John Cabot (Italian: Giovanni Caboto, (1450 – 1499) was an Italian navigator and explorer. In 1497, sailing westward from England in his ship Matthew, he landed in what he thought was Asia. In fact he came to North America, in what is now eastern Canada, which he claimed for King Henry VII. The exact place Cabot landed has not been determined. He died in England in 1499.
Early years[change | change source]
Giovanni Caboto (his Italian name) was probably born in Genoa about 1450. Most of his early life was not written about so much of his history is missing. When he was still young his family moved to Venice. Venice was a larger seaport than Genoa and at the time was the most important in all of Europe. Growing up there he learned a great deal about sailing and the sea. Cabot became an excellent sailor. His father was a trader and taught Giovanni (John) all about the spice trade.
Cabot married a young woman named Mattea (female form of the name Matthew) about 1482. They had three sons who all sailed with their father. By this time he was a merchant and traveled widely. He and his family moved to the port of Bristol, England about 1490.
Voyage to North America[change | change source]
He set sail from Bristol. Cabot sailed across the North Atlantic in about seven weeks. His ship, the Matthew had a crew of 20 men. During the voyage they saw enormous quantities of Cod fish. Fishermen would soon follow to take advantage of the rich fishing of the Grand Banks of Newfoundland.
References[change | change source]
- "John Cabot Biography Explorer (c. 1450–c. 1499)". Bio/A&E Television Networks, LLC. Retrieved 16 December 2015.
- "John Cabot". History/A&E Television Networks, LLC. Retrieved 16 December 2015.
- "John Cabot: Explorer". EnchantedLearning.com. Retrieved 16 December 2015.
- Robin S. Doak, Cabot: John Cabot and the Journey to North America (Minneapolis, MN: Compass Point Books, 2003), pp. 4–12
- "John Cabot - c.1450 - 1498". BBC. Retrieved 16 December 2015.
- Doug Sylvester, World Explorers (San Diego: Classroom Complete Press Ltd, 1997), p. 36
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