Juan Sebastián Elcano

Juan Sebastián Elcano[1] (sometimes misspelled del Cano;[1] c.1486–4 August 1526) was a Spanish explorer of Basque origin[2][3][4] who completed the first circumnavigation of the Earth. After Magellan's death in the Philippines, Elcano took command of the carrack Victoria from the Moluccas to Sanlúcar de Barrameda in Spain.

Juan Sebastián Elcano
Las Glorias Nacionales, 1852 "Juan Sebastian Elcano". (4013953698)
Engraving of Elcano
Juan Sebastián Elcano

c. 1486
DiedAugust 4, 1526 (aged 39–40)
Cause of deathMalnutrition
NationalityBasque (Crown of Castile)
Occupationexplorer, navigator and mariner
Known forfirst circumnavigation of the earth
Partner(s)María Hernández Dernialde
ChildrenDomingo Elcano III
Parent(s)Domingo Sebastián Elcano I, and Catalina del Puerto
RelativesDomingo Elcano II, Martín Pérez Elcano and Antón Martín Elcano
Firma Elcano

Early life

Elcano was born in around 1486 to Domingo Sebastián Elcano and Catalina del Puerto. He had three brothers: Domingo Elcano, a Catholic priest, Martín Pérez Elcano, and Antón Martín Elcano.

Military life

Elcano fought in the Italian Wars under the command of Gonzalo Fernández de Córdoba in Italy, and in 1509 he joined the Spanish expedition organized by Cardinal Francisco Jiménez de Cisneros against Algiers.

Merchant shipping

Elcano settled in Seville and became a merchant ship captain. After breaking Castilian laws by surrendering a ship to Genoan bankers in repayment of a debt, he sought a pardon from the emperor Charles V, by signing on as a subordinate officer for the Magellan expedition to the East Indies.

Voyage of circumnavigation

Magellan's voyage EN
The Magellan expedition
Nao Victoria, a replica of Elcano's ship, in Punta Arenas

Elcano served as a naval commander of the emperor Charles V, and took part in the expedition to the Philippines. In 1519, this 241-man expedition set sail with five ships, Trinidad, Concepción, San Antonio, Santiago, and Victoria. Elcano participated in a fierce mutiny against Magellan before the convoy discovered the passage through South America, the Strait of Magellan. He was spared by Magellan and after five months of hard labour in chains was made captain of the galleon.[5] Santiago was later destroyed in a storm. The fleet sailed across the Atlantic Ocean to the eastern coast of Brazil and into Puerto San Julián in Argentina. Several months later they discovered a passage now known as the Strait of Magellan located in the southern tip of South America and sailed through the strait. The crew of San Antonio mutinied and returned to Spain. On 28 November 1520, three ships set sail for the Pacific Ocean and about 19 men died before they reached Guam on 6 March 1521. Conflicts with the nearby island of Rota prevented Magellan and Elcano from resupplying their ships with food and water. They eventually gathered enough supplies and continued their journey to the Philippines and remained there for several weeks. Close relationships developed between the Spaniards and the islanders. They took part in converting the Cebuano tribes to Christianity and became involved in tribal warfare between rival Filipino groups in Mactan Island.

Elkano Spice Islands
Route of the Spanish expedition through the Spice Islands. The red cross shows the location of Mactan Island in the Philippines where Magellan was killed in 1521.

On 27 April 1521, Magellan was killed and the Spaniards defeated by natives in the Battle of Mactan in the Philippines. The surviving members of the expedition could not decide who should succeed Magellan. The men finally voted on a joint command with the leadership divided between Duarte Barbosa and João Serrão. Within four days these two were also dead. They were killed after being betrayed at a feast at the hands of Rajah Humabon. The mission was now teetering on disaster and João Lopes de Carvalho took command of the fleet and led it on a meandering journey through the Philippine archipelago.

During the six-month listless journey after Magellan died, and before reaching the Moluccas, Elcano's stature grew as the men became disillusioned with the weak leadership of Carvalho. The two ships, Victoria and Trinidad finally reached their destination, the Moluccas, on 6 November. They rested and re-supplied in this haven, and filled their holds with the precious cargo of cloves and nutmeg. On 18 December, the ships were ready to leave. Trinidad sprang a leak, and was unable to be repaired. Carvalho stayed with the ship along with 52 others hoping to return later.[6]

Victoria, commanded by Elcano along with 17 other European survivors of the 240 man expedition and 4 (survivors out of 13) Timorese Asians continued its westward voyage to Spain crossing the Indian and Atlantic Oceans. They eventually reached Sanlúcar de Barrameda on 6 September 1522.[7]

Antonio Pigafetta, an Italian scholar, was a crew member of the Magellan and Elcano expedition. He wrote several documents about the events of the expedition. According to Pigafetta the voyage covered 14,460 leagues—about 81,449 kilometres (50,610 mi).


