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Encyclopedia > Amerigo Vespucci
Amerigo Vespucci

Statue at the Uffizi, Florence.
Born March 9, 1454(1454-03-09)
Florence, Italy
Died February 22, 1512 (aged 57)

Amerigo Vespucci (Américo Vespucio in Spanish) (March 8, 1454 - February 22, 1512) was an Italian merchant, explorer and cartographer. He played a senior role in two voyages which explored the east coast of South America between 1499 and 1502. On the first of these voyages he discovered that South America extended much further south than believed by other European explorers crossing the Atlantic, who thought they were reaching Asia (the Indies). Vespucci's voyages became widely known in Europe after two accounts attributed to him were published between 1502 and 1504. In 1507, Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the new continent America after Vespucci's first name, Amerigo. In an accompanying book, Waldseemüller published one of the Vespucci accounts, which led to criticism that Vespucci was trying to usurp Christopher Columbus' glory. However, the rediscovery in the 18th century of other letters by Vespucci, primarily the Soderini Letter, has led to the view that the early published accounts were fabrications, not by Vespucci, but by others. Waldseemüller may have suspected the self-promoting tendencies of Vespucci even in his own time as later publications replaced America with Terra Incognita. ImageMetadata File history File links Download high resolution version (622x1046, 295 KB) Summary Amerigo Vespucci (9 March 1454 in Florence, Italy - 22 February 1512) was an Italian merchant and cartographer who voyaged to and wrote about the Americas. ... The narrow courtyard between the Uffizis two wings creates the effect of a short, idealized street. ... is the 68th day of the year (69th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1454 was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar. ... is the 53rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1512 (MDXII) was a leap year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar. ... is the 67th day of the year (68th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1454 was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar. ... is the 53rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1512 (MDXII) was a leap year starting on Thursday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar. ... A merchant making up the account by Shiatsus Hokusai Merchants function as professionals who deal with trade, dealing in commodities that they do not produce themselves, in order to produce profit. ... Explorer redirects here. ... Cartography or mapmaking (in Greek chartis = map and graphein = write) is the study and practice of making maps or globes. ... South America South America is a continent crossed by the equator, with most of its area in the Southern Hemisphere. ... The Indies, on the display globe of the Field Museum, Chicago, Illinois The Indies or East Indies (or East India) is a term used to describe lands of South and Southeast Asia, occupying all of the former British India, the present Indian Union, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, the Maldives... Martin Waldseemüller (19th century painting). ... World map showing the Americas CIA political map of the Americas in an equal-area projection The Americas are the lands of the New World, consisting of the continents of North America and South America with their associated islands and regions. ... Christopher Columbus (1451 – May 20, 1506) was a navigator, colonizer, and explorer and one of the first Europeans to explore the Americas after the Vikings. ...

Contents

Biography

Amerigo Vespucci was born in Florence, as the third child of a respected family. His father was a notary for the Money Changers' Guild of Florence. Amerigo Vespucci worked for Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco de' Medici and his brother, Giovanni. In 1492 they sent him to work at their agency in Seville, Spain. Florence (or Firenze, Florentia and Fiorenza) is the capital city of the Italian region of Tuscany, and of the province of Florence. ... For other uses, see Seville (disambiguation). ...

Illustration of the birthplace of Amerigo Vespucci.
Illustration of the birthplace of Amerigo Vespucci.

In 1508, after only two voyages to the Americas, the position of pilot major (chief of navigation) of Spain was created for Vespucci, with the responsibility of training pilots for ocean voyages. He died of malaria on February 22, 1512 in Seville, Spain. Malaria is a vector-borne infectious disease caused by protozoan parasites. ...


