Class Year


Document Type



Hans Staden’s Warhaftige Historia detailed his experience as a captive to the Tupinambá in Brazil in the 1550s. The text serves as a gateway into the minds of Europeans in Brazil during this time period. After spending years working for the Catholic Portuguese in Brazil and nine months as a captive, native Hessians viewed Staden as a “foreigner” upon his return to his homeland. Staden used his text as a way to confirm his identity as a staunch Protestant and a devoted Hessian through a dedication to Prince Philipp and numerous allusions to his faith. In addition to solidifying his identity as a Protestant, Warhaftige Historia also allowed Staden to reaffirm his German identity after spending so many years in Brazil. Warhaftige Historia exhibited the tension between French and Portuguese colonizers, who Staden distanced himself from in order to verify his identity as a loyal Hessian. Warhaftige Historia, a highly political and propagandistic piece, served the purpose of affirming Staden’s loyalty to Hessian Prince Philipp and the Protestant faith after spending many years outside of his native land.

Included in

History Commons