elucidated the fundamental relationship between a conservative "social order" and commerce in his claim that in the "spirit of gentlemen" and the "spirit of religion" were the principles upon which "all good things which are connected with manners and with civilization" had been based. "[C]ommerce and trade and manufacture", Burke explained, were consequently "but effects [of manners and civilization] which, as first causes, we choose to worship". From this claim it followed, as Pocock has explained, that to "overthrow religion and nobility" was "to destroy the possibility of commerce itself". (56) Accordingly, with Burke Silva Lisboa could firmly place the defense of monarchy, religion and an aristocratic "intelligentsia" at the base of the new empire, making a reassuringly clear connection between the monarch's traditional "liberality" and the "liberal" gesture of opening Brazil's ports. His traditionalism, in this sense, represented neither a departure from, nor, as Buarque de Holanda argued, a mis-reading of Smith, (57) but rather a reading of Smith, and of political economy in general, through Burke. As Silva Lisboa thus learned, if commerce were to achieve its civilizing mission, its own civilized origins had to be secure.
And yet there is, as may be clear, an important tension in the work of Smith and Burke, and in Silva Lisboa's readings of their works. While Burke's assertion, as Pocock notes, "that commerce is dependent upon manners" was shared by some political economists, Smith and others had identified the growth of exchange, along with production and the diversification of labor, as "the motor force which created the growth of manners". (58) Perhaps in engaging in these two visions of the origins of commercial civilization Silva Lisboa, like Montesquieu, wanted it both ways: "everywhere there are gentle mores, there is commerce" and "everywhere there is commerce, there are gentle mores". (59) There is, however, also a feature of Burke's thought that allowed Silva Lisboa to elide the tension between causes and effects of commerce in his own understanding of the empire in which he lived. Burke, as Pocock explains, "anchored commerce in history, rather than presenting it as the triumph over history". (60) The same could be said of Silva Lisboa and, as Silva Lisboa would assert, of the Portuguese nation itself. The Portuguese were not, as were the French revolutionaries and the British functionaries in India who, as Uday Singh Mehta notes, Burke derided as rootless, "commercial mercenaries unmarked by the burdens and privileges" of society. (61) Portuguese commerce was, on the contrary, both historic and noble. Since the fifteenth century, the King of Portugal ruled over not only his "conquests", but also the "navigation and commerce of Ethiopia, Arabia, Persia, and India". The monarch himself had become a merchant, or "the grocer king", as one French monarch disparagingly referred to Dom Manuel I (1495-1521). (62) Consequently, for the Portuguese it made no sense to distinguish the causes and effects of commerce and aristocratic civilization because their national character, their Montesquiean "spirit of the laws", an ideal to which both Burke and Silva Lisboa referred to with critical regard, was mercantile and chivalrous at once. (63) In the nineteenth century, therefore, a privileged elite and Dom Joao's "paternal Regency" could sustain the open, commercial empire and also, as Burke had insisted, build on "old foundations". (64)
Portuguese chroniclers of empire, however, had not been so eager to perceive such a harmonious integration of profit and glory in narrating what Richard Helgerson describes as "the voyages of a nation". In the 1810s, it was thus left to Silva Lisboa to realize this imperative in his Memoria dos Beneficios Politicos do Coverno [...] de Dom Joao VI, a recapitulation of the history of the Portuguese empire in which Dom Joao's achievements are enumerated in dialogue with an earlier theorist of empire, Joao de Barros (1496-1570). In his Decadas (1552-1563), Barros had presented a history of Portuguese expansion up to 1505, including Vasco da Gama's voyage to India and Cabral's voyage to Brazil. For Silva Lisboa, the work of "the eminent Historian of the Portuguese Discoveries" provided emblematic links between the Portuguese empire in Asia and the Portuguese empire in America. Read in tandem with the story of Vasco da Gama, the Acclamation, the event that the Memoria commemorated, appeared as the fruition the monarch's American destiny inaugurated in India. The arrival of the prince regent to Rio and the Acclamation, Silva Lisboa claimed, recalled the "ecstatic" greeting that the inhabitants of India offered to "our first Discoverer of the East", an encounter poetically rendered in a passage from Luiz de Camoes' The Lusiads (1572) which Silva Lisboa transcribed: "It is not without reason, no, hidden and dark,/ That you come from the far away Tagus:/ God certainly brings you,/ because He intends/ that You perform his Service [...]." (65) As the use of Camoes also signaled, both encounters were aristocratic achievements of epic proportions. (66)