Two letters attributed to Vespucci were published during his lifetime. Mundus Novus (New World) was a Latin translation of a lost Italian letter sent from Lisbon to Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco de' Medici. It describes a voyage to South America in 1501-1502. Mundus Novus was published in late 1502 or early 1503 and soon reprinted and distributed in numerous European countries.[1] Lettera di Amerigo Vespucci delle isole nuovamente trovate in quattro suoi viaggi (Letter of Amerigo Vespucci concerning the isles newly discovered on his four voyages), known as Lettera al Soderini or just Lettera, was a letter in Italian addressed to Piero Soderini. Printed in 1504 or 1505, it claimed to be an account of four voyages to the Americas made by Vespucci between 1497 and 1504. A Latin translation was published by the German Martin Waldseemüller in 1507 in Cosmographiae Introductio, a book on cosmography and geography, as Quattuor Americi Vespuccij navigationes (Four Voyages of Amerigo Vespucci).[1] In 1508, King Ferdinand made Vespucci Pilot Major of Spain at a huge salary and commissioned him to start a school for navigators out of his home to standardize and modernize navigation techniques used by Spanish sea captains exploring the world. Future luminaries such as Magellan learned at his knee, and Vespucci even developed a rudimentary method of determining a fairly accurate determinant for finding longitude (which only more accurate chronometers could later improve upon). For other uses, see Lisbon (disambiguation). ... Piero Soderini (1450 - 1513), was a Florentine statesman. ... Martin Waldseemüller (19th century painting). ... Cosmographiae introductio was a book published in 1507 to accompany Martin Waldseemüllers map of the world and wall-map, which was the first appearance of the name America. It is widely held to have been written by Matthias Ringmann although some historians attribute it to Waldseemüller himself. ... Cosmography is the science that maps the general features of the universe; describes both heaven and earth (but without encroaching on geography or astronomy) A representation of the earth or the heavens. ...


In the 18th century three unpublished familiar letters from Vespucci to Lorenzo de' Medici were rediscovered. One describes a voyage made in 1499-1500 which corresponds with the second of the "four voyages". Another was written from Cape Verde in 1501 in the early part of the third of the four voyages, before crossing the Atlantic. The third letter was sent from Lisbon after the completion of that voyage.`[1]


Some have suggested that Vespucci, in the two letters published in his lifetime, was exaggerating his role and constructed deliberate fabrications. However, many scholars now believe that the two letters were not written by him but were fabrications by others based in part on genuine letters by Vespucci. It was the publication and widespread circulation of the letters that led Martin Waldseemüller to name the new continent America on his world map of 1507 in Lorraine. Vespucci used a Latinised form of his name, Americus Vespucius, in his Latin writings, which Waldseemüller used as a base for the new name, taking the feminine form America. (See also Naming of America.) Amerigo itself is an Italian form of the medieval Latin Emericus (see also Saint Emeric of Hungary), which through the German form Heinrich (in English, Henry) derived from the Germanic name Haimirich.[citation needed] Martin Waldseemüller (19th century painting). ... World map showing the Americas CIA political map of the Americas in an equal-area projection The Americas are the lands of the New World, consisting of the continents of North America and South America with their associated islands and regions. ... Lorraine coat of arms location of the Lorraine province Lorraine (French: Lorraine; German: Lothringen) is a historical area in present-day northeast France. ... In literature, latinisation is the practice of writing a name in a Latin style when writing in Latin so as to more closely emulate Latin authors, or to present a more impressive image. ... For other uses, see Latins and Latin (disambiguation). ... World map showing the Americas CIA political map of the Americas in an equal-area projection The Americas are the lands of the New World, consisting of the continents of North America and South America with their associated islands and regions. ... Prince St. ... Heinrich is a male given name or surname of Germanic origin. ... The English language is a West Germanic language that originates in England. ... Look up Henry in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Haimirich is an old Middle High German given name from which many modern names derive. ...


The two disputed letters claim that Vespucci made four voyages to America, while at most two can be verified from other sources. At the moment there is a dispute between historians on when Vespucci visited mainland the first time. Some great historians like German Arciniegas and Gabriel Camargo Perez think that his first voyage was done in June 1497 with the Spanish Juan de la Cosa. Little is known of his last voyage in 1503–1504 or even whether it actually took place. Vespucci's real historical importance may well be more in his letters, whether he wrote them all or not, than in his discoveries. From these letters, the European public learned about the newly discovered continent of the Americas for the first time; its existence became generally known throughout Europe within a few years of the letters' publication.


