For those wondering whether Magellan carried salt as one of his provisions for his round-the-world voyage (1517 – 1521) . . .
The list of equipment shows utensils of iron and copper, and the provisions included seemingly ample quantities of wine, olive oil, vinegar, beans, lentils, garlic, flour, rice, cheese, honey, sugar, anchovies, sardines, salt cod, salt beef, and salt pork.
– Armada de Molucca, “The Great Explorers”, Samuel Eliot Morison
. . . the answer is, “Yes, but integrated into cod, beef, pork, anchovies, and sardines.” Me, I might have traded some of that salted cod for more wine, since a vanishingly small amount of the former is a sufficiency for me, and what constitutes an ample amount of the latter is in the mouth of the drinker.
For those wondering whether it really *is* good to be the king (or, even, the captain general) . . .
One curious item is 35 boxes of carne de membrillo — quince jelly or preserve — for Trinidad [Ed’s note: Magellan’s flag ship], whilst other vessels rated but four boxes each.
. . . the answer is, “Yes. You don’t get scurvy whilst circumnavigating the globe. And you have something to hide the taste of salt cod.”
For those wondering whether there is any detail that is inherently too insignificant to be recorded for posterity and, then, pored over by historians . . .
The flagship, too, carried twice as many raisins as her consorts.
. . . the answer is, “No. After all, we know how many raisins were on all the ships in Magellan’s fleet, 500 years ago.”
Now, I don’t suppose that anyone 500 years from now will know or care how many raisins I now have in my pantry. Or boxes (full of jars?) of quince jelly, for that matter. But, given Google’s ominous reach and Big Data’s drive to predict behaviour for profit, who knows what details of my life might even now be being recorded for posterity? Not, I fear, the ones I might want recorded.
Maybe it’s better to just ‘fess up now. The raisin products in my pantry are from the grape part of the lifecycle, and it is just barely possible that I have twice as much stock as the other houses on this block.