Silva Lisboa's history of the empire thus recalled the providentialist explanations of the transfer of the court that saw the year 1808 as a divinely-inspired turning point for the monarchy. In Silva Lisboa's case, however, the aim was not to glimpse a sublime post-apocalyptic future, but rather to reclaim the past and the empire's original ethos, to return to the principles that guided the original voyages. According to Silva Lisboa, Dom Joao embodied these principles. His willingness to justify his actions before "the Public and all the Orders of the State" recalled "the Great Albuquerque, founder of our Empire in Asia", whose government, as Barros had written, was one of transparent justice. The prince regent's attempts to maintain Portuguese neutrality, Silva Lisboa also argued, reflected not only his "Character" but also the "Example of his most glorious Predecessors", Dom Henrique and Dom Manuel, who, as Barros established, together with Portuguese colonial governors, excelled at "the ways and arts of establishing peace". (67)
This exaltation of empire as the framework for quiescent material exchange, as Helgerson has observed, can be found as well in one contemporary English reading of Camoes, where the historic Portuguese empire served as a symbol of the dawn of commerce itself. Dom Henrique, wrote William Julius Mickle in the introduction to his 1776 translation of The Lusiads, was "born to set mankind free from the feudal system and to give the whole world every advantage, every light that may possibly be diffused by the intercourse of unlimited commerce". (68) Such a rendering of early European expansion served to suppress the violence of the British empire, a violence directed at Britain's colonial subjects, as well as, to a certain extent, at the Portuguese themselves who, as we shall see below, while "allies" of the crown of England also judged that Britain sought to replace Portugal's "peaceful" pursuit of "unlimited commerce" with their own. Yet, what Helgerson describes as Mickle's "massively overdetermined" reading, reflective of both "two centuries of discourse prompted by trade" and the force of England's eighteenth-century commercial enterprise, would have appealed to Silva Lisboa. Like Mickle, he effaced the violence of empire, argued that the Portuguese monarchy had given trade its limitless dimensions, and appreciated the way in which the Portuguese and British empires converged in commerce. Indeed, bringing Portuguese and British imperial rhetoric to yet another point of intersection, Silva Lisboa cited the early eighteenth-century British poet Thomson's tribute to Dom Henrique. The fifteenth-century navigator had envisioned that "in unlimited Commerce the World embraces". Three centuries later, Silva Lisboa concluded with satisfaction, it was Dom Joao who made that vision a reality. If, however, as Helgerson explains, Mickle's "misreading" of Camoes' epic of conquest as an "epic of commerce" was intended to celebrate the triumph of a mercantilism which Camoes himself sought to suppress in favor of the nobility of empire, Silva Lisboa's "retrospective renaming" of empire entailed bringing both its aristocratic and commercial dimensions to the fore. If Camoes wrote for the king and Mickle wrote for merchants, Silva Lisboa perceived a need to write for both. (69)
To persuade both royalty and merchants of the virtues of free trade, Silva Lisboa then linked the history of Portuguese commerce to an idealized origin. The Portuguese monarchs created an empire that made commerce "limitless", he explained, because they recognized the practice to be "natural". Once again, Silva Lisboa based his assertions on Barros, referring in one passage to his praise for the dynasty of "Ahmed, the Moorish Tartar" who, Barros had claimed, both discerned the natural principle that "men and wealth are what make kingdoms and republics most prosperous" and, accordingly, with "justice and liberality", opened his territory's markets to both foreign goods and currencies. (70) With such a claim Silva Lisboa completed his own massively overdetermined reading of the history of the Portuguese empire. An empire that had been circumscribed by monopoly and justified by mare clausum and the right of navigation defined in positive rather than in natural law became, in Silva Lisboa's Memoria, the champion of the natural practice of free trade. (71)
