Christopher Columbus - A Woolworker From Genoa Or Byzantine Prince From Chios?

  • by XpatAthens
  • Wednesday, 14 October 2015
Christopher Columbus - A Woolworker From Genoa Or Byzantine Prince From Chios?
There has been more written about Christopher Columbus than about any person with the exception of Jesus Christ, and yet his past has been shrouded in mystery. We all have been told that he came from Genoa, a city in Italy and sailed for Isabella and Ferdinand, the king and queen of Spain, after many years of trying to convince them that the world was round, a belief that was uncommon despite the fact that Aristotle had said it over a thousand years before.

Most of what we know about Columbus is conjecture and much of his history was written by people who never knew him or had reasons of their own for rewriting or presenting as truth something that was just a theory. The story of his being the son of a woolworker from Genoa for example only came from the fact that there was someone named Columbus from Genoa who was a wool worker and is a legend attributed to Peter Martyr de Anghiera. Go to Genoa and you will see that there are monuments and a show of pride in it being the birthplace of Columbus.

There is a book called, 'A New Theory Clarifying The Identity Of Christoper Columbus: A Byzantine Prince From Chios, Greece' written by Ruth G Durlacher-Wolper, the founder and the director of the New World Museum and the New World Foundation in San Salvador, Bahamas, where Columbus' ships first landed in 1492.

The book is carefully researched and after reading it even if you are not convinced you will certainly be less sure that all you knew before was the truth. For those of you who remember your Byzantine history, you may recall that the Paleologos Dynasty were the Byzantine Emperors who traced their descendants to the Royal House of David and fled to the west after the fall of Constantinople. According to the book, Columbus and his kinsman Colon-the-Younger came to France with the Paleologi and mixed with the royalty of the period, which would make sense. Why would the King and Queen of Spain give him three ships and a lot of money if he was the son of a Genovese woolworker?

Columbus never said he was from Genoa. He said he was from the Republic of Genoa, something much different. The island of Chios was part of the Republic of Genoa. The name Columbus is carved above many doors in the villages of Pirgi and Cimbori and a priest with that last name traces his ancestry on the island back over 600 years. There are also many Genovese families who trace their ancestry back to Chios. Columbus also wrote about the gum-mastic called mastika which comes only from Chios.

The book presents many convincing arguments and in the end summarizes them with 22 facts contributing to the clarification of Columbus' identity. Among the most interesting are:

Columbus' signature "Xro-Ferens" Christophoros is Greek-Latin or Byzantine.

Columbus spelled Chios with a Greek 'X'.

Columbus named Cape Maysi in Cuba using Greek words, Alpha and Omega.

The Colombo family of Genoa were illiterate and the Genovese Christophoro was a woolweaver. For this person to acquire the learning, experience and spirituality that Columbus had that could convince a foreign king and queen to entrust a small navy and a fortune to him doesn't seem probable. Maybe in twentieth century America a poor son of a common garment worker can grow up to become president but in the Europe of the 15th century it is unlikely he could make Captain, much less Admiral in command of a fleet. It is more likely that for Columbus to have received an audience with a king and queen he would have to be royal himself or have some pretty good connections.

Columbus' son Ferdinand wrote that his ancestors have always followed the sea. Unless the Columbo family of Genoa had a long history of being ships tailors or official shearers of sea-sheep then they were not related. In fact even though they were living in Genoa at the time that Ferdinand was writing about his father, they are not mentioned. Nor are they mentioned in the Will of Columbus.

For more on this interesting topic, please visit: GreeceTravel

We've had a difficult time turning up a copy of the book online, but have found a link on Amazon UK. You may also contact the publisher: John Perikos - Kallimassia - Chios 8210 - Greece.