Happy Columbus Day!
“They continued on their course until two in the morning, when a gun from the Pinta gave the joyful signal of land . . .
“It was on Friday morning, the 12th of October, that Columbus first beheld the new world. As the day dawned he saw before him a level island several leagues in extent and covered with trees like a continual orchard. Though apparently uncultivated it was populous, for the inhabitants were seen issuing from all parts of the woods and running to the shore . . . Columbus made signal for the ships to cast anchor, and the boats to be manned and armed. He entered his own boat, richly attired in scarlet, and holding the royal standard; whilst Martin Alonzo Pinzon, and Vincent Yanez his brother, put off in company in their boats….
“As he approached the shore, Columbus, who was disposed for all kinds of agreeable impressions, was delighted with the purity and suavity of the atmosphere; the crystal transparency of the sea, and the extraordinary beauty of the vegetation . . . On landing he threw himself on his knees, kissed the earth, and returned thanks to God with tears of joy….”— Washington Irving,
Life and Voyages of Christopher Columbus (1828)
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