Such a rewriting of imperial history was, of course, strategic. Establishing that free trade was part of a "natural Politics", historically encountered "when the Economy of Nations was not corrupted by the guile of Monopolists", and that Portuguese expansion itself inaugurated free trade, allowed him to articulate a critique of the old colonial system and monopoly without attacking, as the French Revolutionaries had, "old foundations". He could, as he contended of Dom Joao, ensure that religion remained "unscathed" and maintain "a secure Civil Order, respect for the Dignity of the Crown, a firm National Independence, solid Systems of Public Good, progressive Improvements of Society". From this claim it followed that open ports did not undermine either the old regime or the empire, but rather restored the original and "natural" framework of Portuguese expansion in the place of what the empire had become only subsequently: a closed "colonial system". "Good reason", Silva Lisboa wrote, revealed that "the Economy of the State should not disturb the Order of the Ruler of Society, and the natural course of things", an order which he defined, in turn, by citing Barros: "each one reaps from the earth that which he has sown". "The Colonial System", he went on to explain, "had this intrinsic defect", whereby one group of people were, through "an indirect or direct System of force", prevented from "working" and "developing their territorial and mental resources for the progress of industry and wealth". Such a system, in other words, prevented the pursuit of Smithian self-interest. That the Portuguese courtiers arriving at Rio did not encounter opulence, Silva Lisboa concluded, implicitly comparing the wealthy sixteenth-century empire and the decadence that followed, proved that Adam Smith was right when he argued that for both the metropoles and their colonies free trade was better that monopoly. (72)
In bringing imperial history to the nineteenth-century, Silva Lisboa also completed his final move in writing monopoly out of the old regime: displacing it to the old regime's enemy. France, he wrote in an earlier pamphlet, where the "first luminaries of orthodox Political Economy, Fenelon and Montesquieu, wrote of the advantages of free trade", had been betrayed by the "Monsters" of Revolution, who attacked civilization and debased commerce with their "barbaric physiocratic system". Napoleon's attempt to blockade British commerce as well revealed a hatred of "legitimate commerce" and of those who defended it: the Portuguese and the English, "followers of the Tyrians and Phoenicians". (73) However, the transfer of the court, he argued, evoking both the Bible and The Wealth of Nations, rectified these errors. It accelerated "the development of a Plan" in which, "with an Invisible Hand, Providence prepared the reestablishment of an order that was at once Civil and Cosmological". Brazil's open ports thus were absorbed into a discourse of imperial unity in which the Portuguese political old regime was hegemonic. The "Liberation of Commerce" became synonymous with the "Restoration of Monarchy" and sixteenth-century imperial glory. (74)
Imperial power based on the ideal of free trade thus sustained the New World monarchy in the 1810s. In the first years of the following decade, however, it became its undoing. For in Portugal the crown had failed to convince its vassals of the promise of a new American future and instead left the opening of Brazil's ports to be read as signs of the former metropolis's new "colonial" status. There a growing movement to reverse this trend toward "national decadence" focused on the structure of the empire represented in the United Kingdom and commercial exchange and on the nature of sovereignty itself. (75) The spread of this movement from Portugal to Brazil would shape the end of the Luso-Brazilian Empire.
Seton Hall University
(1) An extended version of this article first appeared in Kirsten Schultz, Tropical Versailles: Empire, Monarchy, and the Portuguese Royal Court in Rio de Janeiro, 1808-1821 (New York: Routledge, 2001), 189-233.
(2) Jose Honorio Rodrigues, Independencia: revolucao e contra-revolucao, vol. 1 (Rio de Janeiro: Francisco Alves, [1975-76]), 7.
(3) "A Carta de Lei," 16 December 1815, ([Rio de Janeiro]: Impressao Regia, ).
(4) "Carta de Lei," 1815; Heliodoro Jacinto de Araujo Carneiro to Tomas Antonio Vila Nova Portugal, [London], March 3, 1818, Arquivo Historico Itamaraty (Rio de Janeiro) Lata 180, Maco 1; Jose da Silva Lisboa, Memoria dos beneficios politicos do governo de El-Rey Nosso Senhor D. Joao VI (Rio de Janeiro: Impressao Regia, 1818), 68, 114 (emphasis in original). On the history of the royal title see Janet Ladner, "John VI of Portugal: Contemporary of Napoleon and Wellington," in Consortium on Revolutionary Europe, Proceedings 20 (1990): 869-892.
(5) Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 115.
(6) Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 69, 116.
(7) Romualdo Antonio de Seixas, Sermao de Accao de Gracas que no Dia 13 de Maio Celebrou o Senado da Camara desta Capital do Para pela Feliz Acclamacao do Muito Alto, e Poderoso Senhor DJoao VI [...] (Rio de Janeiro: Impressao Regia, 1818), 14.
