The Brazil Tablet: The Mysteries of Ancient Malian Explorers

In the year 1310, a daring group of Malian explorers, led by the illustrious Mansa Abubakari, embarked on a remarkable journey across the vast Atlantic Ocean. Their expedition would go down in history as one of the most enigmatic and intriguing tales of early transatlantic exploration. Among the many mysteries left behind by these intrepid seafarers is the Brazil Tablet, an artifact that has captivated the imaginations of historians and archaeologists for centuries. In this article, we will delve deep into the heart of the Brazilian jungle to uncover the secrets of the Brazil Tablet and explore the compelling evidence that suggests the presence of a Malian colony in Brazil.

The Enigmatic Brazil Tablet

Abu Bakr riding in his ships. ( Source )

At the center of this historical enigma stands the “Brazil Tablet,” a discovery made by Colonel P.H. Fawcett in an uncharted region near the Culuene River. What makes this tablet so astonishing is its unmistakable “African pigment” and distinctive features. The figure depicted on the Brazil Tablet is believed to be an elite member of the Malian colony in Brazil. Several key pieces of evidence point towards a Manding origin for this intriguing artifact. These include the presence of a regal crown adorning the figure, Manding inscriptions meticulously etched across the chest and feet, and the resemblance of the personage’s attire to the Manding-style military uniform described in historical accounts.

The Brazil Tablet, measuring ten inches (25.4 cm) in height, was initially introduced to the world by Colonel Percy H. Fawcett, a renowned explorer of Brazil. Interestingly, Fawcett obtained this black basalt statuette from none other than Sir H. Rider Haggard, the famous author of “King Solomon’s Mines” (1885). Fawcett was convinced that the figure was a relic from the ancient cities that Portuguese explorers had claimed to discover in Brazil. His belief was reinforced by the fact that 14 of the 24 characters on the statuette bore striking similarities to pre-Columbian Brazilian pottery and inscriptions found by Portuguese banderistas at ancient cities along the Amazon River.

Unraveling the Inscriptions

The Brazil Tablet
The Brazil Tablet. ( Source )

Further intrigue surrounds the inscriptions on the Brazil Tablet. Many of these inscriptions, similar to those discovered in ancient Brazil, were meticulously documented by Harold T. Wilkins in his work “Mysteries of Ancient South America.” Notably, these inscriptions can also be found in Piracicaba, Brazil, and other areas suitable for settlement.

One of the most significant breakthroughs in deciphering these inscriptions came in 1977 when Dr. Winters published a decipherment detailing the burial place and cause of death of a Mansa or Mande King. It appears that the Mansa on the Brazil Tablet was named Be, and he was buried in a hemispherical tomb built near a cave. This style of tomb construction mirrors the traditional Mausoleums for Mande kings, reminiscent of the tomb of Askia, built in the form of pyramids.

Similarities to Other Malian Settlements

The Brazil Tablet
Askia’s Tomb. ( Source )

The evidence doesn’t stop at the Brazil Tablet alone. It extends to the architecture and structures found in Brazil. The Malians in South America seemed to favor building their homes on top of mounds, much like their counterparts in West Africa. These mounds, known as “sambuquis,” have yielded artifacts with radiocarbon dates tracing back to prehistory. Many of these mounds also exhibit cultural similarities to the civilizations of Venezuela, aligning with the timeframe of the Malian voyages.

In conclusion, the Brazil Tablet and the ancient tombs scattered across Brazil provide compelling evidence that Malians may have indeed landed on the shores of Brazil centuries ago. Notably, the elite figure on the Brazil Tablet is adorned in a uniform associated with Malian marines, reinforcing the notion of a Malian presence in Brazil. The discovery of a tomb dedicated to Pe may very well be linked to the individual depicted on the Brazil Tablet, further solidifying the historic significance of this find.

Hypothesizing the Journey

The Brazil Tablet
Detail of Cromlech of Calcoene, a megalithic stone structure located in Brazil. ( Source )

One can’t help but wonder about the journey undertaken by Abubakari and his expeditionary force. It’s plausible that they departed from the city of Niani, traversed the Niger River by canoe, and made their way to the Gulf of Guinea. From there, the explorers likely harnessed the power of the Guinea Current, which carried them out into the vast Atlantic Ocean. Their voyage might have intersected with the South Equatorial Current, eventually guiding the Mali explorers to the shores of Brazil.

Could the Brazil Tablet be a forgery or a hoax?

While skepticism is natural, the Brazil Tablet’s authenticity has been scrutinized by experts over the years. Its unique features, inscriptions, and resemblance to other historical artifacts lend credibility to its origins.

Are there ongoing archaeological excavations in the Brazilian jungle related to this discovery?

Yes, numerous archaeological expeditions have been launched to explore the region where the Brazil Tablet was found. These efforts aim to uncover more evidence of a potential Malian colony.

What is the significance of the Manding origin of the Brazil Tablet?

The Manding origin suggests a connection between the Malian Empire and the Brazilian jungle, raising questions about early transatlantic exploration and trade routes.

Has DNA analysis been conducted on the remains found in the hemispherical tombs in Brazil?

DNA analysis is a challenging endeavor in such remote locations, but it remains a topic of interest for future research.

What impact could the discovery of a Malian colony in Brazil have on our understanding of history?

If confirmed, this discovery could reshape our understanding of early transatlantic voyages and the interconnectedness of ancient civilizations.

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