Voyages

Portrait of Americo Vespucci, part of the Madonna della Misericordia by Domenico Ghirlandaio at the Oggnissanti church in Florence
Portrait of Americo Vespucci, part of the Madonna della Misericordia by Domenico Ghirlandaio at the Oggnissanti church in Florence

According to historians such as Martin Fernandez de Navarrete, Germán Arciniegas and Gabriel Camargo Perez, the first voyage of Amerigo Vespucci took place in 1497, probably in a trip organized by King Ferdinand, who wanted to clarify if the mainland of the landmass was far away from the island of Hispaniola, which had been discovered by Columbus. An Old Man with a Strawberry Nose (1480). ... This article or section should be merged with Martín Fernández de Navarrete Martín Fernandez de Navarrete (1765-1844) was a Spanish historian who rediscovered Las Casas abstract of the log Christopher Columbus made on his first voyage. ... Germán Arciniegas (Born December 6, 1900 in Bogotá, died November 29, 1999) was a Colombian essayist and historian. ... Early map of Hispaniola Hispaniola (from Spanish, La Española) is the second-largest and most populous island of the Antilles, lying between the islands of Cuba to the west, and Puerto Rico to the east. ...


The captain of this company, which set sail in May 1497 was Vicente Yanez Pinzon, captain of the Nina on Columbus's first voyage, and may have included Juan Diaz de Solis. Accompanying Vespucci was pilot and cartographer Juan de la Cosa (the then-famous captain who had sailed with Columbus in 1492). According to the first letter of Vespucci, they reached land at 16 degrees latitude, probably on the coast of La Guajira peninsula in present-day Colombia or the coast of Nicaragua. They then followed the coastal land mass of central America before returning to the Atlantic Ocean via the Straits of Florida between Florida and Cuba. Juan de la Cosa Map of Juan de la Cosa Juan de la Cosa (c. ... Christopher Columbus (1451 – May 20, 1506) was a navigator, colonizer, and explorer and one of the first Europeans to explore the Americas after the Vikings. ... Motto: Capital Riohacha Governor Area 20,848 km² Population  - Total (2003)  - Density   524,619 20 people/km² Adjective guajiro Image:El grone. ... The Straits of Florida, Florida Straits, or Florida Strait is a strait located south-southeast of the North American mainland, generally accepted to be between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean, and between the Florida Keys and Cuba. ... This article is about the U.S. State of Florida. ...


In his letters, Vespucci described this trip, and once Juan de la Cosa returned to Spain, a famous world map, depicting Cuba as an island, was produced. About 1499–1500, Vespucci joined an expedition in the service of Spain, with Alonso de Ojeda (or Hojeda) as the fleet commander. The intention was to sail around the southern end of the African mainland into the Indian Ocean.[2] After hitting land at the coast of what is now Guyana, the two seem to have separated. Vespucci sailed southward, discovering the mouth of the Amazon River and reaching 6°S, before turning around and seeing Trinidad and the Orinoco River and returning to Spain by way of Hispaniola. The letter, to Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco de' Medici, claims that Vespucci determined his longitude celestially [3] on August 23, 1499, while on this voyage. However, that claim may be fraudulent,[3] which could cast doubt on the letter's credibility. Alonso de Ojeda (c. ... This article is about the river. ... For other uses, see Trinidad (disambiguation). ... This page is about the Orinoco River, for the Aphra Behn novel see Oroonoko With a length of 2140 km, the Orinoco is one of the largest rivers of South America. ... Early map of Hispaniola Hispaniola (from Spanish, La Española) is the second-largest and most populous island of the Antilles, lying between the islands of Cuba to the west, and Puerto Rico to the east. ... {| style=float:right; |- | |- | |} is the 235th day of the year (236th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1499 was a common year starting on Sunday (see link for calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ...


