Nossa Senhora de Assunção Fort
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Nossa Senhora de Assunção Fort

The English translation of Fortaleza is fort, and the particular fort that the city's name refers to is Nossa Senhora de Assunção, built by the Dutch in 1649 as Fort Schoonenborch. The city dates its founding to the establishment of the seafront fortifications, which are today a protected landmark. Originally star-shaped, it is still an enormous if somewhat diminished structure today, and it continues to house an army regiment. After admiring the fortifications, visitors should take time to look at the old cannons on the grounds and stop at the small museum dedicated to the 19th-century general Antônio de Sampaio.

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