500 Years Ago Today Magellan and Elcano Set Sail to Conquer the World

August 10, 2019 - General
Portrait of Ferdinand Magellan and his ship Trinidad on postage stamp

On August 10, 1519, King Charles of Spain watched naval officers Ferdinand Magellan and Juan Sebastián Elcano set sail to the ‘Spice Islands’, now the Maluku Islands in Indonesia. 239 brave men boarded five ships, and to evade the Portuguese fleet, Magellan first sailed south and west from Seville. Almost exactly three years after their departure, on September 6, 1522, Elcano and just 18 men returned to Spain in one ship having navigated the entire planet.

To celebrate this monumental achievement Seville is holding over 70 events during 2019-2022 which, according to Lonely Planet, range from “history and biodiversity conferences, shipbuilding events, expositions on spices and maps, film screenings, and musical performances.” The main attraction will be staged at the ‘Archivo de Indias’ between September 2019 and February 2020 and is called “El Viaje Mas Largo: La Primera Vuelta al Mundo” (The Longest Journey: The First Round the World Voyage).

According to the event website, this major exhibition will “promote the human aspect and the challenges faced by 16th century sailors on their long ocean voyage.”

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Source: origins

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