Did the Vikings discover America?

Did the Vikings discover America?

Christopher Columbus has been taking the glory of having been the discoverer of the New World for centuries. However, there is irrefutable evidence that the Vikings arrived in America in the 10th century, some 500 years before.

So, if the Vikings first arrived in America, before Christopher Columbus, why are they not considered the discoverers of the American continent?

Christopher Columbus in America

The concept of "discovering"

The word "discover" comes to mean "find something that was ignored or hidden," but also "uncovers what was covered or covered." In other words, it is not only a matter of finding something but of making it known, of making it stop being hidden.

For that reason, the Castilian expedition commanded by Columbus is considered the discovery of America. Unlike the Vikings, who soon abandoned their expeditions to the New World and kept their findings to themselves, the Spanish established regular and stable contact. They put the American continent in contact with the rest of the world, forever changing the maps.

Soon the Portuguese, French, English, Dutch, etc. would arrive. to colonize America. Even the Russians crossed the Bering Strait from the west to have their own colony in Alaska.

Viking trips to America

This does not take away the merit of Viking expeditions in American territory. Especially considering that there were 500 years before the crossing of Christopher Columbus. The audacity and skill of the northern men in the handling of Viking ships led them to know territories thousands of kilometers from their homes.

The Vikings not only set foot on American land in their expeditions but also established settlements. Under the command of Leif Erikson, son of Eric the Red, they founded the Vinlandia colony.

 

 


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