Christopher Columbus the Liar

Only available on StudyMode
  • Download(s) : 502
  • Published : April 16, 2005
Open Document
Text Preview
The letter Christopher Columbus wrote back to Spain to report his findings in the New World sparked intrigued me and sparked my imagination. Why I have been so absorbed in this letter I can not explain. This letter is supposed to be about describing an unknown land, a land that has not been seen by anyone besides the natives, but it seems that there is more to it than that. Columbus is known in elementary schools as the man who found the New World, and is regarded as a hero. To the contrary, historians who have done more research on Columbus say that he was driven by fame and fortune and that he was tyrannical in his ways with the indigenous peoples of the places that he came to find. I feel that the contradictory tones Columbus uses gives this letter an eerie feel, and Columbus's eventual desire to take over the indigenous peoples brings doubt on his reliability as an accurate and fair eyewitness. Columbus begins this letter to Luis De Sant Angel by saying how fortunate he was to find these great islands. Right away, before even describing his findings, he thanks the king and queen and begins to explain how he named the islands he discovered. Everyone knows that the king and queen gave Columbus those ships, yet he wanted to recognize them for some reason. I think that he wanted the king and queen to feel as if they themselves discovered the islands, not him. Whether it was out of fear, or out of respect, Columbus really gave them credit. So much tribute was given that the first island they discovered, Columbus named San Salvador, commemorating the king. He seemed like he really wanted to give credit to everyone that may have had a hand in this voyage, especially the king and queen, who financially supported this expedition. Contrary to what historians believe about Columbus, he was very humble and giving in the naming of these islands. Keeping with the standard tone of the Spanish monarchial society, he named these islands for the wisdom and...
tracking img