(8) Jose Anselmo Correa Henriques to Paulo Fernandes Viana [Rio de Janeiro's Police Intendant], Lisbon, December 16, 1814, in Dom Joao VI e o Imperio no Brasil, a Independencia e a Missao do Rio Maior, ed. Marcos Carneiro de Mendonca (Rio de Janeiro: Biblioteca Reprografica Xerox, 1984), 276.
(9) Roderick Barman, Brazil, The Forging of a Nation (1798-1852) (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1988), 44-45, 53-54.
(10) On the late eighteenth-century crisis of representation see Antoine de Baecque, "The Allegorical Image of France, 1750-1800: A Political Crisis of Representation," Representations 47 (Summer 1994): 111-6; and Ronald Paulson, Representations of Revolution (1789-1820) (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1983).
(11) "Carta de Lei," 13 May, 1816, ([Rio de Janeiro]: Impressao Regia, 1816). Images of a sphere or spheres juxtaposed to the quinas had appeared in Portuguese royal heraldry since the sixteenth century. See Ana Maria Alves, Iconologia do poder real no periodo manuelino, a procura de uma linguagem perdida (Lisbon: Imprensa Nacional, 1985), figures 25-67. The language of the charter and other commentary, however, suggests that by the nineteenth century the royal heraldry was conceived as separate from the sphere, now identified with both Brazil and the city of Rio. See Januario da Cunha Barbosa, Oracao de Accao de Gracas que Celebrando-se na Real Capella do Rio de Janeiro, no dia 7 de Marco de 1818 o Decimo Anniversario da Chegada de Sua Magestade [...] (Rio de Janeiro: Impressao Regia, 1818), 20. The "Sacred Quinas", he wrote, "will be no less formidable appearing above the Sphere of Brazil, than encircled by the Castles of the Algarves."
(12) Commenting on the new coat of arms, Luccock wrote: "In that which was adopted, the Government has been thought, by persons ignorant of Heraldic mysteries, to have displayed a little of its vanity, if not of its designs, and to have given to the people a lesson which they are not slow to comprehend, nor reserved enough to conceal." See John Luccock, Notes on Rio de Janeiro and the southern parts of Brazil; taken during a residence of ten years in that country, from 1808-1818 (London: Samuel Leigh, 1820), 570.
(13) Jose Anselmo Correa Henriques, "Memorial sobre a residencia d'El Rey no Brasil," BNRJ Ms. 1-33,28,11, fols. 3-3v (emphasis in original). On Da Cunha see Schultz, Tropical Versailles, 19-22.
(14) Barbosa, Oracao, 8.
(15) Luiz Goncalves dos Santos, Memorias para servir a Historia do Reino do Brasil (1825) (Belo Horizonte/Sao Paulo: Itatiaia/EDUSP, 1981), 2: 153-6, 165. On the Portuguese tradition of the Acclamation see Maria Eugenia Reis Gomes, Contribuicao para o estudo da festa no antigo regime (Lisbon: Instituto Portugues de Ensino a Distancia, 1985), 37. On ceremonies of the monarchy in nineteenth-century Brazil see Iara Lis Carvalho Souza, Patria Coroada: O Brasil como Corpo Politico Autonomo, 1780-1831 (Sao Paulo: UNESP, 1998), 35; and Maria Eurydice de Barros Ribeiro, Os simbolos do poder. Cerimonias e imagens do Estado monarquico no Brasil (Brasilia: Editora UnB, 1995), 74-88.
(16) See Bernardo Avellino Ferreira [Souza], Relacao dos Festejos, que a Feliz Acclamacao do Muito Alto, Muito Poderoso, e Fidelissimo Senhor D.Joao VI [...] (Rio de Janeiro: Tipografia Real, 1818), 5, 14; Goncalves dos Santos, Memorias t.2, 176-77, 216. See also Jean Baptiste Debret, Viagem Pitoresca e Historica ao Brasil t.3 (Belo Horizonte/Sao Paulo: Itatiaia/EDUSP, 1989), 70-71 and plates 37-39.
