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the most enterprising navigators in the world, had gone no further than the A-zores' on the west, and the equator on the south. It was reserved for the great genius of Christopher Columbus, amid discouragements of every kind, to add a new continent to the civilized world.
62. Columbus was born at Genoa (jen'-o-a] about 1435. His father was a wool-comber, but gave his son advantages of education, particularly in geography, mathematics, and astronomy, for which he early displayed a decided taste. At fourteen, he went to sea. A few years later, in the service of a kinsman who commanded a small Genoese squadron, he took part in an engagement with some Venetian (ve-ne-shan] vessels off the coast of Portugal. His ship caught fire, and Columbus, leaping into the waves, barely saved his life by swimming ashore. The fame that Portugal had won by her maritime enterprise attracted him to Lisbon [liz'-bon]; and there he married the daughter of an eminent navigator, whose charts and journals awakened within him an ardent thirst for discovery. From this time to 1477, we find him engaged in various voyages to Madeira (ma-de'-ra], the Cana'-ries, the Azores, the coast of Guinea, and Iceland.
63. The geographical researches of Columbus had convinced him that the earth was round, and that land would be found in the west to counterbalance the eastern continent. The maps of the day gave little information respecting the extent of Asia; and Columbus imagined that it stretched much farther east than it really did, or that large islands lined its coast, but a few hundred leagues west of Europe. Many circumstances confirmed him in this belief. Pieces of wood strangely carved had been picked up by those who had ventured into the unknown ocean. Trees torn up by the roots were often driven by west winds on the Azores; and upon one island of this group had been
the discovery of America reserved ? 62. Where and when was Columbus born ? For what sciences did he early display a taste ? At fourteen, what did he do? Some years later, what befell him? Where did he then go? Whom did he marry ? From this time to 1477, in what was he engaged ? 63. Of what was Columbus convinced by his researches ? What is said of the maps of that day? What did Columbus imagine respecting Asia ? What confirmed him in this be
HIS APPLICATIONS FOR AID.
washed the bodies of two men, totally different in appearance from the natives of Europe and Africa.
64. Firm in his opinion, Columbus next sought the means of testing its truth. He must have men and ships. His first proposals, made to the senate of his native city, were rejected. His next application was to John II., of Portugal; who, after drawing out his plans, treacherously sent a vessel on the proposed course under another commander, but happily gained nothing by his baseness. Disgusted with this treatment, Columbus sent his brother Bartholomew to Henry VII., of England. Bartholomew was captured by pirates, and it was years before he reached London. The English monarch listened to him with favor, and would probably have become the patron of Columbus had he not previously found one in another quarter.
65. After his disappointment in Portugal, 1484, Columbus went to Spain. Destitute and friendless, he obtained an humble living for himself and his son Diego [de-ā'-go] by making charts and maps. At last he succeeded in procuring an interview with Ferdinand, king of Ar-a-gon. This cautious monarch, after listening to his projects, submitted them to the learned men of the University of Sal-a-man'-ca, by whom they were once more condemned.
66. After years of trial, Columbus finally obtained an interview with Isabella, the wife of Ferdinand and queen of Castile [cas-teel'] and Le'-on. To enable him to appear at court, she sent him a small sum of money (about $70), with which he procured a mule and suitable clothing. The queen, though moved by his arguments, was dissuaded from furnishing the required aid. More disheartened than ever, Columbus was on the point of abandoning Spain, when
lief? 64. To test this opinion, what did he need ? To whom were his first proposals made ? With what success ? To whom did he next apply? What was the result? To whom did he then send his brother? What happened to Bartholomew ? 65. After his disappointment in Portugal, where did Columbus go ? How did he support himself? With whom did he finally obtain an interview ? What was the result? 66. After years of trial, who manifested an interest in the plans of Columbus? How was he enabled to appear at court? What was the result of this interview? What prevented Columbus from abandoning Spain ? What dignity was conferred on him ? What difficulty was experienced ? Name
at last, by the advice of wiser counsellors, Isabella determined to embark in the enterprise, even if she had to pledge her jewels to raise the necessary funds. Columbus was commissioned as High Admiral and Viceroy of all the countries he might discover, and hastened to Palos (pah'-los] to fit out the expedition.
