In accordance with our meta agreement to have topic challenges and a later meta agreement to have topic challenges lasting for two months and overlapping by one month, it is time to announce the February–March 2021 topic challenge.

Based on the number of votes in the proposals thread (+6), the second topic challenge of 2021 will be the Portuguese epic poem

Os Lusíadas (The Lusiads).

What's a topic challenge?

See the meta posts linked above, and also this main meta post. In short, during February–March 2021 we should all try to read Os Lusíadas.

Participation is not obligatory in any sense, but those who participate will be forever remembered in the annals of our history. And of course it goes without saying that questions about other works are more than welcome during those months too; they just won't count as part of this topic challenge.

How can I take part?

By getting hold of Os Lusíadas, in any language you like, and asking good questions about it. These questions should be tagged with and and , and other tags if appropriate. We'll keep a list of all such questions in an answer to this meta post.

Below is Tsundoku's original presentation of this topic challenge, which contains some useful links:

Os Lusíadas by Luís Vaz de Camões is one great classics of Portuguese literature. This epic poem, first published in 1572, "celebrates the discovery of a sea route to India by the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama (1469–1524)" (Wikipedia).

The text can be easily found online, for example:

For translations available in print, see for example

  • The Lusiads. Translated by William Atkinson. Penguin, 1952. (256 pages). This is a prose translation with a 30-page introduction.
  • The Lusiads. Translated by Landeg White. Oxford University Press, 1997. (288 pages). This is a verse translation with a 12-page introduction, a select bibliography, maps and (at the back of the book) explanatory notes.

What's next?

  • The December 2020 - January 2021 topic challenge, literary theory, is still ongoing. The January-February 2021 one, Theodor Fontane, is starting imminently.
  • Vote here for the next topic challenge, or propose your own in an answer there!

1 Answer 1


List of all questions posted in this topic challenge

  1. Since when do the Portuguese regard The Lusiads as their national epic? by Tsundoku, 11.03.2021 (6 votes, 0 answers; appr. 33 view).
  2. Which passages in Manuel de Faria e Sousa's commentary on The Lusiads caused his temporary incarceration by the Inquisition? by Tsundoku, 16.03.2021 (3 votes, 1 verbose answer, appr. 43 views).
  3. Where is St. Lawrence island in Africa, mentioned in Os Lusíadas by b_jonas, 18.03.2021 (6 votes, 1 verbose answer, appr. 192 views; HNQ).
  4. What's the significance of the "Invocation to the muses of the Tagus"? by bobble, 20.3.2021 (4 votes, 1 verbose answer, appr. 34 views).
  5. What is meant by "Nysa" in the Lusiads? by Rand al'Thor, 27.3.2021 (3 votes, 2 answers, appr. 72 views, HNQ).
  6. Chilli peppers in fifteenth-century India? by verbose, 28.3.2021 (15 votes, 1 answer (self-answered), appr. 2000 views, HNQ).
  7. On what sources did Camões base his Os Lusíadas? by Rand al'Thor, 28.3.2021 (3 votes, 1 verbose answer, appr. 35 views).
  8. How does ancient Greek polytheism fit with Christianity in The Lusiads? by Rand al'Thor, 31.3.2021 (2 votes, 0 answers, appr. 16 views).

The highest-voted of these is Chilli peppers in fifteenth-century India?, with a score of 15 at the end of March.

The most viewed is Chilli peppers in fifteenth-century India?, with approximately 2000 views during the months of February and March.

Two questions became hot network questions. Each of the six questions that received an answer received one written by verbose.

  • 2
    Feel free to drop by Falatório with any informal queries you might have about portuguese :) that you feel don't fit in the main site, portuguese.SE.
    – ANeves
    Mar 26, 2021 at 18:52

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