In our new series on Famous English Travellers, we will present to you some important English personalities from the past who have made a crucial contribution to our knowledge by their travels. We hope you will enjoy our small history excursion!


John Cabot

The man who discovered Canada

 

Dates:

Born in 1450 in the Italian port of Genoa

Died in 1499 in England

Job:

trader, civil engineer, explorer

Special Achievements:

Explored the coastline of Canada, was the second European to find North America (after Christopher Columbus)

 

Travels:

  • 1496 – the information about his first voyage comes from a letter sent to Columbus. He used only one ship and the weather and the lack of supplies forced him to come back quickly.
  • 1497 – everything known for this trip also comes from letters and a brief chronicle. He travelled on one ship to explore the Atlantic, hoping to find a sea route, a northwest passage to the Indies and China.  After 50 days, Cabot reached the New World instead (North America).
  • 1498 – after assembling a small fleet of 500 ships, John Cabot headed towards America once again. Two months later, one of the ships got caught in a storm and had to return. No other details are known about this expedition, it is assumed that the fleet got lost in the sea.

 

Cultural Impact:

  • A tower in Bristol – Cabot Tower and a shopping mall – Cabot Circus
  • John Cabot University – an American university in Rome, Italy

 

 

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