There was great difficulty in finding sailors for such a voyage; but, with the aid of the queen, three vessels and ninety men were obtained. The ships were very small, none of them being over 100 tons burden. The Santa Maria [mare'-a), which bore the flag of Columbus, was the only one that had a deck. Two brothers by the name of Pin'-zon commanded the Pin'-ta and the Nina [ne'-na). Provisions were laid in for a year. The whole expense of the outfit was only £4,000.
67. The little fleet sailed from Palos, Aug. 3d, 1492; and, after stopping at the Canaries to refit and take in fresh water, stood boldly out into the ocean. When the land faded from their sight, a full sense of the dangers they were to en
and describe the ships. Who commanded the Pinta and the Nina ? What was the expense of the outfit? 67. Whence and when did the fleet sail ? Give an ac.
HIS LABORS CROWNED WITH SUCCESS.
counter seized on the sailors; and their fears gradually increased, till, on the expiration of twenty days without any signs of land, they began to talk of throwing their commander overboard and returning home. The variation of the compass had not yet been discovered, and their alarm was therefore greatly heightened when they observed that the magnetic needle no longer pointed directly north. It was a trying hour for Columbus, but his great mind was equal to the crisis. Explaining the variation of the compass in a manner satisfactory to his followers though not to himself, he used every means to induce them to prosecute the voyage, now picturing to their minds the riches they would obtain, and now threatening them with the anger of their sovereign. At length both officers and men insisted on returning, and Columbus was obliged to promise that, unless land appeared within three days, he would comply with their demand. The shallowness of the water, the numerous birds in the air, the grass and weeds floating by, a branch that was picked up with berries still fresh upon it, all made him sure that he could give this promise with safety.
68. On the evening of October 11th, the sails were furled, and a close watch was kept. At ten o'clock, a moving light was discerned in the distance by Columbus and several others. At two in the morning, a shout from the Pinta announced the discovery of land. Dawn displayed to the overjoyed adventurers a scene of strange beauty. The land was covered with forests, and gay with the foliage and flowers of a tropical clime. The natives thronged from the woods to gaze at the ships, which with their white sails they regarded as huge birds hovering over the sea.
69. Columbus was the first to touch the newly discovered shore. Richly attired and with drawn sword, he landed. Kneeling on the sand, he kissed the earth, and returned thanks to God. When he had taken formal possession of
count of the voyage. What was Columbus at last obliged to promise ? What made him feel sure that land was near? 68. What took place on the evening of October 11th, 1492? When day broke, what did the voyagers behold ? 69. Who was the first to land ? Give an account of the landing. What was the land
the country in the name of the king and queen of Spain, his followers rendered him homage as viceroy, and the inhabitants, regarding the Spaniards as a superior race, prostrated themselves at his feet. The land thus reached was one of the Bahama [ba-hā'-ma] Islands. It was called by the Indians Guanahani [gwah-nah-hah'-ne], but received from Columbus the name of San Salvador, by which it is still known.
Learning from the natives that gold was found farther to the south, Columbus soon sailed in that direction, and discovered Cu'-ba, and His-pan-i-o'-la, since called by its original Indian name Haiti [hā'-te]. One of his vessels having been wrecked, he left 35 of his men as a colony on Hispaniola, and on the 1st of January, 1493, set sail for Spain. A violent storm on the return voyage threatened his frail vessels with destruction; and Columbus, fearing that his discoveries would be lost to the world, wrote an account of them on parchment, secured it in a cask, and threw it into the sea, in the hope that it would reach the shore in safety. The storm, however, abated; and, after being first driven to Lisbon, the shattered vessels finally entered the port of Palos, amid the acclamations of the people and the thunder of cannon. Columbus hastened to the king and queen, laid before them the history of his discoveries, presented specimen products of the new world, showed them the natives whom he had brought with him, and in return was loaded with the highest honors.
70. On the 25th of September, 1493, Columbus sailed again, from Ca'-diz, with 17 vessels and 1,500 men. riving at Hispaniola, he found that his colony had been cut off. The injustice and cruelty with which they had treated the unoffending natives had provoked the latter, gentle and friendly as they were, to summary vengeance. viding for the erection of a fort, Columbus proceeded to
thus reached ? Where did Columbus soon sail, and why? What island did he discover? What happened to him there? How many men did he leave there? Where did the rest go? What happened on the return voyage ? How did Columbus seek to prevent his discoveries from being lost to the world? What port did he finally reach? How was he received ? 70. When did Columbus