There is evidence that Phoenicia and Carthaginians found the Americas before the Europeans as suggested in this Wikipedia page.

We all know the basic story of Columbus wanting to find a short route to India but ending up in Central America.

Also, In Africa and the Discovery of America Leo Wiener says: Africans were already trading with Americans and Also there were Black people in Peru Before Columbus.

Plus there is scientific evidence of the current of the trade Winds in Africa and upper Europe toward the west. So it would be easier for Vikings and Africans to sail to America. additional link

So from this can we say that the knowledge about America already existed?

Is there significant proof of that?

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    I think OP is thinking of the North Atlantic trade winds.
    – SPavel
    Jan 27, 2023 at 15:41
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    If Columbus had prior information about the location of the Americas, wouldn't he have used that when he was trying to secure funding for the voyages? Jan 27, 2023 at 15:52
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    The only "knowledge about America" that existed in the Old World at that time was in the Norse maratime community, and that was from before printing, and a quarter of the globe away from where Columbus was sailing.
    – T.E.D.
    Jan 27, 2023 at 16:11
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    I’m voting to close this question because it is asking to provide evidence that a particular theory does not exist.
    – SPavel
    Jan 27, 2023 at 18:50
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    "Africa and the Discovery of America" was published in 1922 and Wiener was a linguist rather than a historian. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, and this ain't it.
    – SPavel
    Jan 27, 2023 at 19:02

2 Answers 2


No, because Columbus didn't know about America

Columbus set out to find an alternative route to East Asia, after the closing of the Silk Road by the Ottomans. This is the argument he made to the Spanish crown, and the Portuguese earlier; this is also why the Portuguese rejected him, since they already had a sea-based trade route south around Africa, discovered four years before Columbus's voyage (and also recognized how bogus Columbus's calculations were).

Due to shoddy mathematics, Columbus believed that by sailing West, he could reach East Asia more quickly. He had no idea that his measurements were completely off, and that there was a whole other continent in the way. By the time he made landfall, he still thought he was in China. It took ten years for anyone to realize that this was actually a new continent.

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    yes, that is the common knowledge everyone knows but I am asking if is there any evidence for an alternative theory or if it is false altogether.
    – xitas
    Jan 27, 2023 at 18:38

There is no reliable or verifiable evidence which proves that Christopher Columbus got "information about America from Africans", nor is there a shred of evidence proving that there were any African sailors aboard the Nina, Pinta or the Santa Maria.

I would say that such a question is a stretch of the historical imagination, considering the fact that Christopher Columbus never traveled to the African continent-(unless one considers The Canary Islands as a distant part of the African continent), nor did Columbus have any direct contact with African peoples. (It is possible that Columbus may have traveled through Morocco, due to its very close proximity to Spain, though the evidence for such a claim is flimsy...at best).

Columbus's travels began within the Mediterranean sea region and then with his "discovery" of America-(which in actuality, was The Bahamas), Columbus then ventured throughout the Carribean, Central America and the Northern part of South America-(though never "setting foot" in the continental United States). And, as a reminder, Columbus's initial journey was originally planned for the East Indies whereby he would establish distant trade routes with countries, such as India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia-(and perhaps even China).

I am not sure how Africa and Africans are central to the "discovery" of America during Columbus' time. The first Africans were brought to America-(primarily as slaves), by the Spanish Conquistador, Ponce De Leon in 1512/13...more specifically, to Northern Florida-(what is today, Saint Augustine), twenty years AFTER Columbus' accidental "discovery" of the AmericaS. This is the more traditionally acceptable view regarding the origins of the first Africans to the Americas-(or at least to America proper).

There is also no reliable or verifiable historical or archeological evidence that either the Phoenicians-(or their North African cousins, the Carthaginians), had ever "discovered" America over 2000 years ago. Such a thesis is rooted in lore and mythology...but not rooted in historical and archeological science.

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    As I stated in my answer, the notion of Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Egyptians or for that matter, Greeks & Romans....or an Mediterranean peoples traveling to America and/or the Americas 2000 plus years ago, based on the reliable historical and archeological evidence that we have before us, is a "stretch of the historical imagination". It is true that the Romans built a Lighthouse in La Coruna, Spain 2000 years ago-(which still stands) and La Coruna is located on the Atlantic side of the Iberian peninsula. And the Romans founded a city called, Baelo Claudia near present-day Tarifa, Spain....
    – Alex
    Jan 27, 2023 at 20:41
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    The Nina, Pinta, & Santa Maria were owned by 3 "Afro-Spanish brothers", and largely staffed with sailors from a sailing town recently conquered from Andalusia. So there definitely were "African" ties, if you count north Africa. IMHO that's a sloppy use of terminology (Africa is a damn big and diverse place, and this was just one extremity of it), but yeah technically African.
    – T.E.D.
    Jan 27, 2023 at 20:42
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    which is directly across from the Straits of Gibraltar-(or what the Romans and Greeks referred to as, "The pillars of Hercules"). And being in very close proximity to the beginnings of the Atlantic Ocean, MAY have possibly and potentially led the Romans to venture way beyond continental Europe. But, again, there is absolutely no evidence which proves that such ancient expeditions to America or the Americas ever happened. Sure, it's possible, but, archeologically and historically speaking, there is just no evidence to prove such claims.
    – Alex
    Jan 27, 2023 at 20:44
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    That's because Fell picked and chose his examples and didn't want to share what destroyed his hypothesis. It's all nonsense.
    – cmw
    Jan 27, 2023 at 22:34
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    My suggestion to Tomas and cmw is to stick with the question regarding Christopher Columbus, America and Africans. Discussions regarding the Micmac language and its possible relationship with Egyptian hieroglyphs, while interesting, is, frankly speaking, immaterial to this overall discussion.
    – Alex
    Jan 27, 2023 at 22:59

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