Home Commercial trading The United States knew about Italian sailors 150 years before Columbus

The United States knew about Italian sailors 150 years before Columbus


Analysis of ancient documents by Italian mediator Paulo Cesa, an expert in medieval literature, suggests that Italian sailors knew of the existence of the United States at least 150 years before the “discovery” of the Genoese Christopher Columbus in 1492.

The document contains information Chronicle Universalis, Written in 1345 by the Milanese brother Calvinius Flama. According to the site Physical, A text discovered only in 2013, specifies that the sailors of Genoa already knew the existence of a land called Markland or Marquelde, from Icelandic sources.

“We were faced with the presence of the first reference to the American continent,” said Cesa, professor of literature, philology and linguistics at the University of Milan. Unknown lands.

Galvanius Flama was a Dominican brother who lived in Milan and was associated with the family that ruled the city of Genoa, which at the time was an independent kingdom. He wrote many historical texts in Latin, mainly in history subjects. His testimony is valuable information on contemporary Milanese facts of which he had direct knowledge.

In Flama’s time, Genoa was one of the best maritime powers in Europe, so it was a source of information about what was happening in different parts of the world. From the sailors of Calvinius, rumors of lands in the northwest may have had commercial interest, as well as information about Greenland, which he described accurately, as far as he knows.

“But these rumors were too vague to be consistent in the graphical representations,” notes the professor. Therefore, Marcalada was not classified as “new land” at the time.

Ruins of Huvalci Church, built by Scandinavian settlers in Greenland at the beginning of the 13th century Fig: 57 (public domain)

It should be noted that Icelandic sources report the discovery of three parts of North America, Markland, Vinland and Hellland, by the novelist Leaf Erickson in the year 1000. An Icelandic document from 1347, two years after the text of Flama, talks about a ship. , On his return from Markland to Greenland, got lost and ended up in Iceland, but did not specify the location of the origin.

The land described by Galvanius is as rich in trees and animals as the Markland in Icelandic texts. Greenland has not been occupied by Icelanders and Norwegians since 986 as it has been described as a Galvanian glacier, wasteland, and wasteland.

According to Sisa, the Genoese could have brought various messages from these lands to the city, some real and others imagining that they were trading with Scottish, British, Danish or Norwegian sailors.

“I have no reason to doubt him” (Flama), he adds, “We have observed for a long time that the 14th century ocean maps drawn in Genoa and Catalonia have a geographical representation of the North, thanks to contact direct with these regions.

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