Capoeira history begins with the first black slaves brought from Africa to work on sugar cane plantations and tobacco in Brazil. These slaves came from different regions and cultures of Africa, most of the Bantu tribe of Africa and the West. Realizes their new condition of forced labor to work forever, some slaves began to flee and even to rebel. Run by the plantation slaves fled to the mountains, where they formed communities of blacks. Here, the mixture of different African cultures formed the basis capoeira. This early period is however unclear and mainly based on assumptions, the first written records of the capoeira appear until around 1770, in police annals.
The African communities in the mountains started to grow, blacks increasingly going more often fromthe mountains to exchange products and especially to attack plantations and other slave issue.
Taking advantage of the Dutch attack on Brazil, which then (1630) was a Portuguese colony, slaves, blacks in the mountains revolted and fled from the plantations.
The Dutch won the war and realizes that important loss was fleeing slaves on plantations, have organized several expeditions to capture blacks in the mountains. Although in these expeditions were sent experienced soldiers , they encountered unexpected resistance from the Africans, who led the guerrilla war, characterized by rapid and unexpected attacks that caused casualties to the Dutch. Capoeira was the key element in these attacks and became the main weapon and symbol of freedom for blacks.
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Blacks caught in these expeditions were taken back to the plantations. Herethey learned capoeira tothe other slaves. Sunday – the rest day, was the time when slaves had time to practice capoeira. On the plantation practice of capoeira was changed. They added dance, music and rituals to hide the fact that slaves were practicing a deadly martial art.
These workouts have the slaves ready for riots that followed, in Twenty years took place eleven major uprisings that culminated in the abolition of slavery in 1888.
Many blacks freed by not having to work on plantations, were held on criminal gangs, and the luckiest of them, because of the capoeira knowledge, were employed as bodyguards of politicians and businessmen. Fearing the threat to political stability and social order it represented capoeira, the government banned the practice, any practitioner of capoeira is shown expatriate. After a period of persecution against practitioners of capoeira, public perception of it changed after the war with Paraguay, fall capoeira practitioners were noted on the front, becoming national heroes.
Until the abolition of alcohol prohibition on capoeira in 1920, continued its practice disguised as a “folk dance. Through the efforts of practitioners, the tradition was kept alive, and capoeira was more readily accepted in the form of folk art.
In 1937, Mestre Bimba, one of the most important masters of capoeira, received the invitation from the president to make a demostratie in the capital. The demonstration was very appreciated and when he returned home, with the permission of the governor, opened the first school of capoeira in Brazil. This was the first step in the evolution of modern capoeira. Afew years later was declared a national sport in Brazil.
Today, capoeira has spread all over the world, earning increasingly more practical through its beauty and uniqueness. In Brazil it is considered part of the culture, as practiced in schools, universities, clubs and military academies.
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