He was born in 1451 in or near Genoa. He moved to Lisbon around 1476 and, after failing to persuade King Joao II to finance an Atlantic crossing, transferred his quest for patronage to Spain, where King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella gave him a contract to discover the sea route to Asia.
On August 3, 1492, he sailed with a fleet of three ships and 120 men from Palos in southwestern Spain. After stopping for final provisions in the Canary Islands, they sailed for more than a month without sighting land. Finally, on October 12, in Columbus’s words, “something like a white sand cliff gleaming in the moonlight” appeared. This was a small island in the Caribbean. THe date is commemorated every year throughout the Hispanic world. It is called El Dia de la Hispanidad in Spain or Columbus Day in the United States.
Columbus claimed he had reached India; when he returned to the royal court in Spain in 1493, after his first voyage, he took six natives whom he called indios.
He made three other trips, over which he discovered Cuba and Puerto Rico, in which he founded the city of Santo Domingo on the island of Hispaniola (Haiti/Dominican Republic), and explored the coast of the American mainland.
Columbus fell out of favour with the crown and the colonial administrators over the way in which he and his two brothers governed Hispaniola, including claims of torture. They were shipped back to Spain in 1500 in chains, accused of gross mismanagement. He spent six weeks in prison until King Ferdinand ordered his release and agreed to fund his fourth and last voyage.
After his death, Columbus’s body traveled as much as he did during his life. Results of DNA tests in 2004 suggested that he was not buried in Seville’s Santa Maria cathedral but somewhere in the “new world,” possibly the Dominican Republic.
Source: William Chislett, SPAIN, What Everyone Needs to Know. + Google Images
During my stay in Barcelona, I had a chance to see Christopher Columbus two times:
First, on top of a tall monument, facing the port of Barcelona, at the end of Las Ramblas.
And then, I had a chance to meet him in person, on Las Ramblas:
He was very cute!!!
Melanie, my travel companion, wanted a picture with one of the lions at the bottom of his monument:
And this was our adventure with Christopher Columbus in Barcelona!