The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #38150   Message #536017
Posted By: Rollo
27-Aug-01 - 08:27 AM
Thread Name: BS: Early Visitors to North America
Subject: RE: BS: Early Visitors to North America
"The Vikings cannot lay firm claim to discovery, because the nature of what they had stumbled on was never understood by them, nor was it communicated within the Pan-European Civilization of the time."

Sure it was communticated within the pan-european civilisation of the time. Greenland was not so far away from europe as you would imagine. There was boat travel via island, the last known vessel going back to island in the year of 1410, there was a bishop's chair, and even in the year of 1492 Pope Alexander II invested a new bishop of gardar, a monk matthias, who was sent to visit the island personally (allthough he probably didn't). Even after the year of 1410 ther must have been boat travel between europe and greenland, for certain clothing styles found their way from burgundy to greenland, and the danish-norse crown protested in england against illegal travel (only norse ships were allowed to visit the norse territoris of faroer, island and greenland). Were these ships basque fishermen, english merchant-adventurers?

But these facts allow the conclusion that the viking settlement on greenland might have been the place where basque sailors heard about the fishing grounds of newfoundland.

Well, and about the nature of their discovery: the vikings may not have recogniced they had found a new continent. But Columbus didn't, either. He thought he had found the eastern coasts of asia.