Portuguese-South Africans


Portuguese-South Africans

Portuguese-South Africans ( _pt. luso-sul-africanos) are South Africans of Portuguese ancestry.

History

The Portuguese explored the coasts of South Africa in the late 15th century, and nominally claimed them as their own with the laying of "padrões" (large stone cross inscribed with the coat of arms of Portugal placed there as part of a land claim). Bartolomeu Dias did so in 1486, and Vasco da Gama recorded a sighting of the Cape of Good Hope in 1497, en route to India.

The early 20th century witnessed a trickle of emigrants from Madeira whose numbers greatly increased in the decades following World War II. Madeiran immigrants, who are traditionally associated with horticulture and small commerce, form the largest group within South Africa's Portuguese community.

The largest single event of Portuguese settlement occurred when two of the former Portuguese colonies (Angola and Mozambique) became independent in 1975. While most Portuguese from the two Portuguese-speaking African countries went to Portugal, some entered South Africa. Their entrance made South Africa the home of the largest Portuguese African population, numbering about 1 million.Fact|date=July 2008

Language

Portuguese-South Africans natively speak European Portuguese (many in the Madeiran dialect), while also adopting South African English, which tends to become the first language of second- and third-generation Portuguese-South Africans. Some others also speak Afrikaans.

Religion

Most Portuguese, like other South Africans, are Christians. Most of them are Roman Catholics, although there is a Protestant minority.


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