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Amerigo Vespucci   By: (1849-1913)

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[Transcriber's Note: Every effort has been made to replicate this text as faithfully as possible, including obsolete and variant spellings and other inconsistencies. Text that has been changed to correct an obvious error by the publisher is noted at the end of this ebook.]

AMERIGO VESPUCCI

BY

FREDERICK A. OBER

HEROES OF AMERICAN HISTORY

ILLUSTRATED

[Illustration]

HARPER & BROTHERS PUBLISHERS NEW YORK AND LONDON 1907

Copyright, 1907, by HARPER & BROTHERS.

All rights reserved.

Published February, 1907.

[Illustration: AMERIGO VESPUCCI]

CONTENTS

CHAP. PAGE

I. YOUNG AMERIGO AND HIS FAMILY 1

II. AMERIGO'S FRIENDS AND TEACHERS 15

III. VESPUCCI'S FAVORITE AUTHORS 32

IV. IN THE SERVICE OF SPAIN 45

V. CONVERSATIONS WITH COLUMBUS 59

VI. VESPUCCI'S DEBATABLE VOYAGE 76

VII. VESPUCCI'S "SECOND" VOYAGE 101

VIII. WITH OJEDA THE FIGHTER 126

IX. CANNIBALS, GIANTS, AND PEARLS 138

X. FAMOUS FELLOW VOYAGERS 148

XI. ON THE COAST OF BRAZIL 165

XII. THE "FOURTH PART OF THE EARTH" 179

XIII. THE FOURTH GREAT VOYAGE 194

XIV. KING FERDINAND'S FRIEND 209

XV. PILOT MAJOR OF SPAIN 221

XVI. HOW AMERICA WAS NAMED 237

ILLUSTRATIONS

AMERIGO VESPUCCI Frontispiece

A CONJECTURAL RESTORATION OF TOSCANELLI'S MAP Facing p. 20

MARCO POLO " 40

OJEDA'S FIRST VOYAGE " 130

ROUTES OF THE DISCOVERERS " 166

NORTH AMERICA FROM THE GLOBE OF JOHANN SCHÖNER " 244

AUTHORITIES ON AMERIGO VESPUCCI

XVIth CENTURY. Vespucci's letters to Soderini and L. P. F. de' Medici, reproduced in this volume.

XVIIth CENTURY. Herrera, in his Historia General (etc.), Madrid, 1601; "probably followed Las Casas, whose MSS. he had."

XVIIIth CENTURY. Dandini, A. M., Vita e Lettere di Amerigo Vespucci , Florence, 1745.

Canovai, Stanislac, Elogia di Amerigo Vespucci , 1778.

XIXth CENTURY. Navarrete, M. F. de, Noticias Exactas de Americo Vespucio , contained in his Coleccion, Madrid, 1825 1837.

Humboldt, Alexander von, Examen Critique de l'Histoire de la Géographie de Nouveau Continent , Paris, 1836 1839.

Lester, C. Edwards, The Life and Voyages of Americus Vespucius , New York, 1846; reprinted, in de luxe edition, New York, 1903.

Varnhagen, F. A., Baron de Porto Seguro, Amerigo Vespucci, son Caractère, ses Écrits (etc.), Lima, 1865; Vienna, 1874. A collection of monographs called by Fiske "the only intelligent modern treatise on the life and voyages of this navigator."

Fiske, John, The Discovery of America , Boston, 1899; contains an exhaustive critical examination of Vespucci's voyages to which the reader should refer for more extended information.

AMERIGO VESPUCCI[1]

I

YOUNG AMERIGO AND HIS FAMILY

1451 1470

Cradled in the valley of the Arno, its noble architecture fitly supplementing its numerous natural charms, lies the Tuscan city of Florence, the birthplace of immortal Dante, the early home of Michael Angelo, the seat of the Florentine Medici, the scene of Savonarola's triumphs and his tragic end. Fame has come to many sons of Florence, as poets, statesmen, sculptors, painters, travellers; but perhaps none has achieved a distinction so unique, apart, and high as the subject of this volume, after whom the continents of the western hemisphere were named.

Amerigo Vespucci was born in Florence, March 9, 1451, just one hundred and fifty years after Dante was banished from the city in which both first saw the light... Continue reading book >>




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