Pumpkins for Missionaries

Bartolomeo_Bimbi_-_The_Pumpkin_-_WGA02200Bartolomeo Bimbi, Pumpkins, 1711
Source: Wikimedia Commons / public domain

Travel Provisions for the Journey to India

The Theatine Bartolomeo Ferro (c. 1633- 1706) published his Istoria delle Missioni de’ Chierici Regolari, Teatini in two thick volumes in 1704 and 1705.  After many chapters recounting the adventures and hardships of the order during their mission work in Asia, he concluded the final volume with a suggested list of supplies to pack for the voyage to India. When the priests departed from Lisbon they should make sure to take things like utensils for celebrating mass, and also ample non-perishable foodstuffs such as wine and cheese.  In a special mention he recommends pumpkins because they “last for the whole voyage…and make the best soup there can be.”

“Portino molte Zucche di Lisbona, perche durano per tutto il viaggio, e per il viaggio dell’Indie è la miglior minestra, che possa darsi”

– Bartolomeo Ferro, Istoria delle Missioni de’ Chierici Regolari, Teatini, vol. 2 (Rome: Gio. Francesco Buagni, 1705): 672.

Happy Halloween, and remember to pack a few pumpkins wherever you’re going.