The Columbus Letters

Feb 10, 2019 455

BY: Janice Therese Mancuso

On his return to Spain, sailing in January and February 526 years ago, Christopher Columbus composed three letters describing his first voyage west and his experiences on the islands he explored. The letters were purportedly sent to Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand; Luis De Sant Angel (Santangel), who helped finance the voyage; and Gabriel Sanchez, treasurer of the Monarchs.

Columbus had an unusual writing style, using mostly Spanish but blending in Portuguese. Currently, 17 editions of the original letters have been documented: translated – from Spanish to Latin and other languages – copied by hand and printed. Sources state that no original letters written by Columbus have yet to be found.

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