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Christopher Columbus

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Christopher Columbus lived from 1451 to 1506. He was a navigator, colonizer and explorer whose voyages across the Atlantic Ocean brought him renown popularity. His four voyages resulted in European awareness of the American continents and the Western Hemisphere.

Columbus's first voyage in 1492 came at a time of growing national imperalism and economic competition between developing nations. Nation-states were seeking wealth through the establishment of trade route and colonies. Under these circumstances, Columbus proposed his voyage to Isabella I of Castile and estimated the discovery of great wealth. He planned a westward route from Iberia to the Indies, which he hoped would be shorter than the overland trade route through Arabia. This would permit the development of a spice trade for Spain. 

The anniversary of his 1492 voyage to the Americas is celebrated as Columbus Day on October 12. The United States observes this holiday on the second Monday of October.



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