Columbus. Christopher Columbus of Spain went to the king and queen to ask authorization for an expedition. He wanted to venture to the India. The New World, he believed, could be found by sailing west across the ocean. No one had ever sailed west before. The reason no one had done this before was because everyone believed that the world was flat. Columbus, on the other hand, believed that it was round. The movie 1492: Conquest of Paradise brings out the handout Privileges and Prerogatives Granted to Christopher Columbus. According to the handout, Columbus was to have complete control over whatever land he discovered. After his death, his heirs would inherit the land and take over control. Spain wanted to ensure that they would have power over whatever he discovered, and this was the way to do it. This was so in the movie as well. Columbus was to take gold back to Spain and to spread the word of God in the discovered land. In August of 1492, Columbus and his adventurers set out to find the New World with three ships, the Nina, the Pinta and the Santa Maria. They reached their destination in October of 1492. The island that they found was full of native people dressed in loincloths and caring speared sticks.
They were very friendly for the time Columbus and his crew were there. The island was great, but what Columbus really wanted was to find the mainland of India. At any rate, they stayed for a while and when a man got sick, Columbus headed home. He took with him some gold from the New World. After a short stay in his homeland, Columbus returned to the New World. Upon reaching the island again, Columbus found something awful. The crew that he had left behind was dead. Columbus did not want to take revenge, but some of the crew did. He managed to hold them off for a while. The explorers built up the land on the island, adding a ringing bell and some buildings. Soon a battle broke out over the deaths of the crew left behind from the first voyage. Spain took control of the island away from Columbus. Of course, he was very upset because he had worked his whole life for this opportunity. Spain had broken their agreement with Columbus. They promised him all sorts of titles and the same for his heirs. He was supposed to become a Don and he was supposed to be able to choose whomever he wanted to run the island. When he chose his brothers, Spain had a problem with his decision. He discovered this New World and got no reward for it. In the movie, it did not seem like a waste for him because his memory of what happened and telling the story to his family reminded him of a happy time in his life. Sure, it would have been great to get what was promised to him by Spain, but the experience of it all was enough for him.
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