Straits: Beyond the Myth of Magellan
When many people learned of Magellan, they learned he was part of the crew that circumnavigated the world for the first time in the 1500s and discovered the strait that now bears his name, but many people do not know the era he grew up in, what drove him on the voyage, and what was he really after. This book helps to put Magellan in his proper place.
He did not initially set out to go around the world. Similar to Columbus, he wanted to find a way to the Spice Islands of southeast Asia that was quicker and also prove the islands belonged to Spain and not Portugal. There is some speculation that he was initially after what is now the Philippines—where he would die in a local dynastic struggle—though that is speculation.
Europe was on the cusp of becoming an economic power and many people wanted to get in the game before all the riches were taken, with Magellan being one of those who felt his station demanded respect and money. Readers will learn a lot not only about the man, but also what drove the people who backed such projects.
|Publisher||University of California Press|
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