(17) See Jose da Silva Lisboa's comments on Diogo Duarte Silva, "Elogio a Sua Magestade e a nacao, que por ocasiao de celebrar-se a pacificacao de Pernambuco recitou no dia 2 de Julho de 1817," 25 February 1818, Arquivo Nacional, Rio de Janeiro, Antiga Secao Historica (hereafter ANRJ ASH), Desembargo do Paco, Caixa 169, Documento 19.
(18) Luiz Antonio da Silva Souza, A Discordia Ajustada, Elogio Dramatico para Manifestacao do Real Busto do Senhor D. Joao VI [...] (Rio de Janeiro: Impressao Regia, 1819).
(19) Antonio Luiz de Brito Aragao Vasconcellos, "Memorias sobre o estabelecimento do Imperio do Brazil, ou novo Imperio Lusitano," Anais da Biblioteca Nacional (Rio de Janeiro), 43-4 (1920-21).
(20) Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 113.
(21) Goncalves dos Santos, Memorias, 2: 151.
(22) Ana Cristina Bartolomeu Araujo, "O 'Reino Unido de Portugal, Brasil e Algarves' 1815-1822," Revista de Historia das Ideias 14 (1992), 250.
(23) Goncalves dos Santos, Memorias, 2: 151.
(24) Silvestre Pinheiro Ferreira, "Memorias Politicas sobre os Abusos Gerais e Modo de os Reformar e Prevenir a Revolucao Popular Redigidas por Ordem do Principe Regente no Rio de Janeiro em 1814 e 1815," in Pinheiro Ferreira, Ideias Politicas (Rio de Janeiro: Editora Documentario, 1976), 20.
(25) Ferreira [Souza], Relacao, 20.
(26) Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 82-3.
(27) Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 83.
(28) Marques das Bellas [Jose Vasconcellos e Souza], [parecer], transcribed in Angelo Pereira, D. Joao VI, principe e rei (Lisbon: Empresa Nacional de Publicidade, 1956), 3: 40; Alan K. Manchester, British Preeminence in Brazil, Its Rise and Decline. A Study in European Expansion (1933) (N.Y.: Octagon, 1964), 70-1; Wanderley Pinho, "A Abertura dos Portos--Cairu," Revista do Instituto Historico e Geografico Brasileiro 243 (April-June 1959), 102-8; "Memoria escripta por seu filho o conselheiro Bento da Silva Lisboa," in Jose da Silva Lisboa, Cairu: Excertos da obra inedita "O Espirito de Cairu" (Rio de Janeiro: Arquivo Nacional, 1958).
(29) "Carta Regia," 28 January 1808. The complete text of royal charter is transcribed in Goncalves dos Santos, Memorias, 1: 171. As Manchester explains, direct commerce with Brazil was initially "subject to importation duties of twenty-four percent ad valorem on drygoods and double the current duty on certain provisions (generos molhados)." Duties on exports remained the same. Only months later, however, duties on Portuguese goods were reduced, imported raw materials were granted exemptions and, in order to favor Portuguese shipping, "coast-wise trade was closed to foreign vessels, and foreign commerce was restricted to the ports of Rio, Bahia, Pernambuco, Maranhao and Para." See Manchester, British Preeminence, 70-74; and Valentim Alexandre, Os sentidos do imperio: questao nacional e questao colonial na crise do antigo regime portugues (Porto: Afrontamento, 1993), 212.
(30) Goncalves dos Santos, Memorias, 1: 347-9; Ferreira [Souza], Relacao, 4.
(31) Goncalves dos Santos, Memorias, 2: 25.
(32) Francisco de Borja Garcao Stoeckler, transcribed in Goncalves dos Santos, Memorias 2: 196-7.
(33) Rodrigo de Souza Coutinho to Prince Regent Dom Joao, 16 August 1809, cited in Maria de Lourdes Viana Lyra, A Utopia do Poderoso Imperio, Portugal e Brasil: Bastidores da Politica, 1798-1822 (Rio de Janeiro: Sette Letras, 1994), 133.
(34) Souza Coutinho to Jose Bonifacio de Andrada e Silva, 26 April 1810, cited in Lyra, Utopia, 142-3; and "Carta de Lei," 1815.
(35) Seixas, Sermao de Accao de Gracas, 14; Goncalves dos Santos, Memorias, 2: 25.
