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The Voyages of Christopher Columbus
by Armstrong Sperry
from the dust jacket:
Long, long ago the seafaring men of Europe sailed south to Guinea, or east tot he Golden Horn, or sometimes as far north as Iceland, but never into the unknown West. For there lay the Sea of Darkness from which no man had returned.
But to Columbus, the Genoese seaman who had sailed to every port, the waters to the West were a challenge, a path to wealth and glory, a destiny: a short route to the fabulous Indies. With such a vision, Columbus worked for years to win royal support. He wanted ships and crews and money. So mad an enterprise did this seem, however, that even after Queen Isabella of Spain had agreed to supply ships and money for his voyage, Columbus still faced failure because men were too fearful to sail off into unknown space. Who would man his ships.
The whole story of the great voyage of discovery centers on the courage and vision and unquenchable spirit of this man who wouldn't be stopped even though everyone called him mad. Arguing with great men of learning; pleading his case before the King and Queen; winning the friendship of Father Perez, the powerful Pinson brothers, and Don Luis de Santangel; commanding his rough and multitudinous crew; dealing with the savages -- Columbus is here vividly portrayed fighting his way into the destiny that made history.