131 votes
Accepted

Why did Columbus cross the mid-Atlantic instead of exploring from Greenland?

There's a lot in the question that seems to be assuming modern knowledge that Columbus most likely did not possess. There is no good evidence the Iberian maritime community in the late 15th century ...
T.E.D.'s user avatar
  • 119k
22 votes

Did anyone in Europe predict the existence of the Americas?

Europeans, perhaps not, someone in the old world, yes. Al-Biruni (973–1050) lived in Khwarezm (modern Uzbekistan). Among other works in mathematics, astronomy, physics, mineralogy, history and ...
Kostya_I's user avatar
  • 978
22 votes

Why did Columbus cross the mid-Atlantic instead of exploring from Greenland?

Let's suppose that Columbus knew about Greenland. European colonies in Greenland were abandoned by that time. Therefore sailing there was actually useless, because it would be impossible to get ...
Santiago's user avatar
  • 4,901
21 votes
Accepted

When Adam Smith discusses "corn" to what crop does he refer?

The word corn, Wiktionary tells us, can mean: (Britain) The main cereal plant grown for its grain in a given region, such as oats in parts of Scotland and Ireland, and wheat or barley in England ...
mgkrebbs's user avatar
  • 1,567
18 votes

How did Columbus calculate the size of the Earth?

Well, Columbus case is one hallmark how to cherry-pick your data to come to desirable conclusions. Columbus began with the values of the best sources available: from the Arabian astronomer al-...
Thorsten S.'s user avatar
  • 5,166
18 votes

Were beaches red with lobsters upon arrival of Columbus?

Adding to what @Alex said "typical" lobsters (i.e., the lobsters that humans eat and the ones that turn red when you cook them) don't even extend as far south as Hispaniola. They are a cold-...
user2352714's user avatar
9 votes
Accepted

Do Columbus' letters reveal that he was a Marrano?

While there are some not very widely supported theories out there that postulate some somehow Jewish origin for Columbus (esWP: Cristóbal Colón, Origen, Hipótesis secundarias, enWP: Catalan-Jewish ...
LаngLаngС's user avatar
  • 80.9k
9 votes
Accepted

Why was Columbus not aware of the existence of America?

Simply, the Greenland settlement those discoveries were centered on died out before the Printing Press. The last anyone heard from it for sure was 1410, and Gutenberg started working on his press in ...
T.E.D.'s user avatar
  • 119k
8 votes

Did Columbus really never know he reached a new continent?

That Columbus died thinking he hadn't reached a "New World" is one of the most widespread of myths....In 1492 he might've thought he reached Asia, but in 1498--during the Third Voyage--he ...
Lucius Vanini's user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

Where did the term "Indies" come from?

The geographical ideas of the middle ages which were just ending at the start of age of exploration included the idea of the Three Indias. The three Indias included the Greater India which started at ...
MAGolding's user avatar
  • 19.3k
5 votes

Why did Columbus cross the mid-Atlantic instead of exploring from Greenland?

The question seems to be based on something of a false premise. Although the great circle routes from Europe to north American cities do often pass close to or over Greenland, Columbus was starting ...
David Richerby's user avatar
4 votes

Why did Columbus cross the mid-Atlantic instead of exploring from Greenland?

General navigation practice of the time was to find your latitude, and then sail along that parallel until you reached your destination, as determining longitude was problematic at best. It also ...
MikeMontana's user avatar
3 votes

Were beaches red with lobsters upon arrival of Columbus?

I very strongly doubt that, growing up in the Caribbean. The type of lobsters found there are neither red nor at all capable of getting out of the water. At most you'll seem skim-walk on sandy ...
Italian Philosophers 4 Monica's user avatar
2 votes

Columbus 1492 - how many years for news to reach all Europe (including Ottoman empire)?

It did not take years. By the end of 1493 everyone who cared knew about this. Columbus returned from his first voyage on 15 of March 1493. According to Wikipedia: Almost immediately after his arrival ...
Alex's user avatar
  • 38.9k
1 vote

Did Christopher Columbus stay at a Lodge in Cordoba?

So far all the links I've found about this hotel and Columbus start with "legend has it" or "they say". While Columbus stayed in Cordoba for some time, while trying to woo the spanish monarchs to fund ...
Rekesoft's user avatar
  • 578

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible