Christopher Columbus was born in 1451, in Genoa. He lived during some years in the
Madeira island of Porto Santo. He married the daughter of Porto Santo´s captain.
He met several Portuguese navigators that used to sail the West Coast of Africa and he
started believing that it was possible to reach India by the west. He presented that project
to the king of Portugal who didn´t accepted it.
He decided go to Spain to present the same idea to the Spanish kings, Isabel and
Fernando. They also didn´t accept the project because they were involved in the recovery
of the Arab kingdom of Granada. Later, in 1492 Isabel finally agreed to support the
On the 3rd August 1492, three ships under the command of Christopher
Columbus left Spain. On October 12th, they saw land for the first time in
He explored the islands of Haiti and Cuba, believing that he was in the
Orient. In 1493, he returned to Spain.
In 25th November 1493, he returned to the West, to command one Armada
of fourteen caravels and three ships, carrying 1500 people. During this
travel, he discovered four more islands: Guadalupe, Puerto Rico,
Martinique and the Antilles.
He returned to Europe in 1406, leaving behind a group of colonizers in
3rd and 4th Voyages
In 1498, he did his third expedition. During this, he discovered the Trinity
Island and the Coast of Venezuela. He was victim of intrigues and returned
to Spain under arrest in 1500.
His forth travel and last was in 1502. He went to Honduras and Panamá.
When he returned to Europe two years later, he was ignored and died in
1506. He was still convinced that he had been to the Far East.
Christopher Columbus was the first to prove what a lot of people already believed :
that the world was round. He believed that it was possile to travel either to the East or
to the West and return to the starting point.
He was born in a small maritime city in the north of Italy, where he grew among
ships and sailors. In those times, the European trade with the Far East was a growing
activity. But, the know route by land was long and difficult.
Presently we know that the Earth is round, with vast land masses in the Easter and
Western hemispheres. But in Europe until Columbus age, people believed that the
Earth was flat like a dish, and if people sail too far, they would fall from the Earth.
The Kings of Spain benefited greatly from Columbus discoveries. They
invested vast resources exploring and colonizing the recently discovered
territories. For them, Columbus discovered a real “New World”.
Christopher Columbus was himself a sailor and a creator of maps and charts.
When he lived in Portugal, at that time the center of world navigation and
oceanic discoveries, he dedicated himself to copy navigation charts and world
atlas, to help him in his future navigation adventures. He has also very
influenced by Marco Polo travel stories.
Columbus changed the world´s history because he discovered the American
continent, without knowing it, believing he has arrived at the Eastern Indies.