Monday, October 12, 2015

Celebrate Columbus Day with Cosimo Classics

More than 500 years ago, Christopher Columbus made his first expedition to North America and discovered The New World. Today, we celebrate that day by highlighting some classic titles!

Inspired by the then-recent unearthing of original documents and letters of Christopher Columbus, the American writer Washington Irving set about, in the 1820s, to create the first unlimited and complete account of the great explorer and his journeys. This is that account, sweeping in its scope, as intimate as a novel, as thrilling as a grand adventure story. Originally written in two volumes but presented here in a combined edition, The Life and Voyages of Christopher Columbus tells of Columbus' three journeys to the New World, shipwrecks and mutinies, encounters with natives, and his establishment of military outposts in the Americas. With a dedication to historical accuracy combined with a flair for engaging storytelling, Irving bestows upon us one of the classic works of history of the Age of Exploration. 

As a follow-up to his History of Columbus, this 1831 work by Washington Irving details the voyages of the men who accompanied Columbus and followed in his wake, fulfilling his dream of further exploring the land he had encountered. The dashing tales of Alonzo de Ojeda, Vincente Pinzon, Diego de Nicuesa, and Vasco Núñez de Balboa are presented here for readers as both historical records and adventurous entertainment. History buffs will be delighted to learn about the lives of these important explorers.

Life of Columbus by Arthur Helps

The Life of Columbus has been called the cornerstone of the history of the American continent. The first issue of this edition, which appeared in 1910, vividly recreates the moral and intellectual atmosphere of Columbus's world. A lasting biography of thoughtfulness and scope, it encompasses Columbus's formative years including his life in Spain and a fascinating account of his earliest voyages of discovery. In addition, Sir Arthur Helps examines Columbus's role as the courageous "Discoverer of America" in light of his devoted and unwavering support of the Catholic Church in Spain and its flourishing influence in the Americas.

"In fourteen hundred ninety-two
Columbus sailed the ocean blue.

He had three ships and left from Spain;
He sailed through sunshine, wind and rain.

He sailed by night; he sailed by day;
He used the stars to find his way."

Happy Columbus Day!

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