(36) In the 1790s Souza Coutinho referred to Portugal as an "entrepot"; in 1809, Portugal was a "natural storehouse"; in 1811, it was Brazil that played the role of "Commercial Emporium and Entrepot between Europe and Asia (Emporio do Comercio de Entreposto entre a Europa e a Asia)." See Alvara, 4 February 1811, cited in Alexandre, Os sentidos, 243.
(37) The Marques de Fronteira e Alorna referred to Portuguese dissatisfaction with the state of being "a colony of a colony." See his Memorias, cited in Alexandre, Os sentidos, 452. Writing from exile in London the Franco-Portuguese merchant Jacome Ratton also articulated a sense of Portugal's new colonial status and countered that while the potential of the Brazilian economy should be developed, Portugal, and more specifically Lisbon, should remain the center of the imperial economy. See Ratton's article entitled "Pensamentos Patrioticos Imperio Luzo" (1816), published in the Investigador Portuguez, reprinted in "Lettres de Jacques Ratton a Antonio de Araujo de Azevedo, Comte da Barca (1812-1817)," Bulletin des Etudes Portugaises (nouvelle serie) 25 (1964): 219-28. In contrast, Vasconcellos, writing in Brazil, claimed that Brazil "will no longer be a maritime Colony excluded from the commerce of Nations, as until now, but indeed a great Empire, that will come to be the adjudicator of Europe, the arbiter of Asia and the master of Africa." See Vasconcellos, "Memorias," 7.
(38) Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 119. While, as Jose Luis Cardoso explains, between 1792 and 1802 Portuguese, including Souza Coutinho and Vila Nova Portugal, first read and "assimilated" Smith's work, Silva Lisboa was most engaged and most interested in apprehending and endorsing it "as a self-contained doctrinaire vision that accepted no correction or adaptation." See Jose Luis Cardoso, "Economic Thought in Late Eighteenth-Century Portugal: Physiocratic and Smithian Influences," History of Political Economy 22 (2) (1990): 433-41; and Jose Luis Cardoso, O Pensamento economico em Portugal nos finais do seculo XVIII, 1780-1808 (Lisbon: Estampa, 1989), 289-300.
(39) Historians have generally argued that in Brazil liberal ideas were either not well-disseminated or not meaningfully integrated into Brazilian political culture. The evidence for this failure is slavery and authoritarianism. See Sergio Buarque de Holanda, Raizes do Brasil, 21st edition (Rio de Janeiro: Jose Olympio, 1989), 119; Roberto Schwarz, "As ideias fora do lugar," in Roberto Schwarz, Ao vencedor as batatas: forma literaria e processo social nos inicios do romance brasileiro (Sao Paulo: Livraria Duas Cidades, 1977).
(40) Celso Furtado, The Economic Growth of Brazil, A Survey from Colonial to Modern Times, transl. by Ricardo W.de Aguiar and Eric Charles Drysdale (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1965), 101, 109 (emphasis in original). Furtado may have paraphrased Silva Lisboa's Principios de Economia Politica (1804) (Rio de Janeiro: Pongetti, ), 173: "Depois de segura a arrecadacao dos necessarios impostos para a despesa publica, o unico Codigo racionavel de comercio sera: Deixai fazer, deixai passar, deixai comprar, deixai vender (emphasis in original)."
(41) Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 68. Silva Lisboa wrote Principios de Economia Politica to promote the ideas of Adam Smith in the Portuguese-speaking world and, as Cardoso notes, to respond to the critique of Smith advanced by J. J. Rodrigues Brito in his Memorias politicas sobre as verdadeiras bases da grandeza das nacoes, 3 vols. (Lisbon: 1803-5). While Brito did not reject Smith's thought outright, Silva Lisboa charged that he was too influenced by the ideas of the physiocrats which, he argued, had been nullified by Smith. See Cardoso, "Economic Thought," 436; and Cardoso, Pensamento, 281-300. Also in 1804, to further disseminate his understanding of commerce, Silva Lisboa published Principios de Direito Mercantil e Leis de Marinha para uso da mocidade portuguesa, destinada ao commercio [...], republished in Lisbon in 1815 by the Royal Press. Here he declared that his audience was not men of letters who would consult the original texts that also contained these principles but rather, as he indicated in the title, "young Portuguese" engaged in commerce.