Elcano's coat of arms

Emperor Charles V granted Elcano an augmentation of his coat of arms featuring a world globe with the words Primus circumdedisti me (Latin: "You first encircled me")[8] and an annual pension. His family were given rule over the Marquisate of Buglas in Negros Island, Philippines.

Loaísa expedition

In 1525, Elcano returned to sea, and became a member of the Loaísa expedition. He was appointed leader along with García Jofre de Loaísa as captains, who commanded seven ships and sent to claim the East Indies for King Charles I of Spain. Both Elcano and Loaísa and many other sailors died of malnutrition in the Pacific Ocean, but the survivors reached their destination and a few of them managed to return to Spain.

Family life

Elcano never married but he had a son by María Hernández Dernialde named Domingo Elcano, whom he legitimized in his last will and testament.

See also


  1. ^ a b Elcano y no Cano
  2. ^ Totoricagüena, Gloria Pilar (2005). Basque Diaspora: Migration And Transnational Identity. University of Nevada Press. p. 132. ISBN 9781877802454. Retrieved 8 March 2013.
  3. ^ Facaros, Dana; Pauls, Michael (2 September 2008). Cadogan Guide Bilbao & the Basque Lands. New Holland Publishers. p. 177. ISBN 978-1-86011-400-7. Retrieved 7 January 2013.
  4. ^ Salmoral, Manuel Lucena (1982). Historia general de España y América: hasta fines del siglo XVI. El descubrimiento y la fundación de los reinos ultramarinos. Ediciones Rialp. p. 324. ISBN 978-84-321-2102-9. Retrieved 7 January 2013.
  5. ^ Murphy, Patrick J.; Coye, Ray W. (2013). Mutiny and Its Bounty: Leadership Lessons from the Age of Discovery. Yale University Press. ISBN 9780300170283.
  6. ^ Humble, Richard (1978). The Seafarers—The Explorers. Alexandria, Virginia: Time-Life Books.
  7. ^ Kattan-Ibarra, Juan (1995). Perspectivas Culturales de España. p. 71.
  8. ^ Nobiliario de conquistadores de Indias. Madrid: Sociedad de Bibliófilos Españoles. 1892. p. 57.

External links

1521 in science

The year 1521 in science and technology included many events, some of which are listed here.

1522 in science

The year 1522 in science and technology included a number of events, some of which are listed here.

Alonso de Salazar

Toribio Alonso de Salazar, born in Biscay, was a Spanish navigator of Basque origin, who discovered the Marshall Islands on August 21, 1526.

De Salazar was part of the Fray García Jofre de Loaísa's expedition from Spain to the Spice Islands in 1525, the second in history to cross the Pacific Ocean, after the Magalhães-Elcano circumnavigation of the globe. De Salazar took command of Santa Maria de la Victoria, the last of seven ships to survive the voyage, after the deaths of Loaísa and Juan Sebastián Elcano. He sighted the Bokak Atoll in the Marshall Islands en route to Guam, the Philippine Islands and finally the Moluccas. After one month of holding the command, he also died of scurvy shortly after having left Guam on 5 September 1526 and was succeeded by Martín Íñiguez de Zarquizano.

Andrés de Urdaneta

Friar Andrés de Urdaneta, OSA, (November 30, 1498 – June 3, 1568) was a Spanish Basque circumnavigator, explorer and Augustinian friar. As a navigator he achieved in 1536 the "second" world circumnavigation (after the first one led by Ferdinand Magellan and Juan Sebastián Elcano and their crew in 1522). Urdaneta discovered and plotted a path across the Pacific from the Philippines to Acapulco in the Viceroyalty of New Spain (present day Mexico) used by the Manila galleons, which came to be known as "Urdaneta's route". He was considered as "protector of the Indians" for his treatment of the Filipino natives; also Cebu and the Philippines' first prelate.

