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date: 30 May 2024

Cabot, John, the Anglicized form of Caboto, Giovanni 

Source:
The Oxford Companion to Ships and the Sea
Author(s):
 Dear Dear, Peter KempPeter Kemp

(c.1450–98),Italian navigator. Very little is known of his early life but it is believed that he was born in Genoa and as a boy went to Venice where he was naturalized as a Venetian citizen. He appears to have commanded a merchant ship which traded to the Levant and on one of these voyages is said to have visited Mecca where he was amazed by the market there in spices, silk, and jewels. Being told that they came overland by caravan from Asia, and knowing that the earth was a sphere, he was seized with the idea that it would be quicker to bring them to Europe by sea if he could reach Cathay and Cipangu, the names by which China and Japan were known to Europeans in the 15th–17th centuries, by crossing the western ocean. Unable to convince the European courts to the extent of equipping an expedition, Cabot brought his family to London in ... ...

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