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Christopher Columbus

May 5, 2022

Christopher Columbus was an Italian explorer born in Genoa, Italy, in 1451 and was the son of a wool merchant. Christopher’s start on the waters began early during his teenage years when he first got a job on a merchant ship. 

He sailed four voyages, which gave him broad exposure as the merchant job entailed extensive sea travels. However, in 1476 a significant event occurred along the Portuguese coast where pirates attacked Christopher’s ship. 

Although the boat sank, he survived the attack and made his way to Lisbon to study astronomy, mathematics, navigation and cartography.

Christopher’s journey on navigation

His enthusiasm for navigation had him come up with a different idea towards the end of the 15th century when it was challenging to reach Asia from Europe by land. 

The extended route and ambushes from armies made it challenging to travel by land. While Portuguese explorers figured out a way to sail through, Christopher believed that his strategy would shorten the trip. However, his argument was incorrect as the earth’s circumference was not smaller, contrary to his belief.

His encounter with the Spanish monarchs

Later on, Columbus presented his plan to the Spanish monarchs Aragon and Isabella of Castile, who desired fame and wealth just like Christopher did. 

Although he had promised the Spanish monarchs, Christopher did not obtain much from his first voyage. His contract with the Spanish stated that he could keep 10% of whatever riches he got and rule over any lands he would encounter through his journey.


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