Antonio Pigafetta

Antonio Pigafetta (Italian: [anˈtɔːnjo piɡaˈfetta]; c. 1491 – c. 1531) was an Italian scholar and explorer from the Republic of Venice. He joined the expedition to the Spice Islands led by explorer Ferdinand Magellan under the flag of King Charles I of Spain and, after Magellan's death in the Philippines, the subsequent voyage around the world. During the expedition, he served as Magellan's assistant and kept an accurate journal which later assisted him in translating the Cebuano language. It is the first recorded document concerning the language.

Pigafetta was one of the 18 men who returned to Spain in 1522, under the command of Juan Sebastián Elcano, out of the approximately 240 who set out three years earlier. These men completed the first circumnavigation of the world. Pigafetta's surviving journal is the source for much of what is known about Magellan and Elcano's voyage.

At least one warship of the Italian Navy, a destroyer of the Navigatori class, was named after him in 1931.

Desire (ship)

The Desire was the 120 ton flagship Thomas Cavendish built for his highly successful 1586-1588 circumnavigation of the globe. The Desire was only the third ship to circumnavigate the globe after the Victoria of Ferdinand Magellan (journey completed by Juan Sebastián Elcano) and the Golden Hind of Francis Drake. After this expedition Cavendish was knighted by Queen Elizabeth I of England who was invited to a dinner aboard the Desire.

The ship was later captained by John Davis on the second, unsuccessful, Cavendish expedition. On that same expedition it was the ship he captained when he probably discovered the Falkland Islands. Davis brought the ship back, in a wretched state, to Berehaven in Ireland on 14 June 1593. Only Davis and fifteen crewmen survived out of an original 76 on the ship.

Port Desire in Patagonia was named by Cavendish in 1586 after his ship and later became known by the Spanish translation of the name, Puerto Deseado.

Before his death, which occurred on the voyage home from the ill-fated second expedition, Cavendish made his will, bequeathing the Desire to Sir George Carey

Enrique of Malacca

Enrique of Malacca (Spanish: Enrique de Malaca; Portuguese: Henrique de Malaca; Malay: Panglima Awang), was acquired as a slave in Melaka by the Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan, who subsequently took him on the first (Spanish) circumnavigation of the world in 1519- 22. Italian historian Antonio Pigafetta, who wrote the most comprehensive account of Magellan's voyage, named him "Henrique" (which was Hispanicised as Enrique in official Spanish documents). According to biographer-philosopher Stefan Zweig, he is the first person to circumnavigate the world. His name appears as "enrique", which is Portuguese. His name appears only in Pigafetta's account, in Magellan's Last Will, and in official documents at the Casa de Contratación de las Indias of the Magellan expedition to the Philippines.

As set out in Magellan's document Last Will, Magellan acquired Enrique as a slave at Malacca, most probably at the early stages of the siege by the Portuguese in 1511, at age 14 years. Though Maggellan's will calls him "a native of Malacca", the chronicler of the circumnavigation, Pigafetta, states that he was a native of Sumatra -- equally possible given the polyglot migrant population of Melaka

Originally named Awang, he was called Henrique by the Portuguese. Eyewitness documents of Antonio Pigafetta, Ginés de Mafra, the Genoese pilot, Antonio de Herrera y Tordesillas, Juan Sebastián Elcano, and Bartolomé de las Casas, and secondary sources such as João de Barros and Francisco López de Gómara, refer to him as a slave.

Ferdinand Magellan

Ferdinand Magellan ( or ; Portuguese: Fernão de Magalhães, IPA: [fɨɾˈnɐ̃w dɨ mɐɣɐˈʎɐ̃jʃ]; Spanish: Fernando de Magallanes, IPA: [feɾˈnando ðe maɣaˈʎanes]; c. 1480 – 27 April 1521) was a Portuguese explorer who organised the Spanish expedition to the East Indies from 1519 to 1522, resulting in the first circumnavigation of the Earth, completed by Juan Sebastián Elcano.

