Amerigo Vespucci

Kendall Loudon

Background

Amerigo Vespucci was born in Florence, Italy. He was educated by his uncle who was a friar. Vespucci started as a merchant and then was hired by a clerk at the house of Medici. The Medici family made Amerigo an agent so he can look into the Medici branch office in Spain. When the Crown of Castile released Christopher Columbus they began handing out licenses to navigators for ships and Vespucci got a license and satisfied the need for ships.

Why Famous?

Vespucci made two voyages to the Americas and was appointed the position of chief of navigation of Spain. Between 1499 and 1502 he explored South America and discovered that the South American coast extended much farther than previously thought. During that expedition they were trying to the find the tip of South America, but they never got to it. Instead Amerigo found the mouth of the Amazon River. Amerigo Vespucci was a very important role in the Age of Exploration. Whenever we say "America" thank him because he gave it the name.

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