Amerigo Vespucci

America was named after Amerigo Vespucci, a Florentine navigator and explorer who played a prominent role in exploring the New World.


In 1505, Vespucci, who was born and raised in Italy, became a naturalize citizen of Spain. Three years later, he was awarded the office of piloto mayor, or master navigator, of Spain. In this Role, Vespucci's job was to recruit and train other navigators, as well as to gather data on the continued New World exploration. Vespucci held the position for the remainder of his life.