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The Discovery of America

In the 15th Century, Christopher Columbus (Genoa, 1451?-Valladolid, 1506) conceives the idea of getting to The Maluku Islands (the trade center of spices). He decides to take a short cut used by the Portuguese sailors, but his King, John the II of Portugal (Lisbon, Portugal, 1455-Alvor, Portugal, 1495) refuses. Columbus offers the project to the Catholic Monarchs in 1486, starting the pilgrimage that will lead him to his goal.

On April 17, 1492 the Capitulations of Santa Fe (Granada) were signed. Due to this fact, Columbus is appointed admiral, viceroy and governor of the lands he discovers. The Columbian Project launches on August 3rd, 1492 from Palos de la Frontera port (Huelva) and reaches American land (Guanahani from the Antilles) on October 12. He continues his route around the Cuba islands and Hispaniola. This first voyage brings to the Monarchy benefits and a conflict with Portugal who believes the Treaty of Alcáçovas (1479) has been violated. The papal bulls filed by the Pope Alexander VI (Xàtiva, Valencia, 1431-Rome, Italy, 1503) will support the Spanish discovery title, as well as the demarcation of expansive zones. But the Luso-Castilian rivalry wont resolve itself until the signing of the Treaty of Tordesillas (1494).

In this first voyage, Columbus will not reach the Maluku Islands (the spice land), starting a second one with the purpose to demonstrate that the encounter territory was, in fact, India, where he started the process of evangelism and colonization. With a further southern direction he will start at Cadiz on September 25, 1493 and will end at the same port on June 11, 1496. The coasted territories were Barlovento Islands, The Eleven Thousand Islands (The Virgin Islands), Puerto Rico, the South Coast of Cuba and Jamaica. He founds the first Hispanic city in America called La Isabela at the isle of Hispaniola (current Dominican Republic).

The third voyage departs from Sanlúcar de Barrameda (Cadiz) on May 30, 1498. He sails around a more southern area, coast lining Trinidad Island, and for the first time, lands on continental territory at the Paria Peninsula (Venezuela) and also reaches the Cubagua Island. Nevertheless, Columbus finds himself immersed in the turmoil between the indigenous and the Spaniards that leads to the intervention of the inquirer Francisco de Bobadilla (Spain, 15th Century-Atlantic Ocean, 1502) sent by the Catholic Monarchs to investigate the possible misappropriations from Columbus. As a result, Columbus returns to Spain in custody on November 25, 1500.

His fourth voyage has as goal to circle the world. He sets sail on May 9, 1502 from Cadiz and spots firm land on July 27. He crosses the Atlantic without any findings. When heading to Hispaniola Island, he reaches Jamaica, returning two years after to Spain, disembarking on Sanlúcar de Barrameda on November 7, 1504

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