Magazine article International Wildlife

The Discovery of Cuba

Magazine article International Wildlife

The Discovery of Cuba

Article excerpt

Saturday, 27 October 1492 I hauled up the anchor at sunrise and departed for Cuba, which I am told is magnificent, with gold and pearls. I am now certain that Cuba is the Indian name for Japan. I made 6 knots from sunrise until 1 o'clock in the afternoon, to the SSW. I added another 21 miles before nightfall on the same course, for a total of 51 miles. Just before sunset I saw land, but it rained so hard that we had to beat about all this night.

Sunday, 28 October 1492 At sunrise I approached the coast and entered a very beautiful river, which was free from dangerous shoals and other obstructions. The water all along this coast is very deep and clear right to the shore. The mouth of the river I entered is 12 fathoms deep and quite wide enough to beat about in... I have never seen anything so beautiful. The country around the river is full of trees, beautiful and green and different from ours, each with flowers and its won kind of fruit. There are many birds of all sizes that sing very sweetly, and there are many palms different from those in Guinea or Spain. Some are of medium height without any bark at the base, and the leaves are very large. The Indians cover their houses with these leaves. …

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