(42) Compendio da Obra da Riqueza das Nacoes de Adam Smith Traduzida do Original Inglez, por Bento da Silva Lisboa (Rio de Janeiro: Impressao Regia, 1811), x. Two additional volumes were published in 1812. While the Portuguese edition appeared later than most translations (German, 1776; French and Italian, 1779; Spanish 1794), its appearance was timely for reasons I will address below.
(43) J. G. A. Pocock, "The Political Economy of Burke's Analysis of the French Revolution," in J. G. A. Pocock, Virtue, Commerce, and History, Essays on Political Thought and History, Chiefly in the Eighteenth Century (N.Y.: Cambridge University Press, 1985), 194.
(44) John Stuart Mill, Principles of Political Economy (1848), cited in Christopher Herbert, Culture and Anomie: Ethnographic Imagination in the Nineteenth Century (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1991), 77. An alternative reading of Silva Lisboa's "economic liberalism" as materialistically instrumental, via Furtado, can be found in Alfredo Bosi, Dialetica da colonizacao (Sao Paulo: Companhia das Letras, 1992), 206-7.
(45) Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 145. Silva Lisboa may have been inspired by this aphoristic passage from Montesquieu: "Commerce cures destructive prejudices [...] Commerce has spread knowledge of the mores of all nations everywhere; they have been compared to each other and good things have resulted from this." See Charles de Secondat, Baron de Montesquieu, The Spirit of the Laws (1748) (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1989), 338 (Book 20, Chapter 1).
(46) Silva Lisboa, cited in Cabral, "Vida e Escriptos," in Cairu, 3.
(47) Jose da Silva Lisboa, Observacoes sobre o comercio franco no Brasil (Rio de Janeiro: Impressao Regia, 1808) cited in Cabral, "Vida e Escriptos," in Cairu, 20. It was not only in Portuguese America where visions of a new, and improved, nineteenth-century empire were formed. Before U.S. independence, Anglo elites on both sides of the Atlantic considered ways of enhancing equality and reciprocity in the British imperial economy. In the U.S., however, elites would come to embrace a "republicanized version of the imperial in projecting the prosperity and freedom of their expanding union of states". See Peter S. Onuf, Jefferson's Empire: The Language of American Nationhood (Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 2000), 58. On reform in late eighteenth-century Spain and Britain see also Anthony Pagden, Lords of All the World, Ideologies of Empire in Spain, Britain and France, c. 1500-c. 1800 (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1995).
(48) Pagden, Lords, chap. 7; Jose da Silva Lisboa, Refutacoes das Reclamacoes contra o Commercio Inglez Extrahida de Escriptores Eminentes (Rio de Janeiro: Impressao Regia, 1810), iv: "Montesquieu observou no Espirito das Leis, que onde ha commercio, ha docura de costumes, e onde ha docura de costumes, ha commercio (emphasis in original)."
(49) Anthony Pagden, "The 'Defense of Civilization' in Eighteenth-Century Social Theory," in Pagden, The Uncertainties of Empire (Norfolk, G.B.: Variorum, 1994), 34. Cardoso, in contrast, reads Silva Lisboa's work as promoting the "autonomous economic development of Brazil" rather than the empire above all. See Pensamento, 295.
(50) Buarque de Holanda, Raizes, 53-4; Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 85; and Silva Lisboa, [censorship report on a translation of poem "Oberon"], 16 November 1818, in ANRJ ASH, Desembargo do Paco, Caixa 170, Documento 47.
(51) Silva Lisboa, [censorship report on "Pensees de J. J. Rousseau"], 19 November 1817, ANRJ, ASH, Desembargo do Paco, Caixa 169, Documento 101.
(52) Extractos das Obras Politicas e Economicas de Edmund Burke por Jose da Silva Lisboa, 2 vols. (Rio de Janeiro: Impressao Regia, 1812). The translation was supported initially by Rodrigo de Souza Coutinho, Minister of Foreign Affairs, who died before it was published.
(53) Jose Honorio Rodrigues, Independencia: revolucao e contra-revolucao (Rio de Janeiro: Francisco Alves, [1975-6]), 4: 4.
