Friday Review » History & Culture

Updated: October 15, 2009 15:54 IST

Christopher Columbus' writings prove he was Spanish

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A statue of Christopher Columbus
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A statue of Christopher Columbus

The mystery over Christopher Columbus’s true origins appears to be finally solved after a thorough investigation of his writings allegedly proved that he hailed from Spain.

Much research has been put into determining the true nationality of the explorer credited with finding the Americas.

Italy, France, Portugal, Greece, Catalonia, Corsica, Poland and even Scotland have all previously laid their claim on the Great Navigator as their own since his death in 1506, reports The Telegraph.

But a study of the language used in Columbus’ official records and letters reportedly establish that he came from the Kingdom of Aragon and his mother tongue was Catalan.

Estelle Irizarry, a linguistic professor at Georgetown University in Washington, published the findings in a new book The DNA of the writings of Columbus.

The professor said: “He didn’t express him correctly in any written language. His Spanish was notoriously incorrect yet at the same time efficient, poetic and eloquent.” But the claim may have a hard time in finding a place for itself amongst many other existing theories, including one that Columbus may have adopted his surname later in life to disguise his true origins.

When quizzed about his origins, Columbus himself used to say: “Vine de nada” - “I came from nothing”.

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