Informative Essay Sample on Christopher Columbus

Posted on June 26, 2009

Christopher Columbus was born in 1451 at Genoa. Genoa was a seaport that was on the Ligurian sea. His name was Cristoforo Colombo and that was translated into English as Christopher Columbus. Christopher Columbus had two brothers, which he was older than both. Christopher Columbus had little schooling just like most of the people during that age. Genoa was a busy seaport and Christopher Columbus learned much from the sailors. Christopher Columbus’s father was a poor weaver. Christopher Columbus worked with his father for a while, but his heart was set on sailing. (“Christopher Columbus.” The book of knowledge, 2000.)

As soon as Christopher Columbus possibly could he went to sea. Christopher Columbus started with short fishing trips and worked his way up to longer trips with merchants that traded along the coast of the Mediterranean Sea. Christopher Columbus was intrigued by map making and geography, which he studied between trips. In Christopher Columbus’s twenties he made his first trip out of the Mediterranean Sea into the Atlantic Ocean. During that trip Christopher Columbus’s boat was attacked and was set on fire. The only way out was to swim; Christopher Columbus swam six miles back to shore by clinging to wreckage. (“Christopher Columbus.” The book of knowledge, 2000.)

In 1476 Christopher Columbus move to Portugal. In Portugal he met Felipa Perestrello e Moniz. Felipa Perestrello e Moniz was the daughter of a respected, but relatively poor family. Shortly after they met they were married. (“Christopher Columbus.” The book of knowledge, 2000.) In 1480 Felipa Perestrello e Moniz gave birth to Christopher’s first son whom they named Diego. (“Christopher Columbus.” A&E Television Networks.)

The only way to trade with the east during this time was by caravan. The caravans would transport goods to the east by traveling over mountains and through deserts. The journeys were long and difficult. Christopher Columbus was determined to change this by sailing west to get to the east. Christopher was not trying to prove that the earth was round, because that was already a known fact. Christopher Columbus also was not trying to discover a new world, he was simply trying to get to China, India, or Japan by sailing westward. Christopher Columbus had a hard time getting support because people were scared. Columbus tried for 10 years to get a European ruler to support his plan. Finally, in 1492 King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella supported his plan. “King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella promised to make him governor of any new lands and offered him ten percent of all the wealth he would bring to Spain.” (“Christopher Columbus.” The book of knowledge, 2000.)

The king and queen prepared three ships the Niсa, the Pinta, and the Santa Marнa for Columbus. August 3rd, 1492 Christopher Columbus and his eighty-eight volunteers left the port of Palos looking for China, India, and Japan. The weeks went by slow and there was some unrest starting to grow among the crew. Christopher Columbus told the crew they traveled less miles than they actually did to prevent further chaos among the crew. The crew’s on all three ships started to beg to Christopher Columbus to get him to turn back. Then on October 12th, 1492 they found land. When Christopher Columbus got on the land he kissed the ground and thanked god. Christopher Columbus named that land San Salvador, which means “Holy Savior.” Christopher Columbus spent two days at San Salvador, which is now part of the Bahamas. When they were there they met men and women that were very friendly and they exchanged gifts with them. Christopher Columbus called these people “Indians” thinking that he was in India. After that Christopher Columbus spent the next ten weeks searching the islands for the rich cities of Asia. The islands he explored were Cuba and Haiti. Christopher Columbus brought back goods that he found and even some Indians in hope that they would let him return. (Millar, Heater. Spain in the age of exploration. New York: Marshall Cavendish Corporation, 1999.)

Soon after Christopher Columbus returned to Spain, the Spanish realized that Christopher Columbus never made it to Asia and instead that he instead stumbled across the Americas. This discovery would end up bringing Spain large amounts of gold, silver, and emeralds, “The wealth to fuel a nation.” (Millar, Heater. Spain in the age of exploration. New York: Marshall Cavendish Corporation, 1999.) “Columbus marked the beginning of an age of exploration and conquest that would last two centuries and would make Spain, for a time, the richest and most powerful nation on earth.” (Millar, Heater. Spain in the age of exploration. New York: Marshall Cavendish Corporation, 1999.)

Between 1493 and 1504 Christopher Columbus made three more trips to the Americas looking for the great cities of Asia. The first of these trips began on September 25th, 1493, with seventeen ships and 1,300 men. Christopher Columbus got everything he needed for this trip. He had all sorts of animals and supplies to assist the settlement formed in 1492. When they got there they discovered that the settlement was desecrated. So, they started a new settlement called Isabella. Columbus did some exploring and then returned to Spain. The king and queen wanted money and riches so they sent Columbus back again to find them. He left on May 30th, 1498 with six ships. Columbus went farther than he had before and he ended up on the coast of South America. Columbus and his crew found some gold and then returned to Spain. After Columbus got to Spain he set out on his final journey. This time looking for gold, silver, precious stones, spices, and riches. They left on May 9th, 1502 with four ships and 150 men. During this trip Columbus was the age of fifty. Columbus had bad eyesight and was ill, but the seamen still remained loyal to him and were honored to sail with him. Columbus and his crew got caught up in a few storms and ended up ship wrecked. When Columbus and his crew where finally rescued they returned to Spain. (“Christopher Columbus.” Microsoft Encarta.)

Columbus was very ill by the time he got back to Spain. Columbus had eaten years of bad food and had developed rheumatism and a fever. Columbus’s last words were “Into thy hands, O Lord, I commit my spirit.” Christopher Columbus died in Spain in 1506. Hundreds of years have past and Christopher Columbus’s great navigational skills have never been forgotten. The routes he used to get to the America’s and back are still being used today. Columbus opened up a new doorway for exploration and trade. (“Christopher Columbus.” Microsoft Encarta.)

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