Christopher Columbus

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate November 2001

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Christopher Columbus Columbus was an Italian Mariner and navigator. He was widely believed to be the first European to sail across the Atlantic Ocean and successfully land on the continent of America. Columbus or Cristoforo Colombo was born September 1451, in Genoa, Italy. Columbus was the oldest son of Domenico Colombo. He was a small-scale merchant. His mother's name was Susanna Fontanarossa. He also had two younger brothers; Bartholomew and Diego. He had little education. Most things he knew were self-taught. He later learned to read Latin and write Castillian.

Columbus began working at sea early on and made his first voyage to the Aegean Island in 1475. In 1476, he survived a shipwreck off the cape of St. Vincent. He swam ashore. After he went back to Italy, he moved to Lisbon, Portugal. He moved in whit his brother Bartholomew. The both worked as chart makers, but Columbus wanted to continue his career out on the sea.

In 1477k, he sailed to England, Ireland, and Iceland. He also bought sugar in Madeira for a Genoese firm.

In 1479, Columbus married Felipa Perestelo e Moniz, from a noble family. Their son, Diego, was born in 1480. Felipa died in 1485. Columbus later began a relationship with Beatriz Enriqez de Harana. She had his second son, Ferdinand. They never married.

In the mid 1480s, Columbus had become focused on plans of discovery. In 1484, he had asked King John II of Portugal to take his voyage west, but he refused him. A year later, he and his son Diego sought aid of Queen Isabella and her husband. Though they rejected him, he remained hopeful of convincing them. In January of 1492, after being rejected twice, Columbus got the support of Ferdinand and Isabella.

On August 3, 1492, three ships, The...