The last certain voyage of Vespucci was led by Gonçalo Coelho in 1501–1502 in the service of Portugal. Departing from Lisbon, the fleet sailed first to Cape Verde where they met two of Pedro Álvares Cabral's ships returning from India. In a letter from Cape Verde, Vespucci says that he hopes to visit the same lands that Álvares Cabral had explored, suggesting that the intention is to sail west to Asia, as on the 1499-1500 voyage.[2] On reaching the coast of Brazil, they sailed south along the coast of South America to Rio de Janeiro's bay. If his own account is to be believed, he reached the latitude of Patagonia before turning back, although this also seems doubtful, since his account does not mention the broad estuary of the Río de la Plata, which he must have seen if he had gotten that far south. Portuguese maps of South America, created after the voyage of Coelho and Vespucci, do not show any land south of present-day Cananéia at 25° S, so this may represent the southernmost extent of their voyages. Gonçalo Coelho (15th century/16th century), Portuguese explorer of the South Atlantic and of the South American coast (expedition to Brazil and further south in 1502). ... For other uses, see Lisbon (disambiguation). ... Pedro Álvares (about 1467 – about 1520), pron. ... South America South America is a continent crossed by the equator, with most of its area in the Southern Hemisphere. ... This article is about the Brazilian city. ... Patagonia, as most commonly defined (in orange). ... This page is about the South American estuary. ... Cananéia is a beach region at the South of the state of São Paulo, Brazil, near to where the Tordesilhas Line passed. ...


After the first half of the expedition, Vespucci mapped Alpha and Beta Centauri, as well as the constellation Crux, the Southern Cross.[3] Although these stars had been known to the ancient Greeks, gradual precession had lowered them below the European skyline so that they were forgotten.[4] Alpha Centauri (α Cen / α Centauri, also known as Rigil Kentaurus), is the brightest star system in the southern constellation of Centaurus. ... Beta Centauri (β Cen / β Centauri), also known as Hadar or Agena, is the second brightest star in the constellation Centaurus and the eleventh brightest star in the nighttime sky. ... This article is about the star grouping. ... CRUX is a lightweight, i686-optimized Linux distribution targeted at experienced Linux users. ... This article is about the astronomical object. ... Precession redirects here. ... For other uses, see Europe (disambiguation). ...


On his return to Lisbon, Vespucci wrote in a letter to de' Medici that the land masses they explored were much larger than anticipated and different from the Asia described by earlier Europeans and, therefore, must be a New World, that is, a previously unknown fourth continent, after Europe, Asia, and Africa. For other uses, see Asia (disambiguation). ... A world map showing the continent of Africa Africa is the worlds second-largest and second most-populous continent, after Asia. ...


Named after Amerigo Vespucci

Florence (Firenze) Amerigo Vespucci Airport is an airport in Florence, Italy. ... Florence (or Firenze, Florentia and Fiorenza) is the capital city of the Italian region of Tuscany, and of the province of Florence. ... The Amerigo Vespucci The Amerigo Vespucci is a world-famous tall ship of the Marina Militare, named after the explorer Amerigo Vespucci. ... The USCGC Eagle. ... World map showing the Americas CIA political map of the Americas in an equal-area projection The Americas are the lands of the New World, consisting of the continents of North America and South America with their associated islands and regions. ... North American redirects here. ... South America South America is a continent crossed by the equator, with most of its area in the Southern Hemisphere. ... Motto: (traditional) In God We Trust (official, 1956–present) Anthem: The Star-Spangled Banner Capital Washington, D.C. Largest city New York City Official language(s) None at the federal level; English de facto Government Federal Republic  - President George W. Bush (R)  - Vice President Dick Cheney (R) Independence - Declared - Recognized... Location of Santiago commune in Greater Santiago Coordinates: , Region Province Foundation February 12, 1541 Government  - Mayor Raúl Alcaíno Lihn Area 1  - City 22. ...

See also

  • Naming of America

Gucci bag also named after amerigo Vespucci World map showing the Americas CIA political map of the Americas in an equal-area projection The Americas are the lands of the New World, consisting of the continents of North America and South America with their associated islands and regions. ...