(54) Civil liberty, in other words, could not be confused with what both Burke and Silva Lisboa viewed as libertinage or with rights conjured up by abstract reason instead of inherited through positive law. See Edmund Burke, Reflections on the Revolution in France (1790) (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1955), 90. On the French Assembly he wrote, "Their liberty is not liberal. Their science is presumptuous ignorance. Their humanity is savage and brutal." On Burke's understanding of social order, and the threats to order posed by the French Revolution, see also Pocock, "Burke and the Ancient Constitution: A Problem in the History of Ideas," in Pocock, Politics, Language and Time Essays in Political Thought and History (N.Y.: Atheneum, 1971); and Uday Singh Mehta, Liberalism and Empire: A Study in Nineteenth-Century British Liberal Thought (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1999), 159-161. As Mehta explains, in Burke's work "political society does not turn exclusively on such individual capacities as reason, will, and the ability to choose, but also on the presence of a certain shared order on the ground."
(55) Burke, Extractos, xv.
(56) Burke, Reflections, 89-90; Pocock, "Burke's Analysis," 199.
(57) Buarque de Holanda, Raizes, 51-3.
(58) Pocock, "Burke's Analysis," 199.
(59) Montesquieu, The Spirit of the Laws, Book 20, Chapter 1.
(60) Pocock, "Burke's Analysis," 210.
(61) Mehta, Liberalism, 138, 172-3. As Mehta argues, the British empire was incompatible with social order as Burke understood it. Like the Jacobins, Mehta explains, the East India Company "disorders the spacial complex that represents the accretion and effects of a long history and the feelings that are attendant on it."
(62) Richard Helgerson, Forms of Nationhood, The Elizabethan Writing of England (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1992), 160; and Sanjay Subrahmanyam, The Portuguese Empire in Asia, 1500-1700. A Political and Economic History (London: Longman, 1993), 47-51. As Subrahmanyam explains, the late fifteenth and early sixteenth-centuries empire were shaped by both "royal mercantilism" and messianism; "those who were so religiously motivated could often be equally the persons in whose breasts the mostly fervent mercantilist spirit resided."
(63) Pocock, "Burke and the Ancient Constitution," 225.
(64) Burke, Reflections, 39.
(65) Silva Lisboa, Memoria, vi-vii, 56n. The citation is from Camoes's Lusiadas, VI, 30 and 31. Elsewhere Silva Lisboa similarly bases his claim that Brasil was a "Promised Land" by citing Dom Henrique via Barros, Decadas I, Book 1, Chapter 2.
(66) Helgerson, Forms of Nationhood, 155-6.
(67) Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 27n, 90-91n. Here he cites Barros, Decadas I, Book 1, Chap. 8, and Decadas IV, Book 8, Chap. 15, respectively.
(68) William Julius Mickle, The Lusiad (1776), cited in Helgerson, Forms of Nationhood, 190. Mickle's translation, advertised as "the poem of every trading nation [...] the epic poem of the birth of commerce", was the second English-language translation of Os Lusiadas and would become the best known. See George Monteiro, The Presence of Camoes: Influences on the Literature of England, America and Southern Africa (Lexington: University of Kentucky Press, 1996).
(69) Helgerson, Forms of Nationhood,189-190; James Thomson (1700-1748), "The Seasons," cited in Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 58-9. As Monteiro notes, Mickle was an employee of the East India Company and he presented the translation to "the Gentlemen of the East India Company" as an "Epic Poem, particularly their own".
(70) Barros, Decadas IV, Book 5, Chap. 3, cited in Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 99-ioon.
(71) See Schultz, Tropical Versailles, chapter i. The classic seventeenth-century defense of the Portuguese empire and mare clausum is Frei Serafim de Freitas, Do Justo Imperio Asiatico dos Portugueses (1625), 2 vols. (Lisbon: Instituto Nacional de Investigacao Cientitica, 1983).
(72) Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 8, 99, 104, 117, 117n-118. Here he cites Barros, Decadas III, Book 3, Chap. 7; and Smith, The Wealth of Nations, Book 4.
(73) Silva Lisboa, Refutacoes, iii-iv; Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 43.
(74) Silva Lisboa, Memoria, 2, 38. Silva Lisboa's articulation of free trade and empire as historically continuous can be contrasted with discussions in Spain, where the need to re-make the empire as commercial, Anthony Pagden argues, was seen as a break with a past of conquest, a "shift in the nation's identity". See Anthony Pagden, "Liberty, Honour, and Comercio Libre."
(75) See Alexandre, Os Sentidos do Imperio.
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|Publication:||Portuguese Studies Review|
|Date:||Jan 1, 2007|
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