Re: Popular history vs. real history
- From: Weland <giles@xxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Tue, 23 Jun 2009 23:51:37 -0500
On Jun 18, 11:33 pm, Weland <gi...@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Which isn't what either Imipak or I said. We said that it is often said
or believed by the ignoranti that Columbus discovered North America, not
"just" or "only" North America, though most aren't aware that he made
four voyages to the "new world."
I think that idiots say all kinds of crazy things, and replying to
these wild claims should not be a pre-occupation.
Yet, you reply to Innabon.......I guess you, like everyone else, picks
and chooses which idiot's wild claims to reply to. Further, as noted in
my statement above, you misunderstood what was said...so I was replying
School texts are
matter-of-fact on Columbus and I do not recall a single one that
stated that Columbus discovered North America.
Current school texts....as has already been pointed out, this has not
always been the case.
If you want to persist
on this, fine, but I can pile on the stupidities and we would never
get out of this.
I'm not sure what you think I'm persisting on. I'm merely giving you
some historical context about claims that in the not too distant were
made, were in fact part of everyone in NA cultural knowledge. The
change has been radical in the last 35 years, esp. the last 20. It is
this viewpoint that imipak called "popular history" and contrasted to
"real history". I'm not at all sure what you're problem is, except you
don't seem to know what was presented as history about 30 years and more
Portugese, even assuming the dates that you have provided, they
occured 10 years after Columbus and 5 years after the landing of John
Cabot in Newfoundland (for the British in 1497).
Not quite. I said the Anglo-Portuguese Syndicate. Their first
co-sponsored voyage occurred just before Columbus' fourth voyage, the
one where he actually landed on the continent rather than the islands.
The Portugese are believed to have been in Newfoundland fishing since
Who "believes" this? What's the documentation?
The Forgotten Portuguese by Manuel Mira, 1998
The World of Columbus James McGovern
The True Antilles: Newfoundland and Nova Scotia Manuel Luciano da
Silva, Nelson D. Martins
The Medieval Expansion of Europe J. R. S. Phillips
The Portuguese Making of America Manuel Mira
These are a few.
I seriously doubt
that if Portuguese fishermen had seen a large land mass, that nobody
would have even attempted anything more adventurous than "hidding the
Adventure had nothing to do with it. Money did. They found fishing
grounds where they could make good money when fishing grounds in and
around the Iberian penninsula were being fished out. Share that
information widely, and soon everyone is fishing in your sweet spot and
that means less for you. Fishermen act the same way today.
I think you mean Giovanni Caboto, sailing for the British (Henry VII)
who *may* have hit somewhere on Newfoundland or Cape Breton, no one is
sure in spite of the 'official" story that he landed on Cape Bonavista.
Giovanni Gaboto or John Cabot, whatever!!! Well, his official landing
day in North America is 1497. We can argue on the exact location of
his landing but this does not change much
His alleged and believed landing in North America is 1497.
I. E. he may not have actually walked on the continent at all, hence
my referencing the Anglo-Portuguese joint expedition which without doubt
walked on the North American continent.
"Walked on the continent"???? Que?
Look the words up in the dictionary.
I think that the discoveries in L'anse aux Meadows are debatable as
they do not really represent a permanent settlement and just bear
resemblance with Norse settlements in Greenland.
I would not rate
them as definitive. I know that it is widely believed. In any case,
I do not think that these findings confirm the sagas. Actually, they
do not. The Vinland of the sagas is nothing like L'anse aux Meadows.
Don't go all Cinnabon on us. The structures not only "resemble" Norse
buildings in Greenland, Iceland, Norway etc, but they also contain
evidence of iron working (which the Native Americans at the time did not
have), a boat repair area with rivets and materials for boats, (the
small boats of the natives were either dugouts or skins, and didn't
contain iron), as well as common everyday items that match finds found
at other Norse sites elsewhere. There are literally hundreds of such
artifacts. It seems to me to take a special kind of pleading to claim
that the discoveries are debatable.
Anyway, I said that this is widely accepted.
I am not venturing my own opinion,
But you did. As noted above in the cite you stated quite explicitly
that you don't think the finds at L'anse aux Meadows are definitive, are
debatable, and don't confirm the sagas. If that isn't venturing your
opinion, what is?
I have no direct experience with the finds or the site.
Then you have no basis on which to claim that the Norse weren't in North
America before Columbus' voyage or that the site isn't definitive proof
of it, is debatable, and doesn't in some way confirm the sagas, do you?
In any case, accepting the case that the Norse were in North America
has no affect on the discoveries of Columbus.
Immaterial. Imipak was noting the difference between popular history as
it was once taught (Columbus discovered (North)America) vs. "real"
history. You took issue with that. The discussion is not and has not
been about the impact of any of the European "discoveries".
As for the sagas, I didn't say it was "Vinland." If you read the sagas
in question you'll find that they visited many places, and named many,
only one of which is called Vinland. You'll also discover that they
often wintered in one place north of Vinland etc and then continued
explorations in better weather. The presence of butternuts at L'anse
confirms this: butternuts didn't grow that far north, and so would have
had to have been brought north by someone. The most likely explanation
is that the site was a base, winter camp, whether by voyagers in the
sagas, or by other groups not attested in literary sources.
Regarding butternuts and other elements of Vinland. Make no
extrapolations from the climate today.
What would make you think that I have? What makes you think we aren't
aware of this? Do you have evidence that butternuts actually did grow
that far north at any time in human history? If not, what is the basis
of the objection beyond mere contrariness?
In fact, the world is still
much cooler than it was during the time of this Norse foray in North
America. This is something most easily forget.
Temperature is less important here than length of the growing season and
the spread of the plant species. There's simply no evidence whatsoever
that butternuts grew that far north even at the height of the medieval
If an Irish ever made it to North America and back, I really doubt
that this would have remained a closely guarded secret and that nobody
else would have attempted to repeat the journey.
Doubt all you wish. However, if such a voyage was undertaken it wasn't
for the sake of discovery, but rather, like the Brendan voyage, a monk
or few casting themselves on the waves and letting "god" take them where
he will. We know that many places, including possibly Iceland itself,
were discovered by Irish in such a way, the purpose of the monks being
to exile themselves to seek and serve God, not to draw a lot of
attention to where they were going and why...not that they knew where
they were going. So, if an Irishman made it to NA and back, it isn't
likely at all that it was noised abroad loudly....not that they'd know
what they found or why it might be important.
Well, even if we assume this mythical account to be true, it was
As with your objection above, this too is immaterial.
It really does not matter what one
discovers unless somebody verifies this discovery. One can tell
whatever wild stories one chooses, the proof is in the pudding. If
others had followed Brendan and landed in America, then this would
have been something more than an Irish folk tale.
Perhaps, but again not the point that imipak raised or to which you
I do not know who said those tall tales, but they were not taught at
Perhaps not for you, but in an early age, they were, and even now I
still encounter college freshman who were taught this. ...
Stupidity knows no bounds
Indeed, esp those who state opinions without access to the actual finds,
artifacts, and other evidences...right?
In any case, in the discussion above: the point is that it was about a
national or continental mythology and until the last half century or so
there was little reason to question it. Call it stupid if it makes you
feel superior, but it was the popular history of the day....and if you
look at the thread title you'll discover to your wonder that its
"Popular history vs. real history".
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