Notes

  1. ^ a b c Formisano, Luciano (Ed.) (1992). Letters from a New World: Amerigo Vespucci's Discovery of America. New York: Marsilio. ISBN 0-941419-62-2. Pp. xix-xxvi.
  2. ^ a b O'Gorman, Edmundo (1961). The Invention of America. Indiana University Press, p. 106-107. 
  3. ^ a b c On a clear night with calm seas, stars could be identified near the horizon to judge latitude/longitude celestially. Although South America's continental shelf drops quickly into the deep ocean beyond the Orinoco River, the mouth is on the shelf, avoiding the ocean swells and waves which hinder visibility of stars near the horizon. Seamen who could navigate from Europe to America and back could chart stars on the horizon, especially for a cartographer like Vespucci.
  4. ^ Dinwiddie, Robert (2005). Universe: The Definitive Visual Dictionary. DK Adult Publishing, p. 396.

Edmundo OGorman (* November 24, 1906 in Mexico City – + September 28, 1995 in Mexico City) was a Mexican writer, historian and philosopher. ... This article is about the geographical term. ... Longitude is the east-west geographic coordinate measurement most commonly utilized in cartography and global navigation. ... South America South America is a continent crossed by the equator, with most of its area in the Southern Hemisphere. ...  Sediment  Rock  Mantle  The global continental shelf, highlighted in cyan The continental shelf is the extended perimeter of each continent and associated coastal plain, which is covered during interglacial periods such as the current epoch by relatively shallow seas (known as shelf seas) and gulfs. ... This page is about the Orinoco River, for the Aphra Behn novel see Oroonoko With a length of 2140 km, the Orinoco is one of the largest rivers of South America. ... Cartography is the study of map making and cartographers are map makers. ... Universe is a book by Robert Dinwiddie and nine co-authors. ...

References

  • Amerigo: the Man Who Gave His Name to America by Fernández-Armesto, Felipe; Weidenfeld & Nicolson [2006] (hardcover, ISBN 0-297-84802-X).
  • Amerigo and the New World by Arciniegas, German; Alfred A. Knopf [1955]
  • Heroes of American History: Amerigo Vespucci by Ober, Frederick A.; Harper & Brothers [1907]
  • Amerigo Vespucci: Pilot Major by Pohl, Frederick J.; Columbia University Press [1944]
  • Norbert Schulz: Amerigo Vespucci, Mundus Novus (mit Zweittexten). M.M.O. VERLAG ZUR FÖRDERUNG DES MITTEL- UND NEULATEINISCHEN, Butjadingen 2007. (Neulateinische Texte für den altsprachlichen Unterricht (Vivarium (Series neolatina, Band II))) ISBN 978-3-9811144-2-3

External links

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Project Gutenberg, abbreviated as PG, is a volunteer effort to digitize, archive and distribute cultural works. ...

  Results from FactBites:
 
CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Amerigo Vespucci (0 words)
The mother of Amerigo's father was Nanna, daughter of Mestro Michele, of the Onesti of Pescia, and sister of Mestro Michele, the father of Nicolè and of Francesco, who resided in the magistrato supremo of the Priors in the Republic of Florence.
Vespucci received his first instruction from his uncle Giorgio Antonio, a Platonic philosopher who was a teacher of the greater part of the Florentine nobility.
But as regards Vespucci, there are, at Florence, the apocryphal synchronous copies of all the accounts of his voyages, except the text that was used for the publication of the "Mundus novus", of which accounts, as will be seen further on, a correct edition is lacking.
Amerigo Vespucci - MSN Encarta (217 words)
Amerigo Vespucci (Latin Americus Vespucius) (1454-1512), Italian navigator, for whom the continents of North and South America are named.
Most scholars agree that Vespucci explored a large section of the northern coast of South America during an expedition led by Spanish soldier Alonso de Ojeda in 1499 and 1500.
German geographer and cartographer Martin Waldseemüller, who translated Vespucci's narrative in 1507, was the first to use America, an adaptation of the explorer's given name of Amerigo, as a name for the southern continent.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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