top of page

Return to Ethiopia

Historical Perspectives

Brief Summary of the past

The Eighteenth Century


Return to Ethiopia

Even before Abuna Tobia began his journey back to Ethiopia at Suez on 26th July 1789, tensions were mounting between himself and Fr. Michelangelo. As to who was leading whom the letter of the Propagation of the Faith, dated 20th May 1789, should have been solved when it said: "It is appropriate that you (Fr.Michaelangelo) may accompany him (Abuna Tobia) as far as Moha; even further if necessary." But that seems to have fallen on deaf ears.

The two Ethiopians disembarked at Massawa in October 1789, while Fr. Michelangelo only sailed from Moha in December 1789. Fr. Michelangelo stayed around Adi Gwadad until July 1790 before returning to Moha, but Abuna Tobia and his companion headed for Adwa. Towards the end of 1790 Fr Michelangelo sent a dispatch to the Propagation of the Faith that included a letter, dated 26th May 1790, from Emperor Hezekiah (1789 - 1794) requesting military assistance. Fr. Michelangelo received two replies, respectively dated 21st and 24th September 1791, expressing astonishment that he should become involved in such matters, and dismissing his request as "frivolous and wildly fanciful."

bottom of page