Born into a family of the Portuguese nobility in around 1480, Magellan became a skilled sailor and naval officer and was eventually selected by King Charles I of Spain to search for a westward route to the Maluku Islands (the "Spice Islands"). Commanding a fleet of five vessels, he headed south through the Atlantic Ocean to Patagonia, passing through the Strait of Magellan into a body of water he named the "peaceful sea" (the modern Pacific Ocean). Despite a series of storms and mutinies, the expedition reached the Spice Islands in 1521 and returned home via the Indian Ocean to complete the first circuit of the globe. Magellan did not complete the entire voyage, as he was killed during the Battle of Mactan in the Philippines in 1521. His gift, the Santo Niño de Cebú image, remains one of his legacies during his arrival.Magellan had already reached the Malay Archipelago in Southeast Asia on previous voyages traveling east (from 1505 to 1511–1512). By visiting this area again but now travelling west, Magellan achieved a nearly complete personal circumnavigation of the globe for the first time in history.The Magellanic penguin is named after him, as he was the first European to note it. Magellan's navigational skills have also been acknowledged in the naming of objects associated with the stars, including the Magellanic Clouds, now known to be two nearby dwarf galaxies; the twin lunar craters of Magelhaens and Magelhaens A; and the Martian crater of Magelhaens.

Getaria, Gipuzkoa

Getaria is a coastal town located in the province of Gipuzkoa, in the autonomous community of Basque Country, in the North of Spain. This coastal village is located on the Urola Coast, with Zarautz to the east and Zumaia to the west.

Getaria is known for being Juan Sebastián Elcano’s hometown, a seaman well-known for being the first man to circumnavigate the earth. He was captain of the Nao Victoria, the one ship in Magellan's ill-fated fleet which completed the voyage.

Today, Getaria is also famous for its restaurants serving grilled fish and a white wine with a protected designation of origin which is cultivated in the surroundings of this coastal town and takes the name of Getariako Txakolina. Moreover, the Cristobal Balenciaga Museum is also located in this village.

Thus, its most famous sons are Juan Sebastián Elcano, captain of the Nao Victoria, Admiral Miguel de Oquendo, who commanded the Guipúzcoa Squadron of the Spanish Armada, the explorer Domingo de Bonechea, and the couturier Cristóbal Balenciaga Eizaguirre.

In May 2012, a two-man team from Getaria won Google's "Model Your Town" competition by creating a complete 3D representation of their hometown.

Juan Vespucio

Juan Vespucio (c. 1460 – after 1524) was an Italian-Spanish geographer, cartographer and cosmographer. He was born in Florence in around 1460. With his uncle Americo, he moved to Seville in Spain, where he was employed as a cartographer and cosmographer. In 1524, he was called upon as an expert to attend a board meeting between representatives of Spain and Portugal at the Old Town Hall in Badajoz to clarify the status of their territorial arrangements, attended by the likes of Hernando Colón, Sebastián Caboto, Juan Sebastián Elcano, Diego Ribeiro and Esteban Gómez.

List of Renaissance figures

This is a list of notable people associated with the Renaissance.

List of active Spanish Navy ships

This is a list of active Spanish Navy ships, complete and correct as of December 2016. There are approximately 77 vessels in the Navy, including minor auxiliary vessels. A breakdown includes; one amphibious assault ship (also used as an aircraft carrier), two amphibious transport docks, 11 frigates, three submarines, six mine countermeasure vessels, 22 patrol vessels and a number of auxiliary ships. The total displacement of the Spanish Navy is approximately 225,000 tonnes.

Luis García Sainz

Luis García Sáinz (Saragossa, 1894-Saragossa, March 11, 1965) was a pioneer of physical geography in Spain. He was the first professor in Geography en la University of Valencia and secretary at the Instituto Juan Sebastián Elcano. His final position was professor at the University of Barcelona.

Maximilianus Transylvanus

Maximilianus Transylvanus (Transilvanus, Transylvanianus), also Maximilianus of Transylvania and Maximilian (Maximiliaen) von Sevenborgen (c. 1490 – c. 1538), was a sixteenth-century author based in Flanders who wrote the earliest account published on Magellan and Elcano's first circumnavigation of the world (1519–22). Written after he interviewed the survivors of the Victoria, and being a relative of sponsor Christopher de Haro, his account De Moluccis Insulis is a main source about the expedition along with that of Antonio Pigafetta.

In 1520, Transylvanus had published, at Augsburg, a work in Latin that describes the reception that nominated Charles I, King of Spain, as Holy Roman Emperor in 1519 at Molins de Rei, in Spain. This is the Legatio ad sacratissimum ac invictum Caesarem divum Carolum .... ab reverendissimis et illustrissimis principibus ... qua functus est ...Federicus comes palatinus in Molendino regio vlt. Novembris Anno MDXIX (Augsburg: Sigismund Grimm und Marx Wirsung, 1520). At this point, Maximilianus seems to have already been serving as personal secretary to Charles V, as well as accompanying the monarch on his travels.

