Overview

Vasco Núñez de Balboa

(1475—1519) Spanish explorer

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Darien

Overview page. Subjects: British History.

A sparsely populated province of eastern Panama, but originally designating the whole of the Isthmus of Panama; famously mentioned by Keats in his reference to ‘stout Cortes…Silent upon a...

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exploration

Overview page. Subjects: History by Period.

The investigation of undiscovered territories. The urge to travel is as old as humanity, with the first humans probably spreading out from Africa, and possibly Asia, across the globe. The...

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Ferdinand Magellan

Overview page. Subjects: Maritime History.

(c.1480–1521),

Portuguese navigator. He was born at Villa de Sabrosa in Trás-os-Montes and was the inspirer and commander of the first known expedition to circumnavigate the globe....

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Francisco Pizarro

Overview page. Subjects: Early Modern History (1500 to 1700).

(c. 1478–1541)

Spanish conquistador. In 1531 he set out from Panama to conquer the Inca empire in Peru. Crossing the mountains, he defeated the Incas and in 1533 executed their...

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Gaspar de Espinosa

Overview page. Subjects: Early Modern History (1500 to 1700).

(d. 1537),

Spanish conquistador, born in Medina del Campo. He became known as ‘el licenciado Espinosa’, which may imply that he had been a student of law. He travelled to ...

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Hernán Cortés

Overview page. Subjects: Early Modern History (1500 to 1700).

(1485–1547),

Spanish conquistador of Mexico, born into an impoverished noble family in Medellín (Extremadura) and educated in law at Salamanca. He ran away to Hispaniola in 1504...

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Panama

Overview page. Subjects: World History.

A tropical country occupying the narrow isthmus linking Central and South America, bounded by Costa Rica to the west and Colombia to the east.

Physical.

Along the length...

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Pedrarias Dávila

Overview page. Subjects: Early Modern History (1500 to 1700).

(c.1440–1530),

Spanish conquistador who fought as a young man in the final stages of the reconquista. In 1514 he was appointed successor to Balboa as governor of Darién, and three...

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Pizarro, Francisco, Gonzalo Pizarro, and Hernando

Overview page. Subjects: World History.

Spanish explorers and conquistadores. The Pizarro brothers—conquerors of Inca Peru—were born in Trujillo, a small city in the heart of Extremadura, a province that also was the birthplace...

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South Seas

Overview page. Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945) — Maritime History.

The old term for the Pacific Ocean. It was given this name by Vasco Nuñez de Balboa in 1513 when, after sighting the ocean from the top of a mountain range, he reached the coast near Panama...

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