As Secretary to Charles V, the Holy Roman Emperor, for whom Magellan had sailed, Transylvanus interviewed the survivors of the voyage when Magellan's surviving ship Victoria returned to Spain in September 1522. This group included Juan Sebastián Elcano, Francisco Albo, and Hernando de Bustamante. The result was Maximiliani Transyluani Caesaris a secretis epistola, de admirabili & novissima hispanoru in orientem navigatione, que auriae, & nulli prius accessae regiones sunt, cum ipsis etia moluccis insulis, published in Cologne in 1523.

Maximilianus, a pupil of Peter Martyr Vermigli, interviewed the surviving members of the expedition when they presented themselves to the Spanish court at Valladolid in the fall of 1522. Eager to acquire fame as a writer, he produced his tract De Moluccis Insulis as a letter to Matthäus Lang von Wellenburg, the Cardinal-Archbishop of Salzburg, who had suggested that he perform the interviews in the first place.[1] It may have also been Vermigli who suggested the project to the young courtier. Vermigli, was, after all, very interested in overseas exploration.

Maximilianus' letter is dated 24 October 1522, and his account was sent to Lang, whom he calls ambiguously domine mi unice ("my sole lord"), while the cardinal-archbishop was attending the Diet of Nuremberg. This diet was concerned with pacifying the first Protestants, which resulted in the sending of a letter of appeal to Pope Adrian VI.

Maximilianus' letter reached the hands of a Cologne printer, Eucharius Cervicornus (a Latinized rendering of "Hirtzhorn"), and the first edition of De Moluccis Insulis was printed in January 1523. Despite the war that had erupted between Charles V and Francis I of France (see Italian War of 1521), this first edition reached Paris, where it was printed anew by Pierre Viart in July 1523. A subsequent edition was printed at Rome by Minutius Calvus (Minizio Calvo), in November 1523.

Order of Magellan

The Order of Magellan is an honor bestowed on distinguished individuals who have circumnavigated the earth and who, to the course of their career, have contributed to the world of science or the environment or future progress through peace and understanding.

Among the pantheon of winners of this award are Douglas MacArthur, philanthropist and mountaineer Sir Edmund Hillary, ethnographer and adventurer Thor Heyerdahl, Dr. William Walsh, who started Project Hope, oceanographer and underwater archaeologist Dr. Robert Ballard, oceanographer Jacques-Yves Cousteau, and astronaut and United States Senator John Glenn. The Magellan Award is the highest award bestowed by the Circumnavigators Club, founded in 1902.

The honor is named after the Portuguese born explorer, Ferdinand Magellan, who is widely known as the first captain to sail around the world—though he didn't complete the circumnavigation as he died during the voyage in the Philippines, that being the Spanish navigator Juan Sebastián Elcano, who took over command of the expedition after Magellan's death, and completed the trip.

Spanish ship Juan Sebastián Elcano

Juan Sebastián de Elcano is a training ship for the Royal Spanish Navy. It is a four-masted topsail, steel-hulled barquentine (schooner barque). At 113 metres (371 ft) long, it is the third-largest tall ship in the world, and is the sailing vessel that has sailed the furthest, covering more than 2,000,000 nautical miles (3,700,000 km; 2,300,000 mi) in its history.

It is named after Spanish explorer Juan Sebastián Elcano, captain of Ferdinand Magellan's last exploratory fleet and the man who completed the first circumnavigation of the world. The ship also carries the Elcano coat of arms, which was granted to the family by Emperor Charles I following Elcano's return in 1522 from Magellan's global expedition. The coat of arms is a terraqueous globe with the motto "Primus Circumdedisti Me" (meaning: "First to circumnavigate me").

Timeline of the Magellan–Elcano circumnavigation

The Magellan–Elcano circumnavigation was the first voyage around the world in human history. It was a Spanish expedition that sailed from Seville in 1519 under the command of Ferdinand Magellan, a Portuguese, in search of a maritime path from Spain to East Asia through the Americas and across the Pacific Ocean, and concluded by Spanish navigator Juan Sebastian Elcano in 1522. Elcano and the 18 survivors of the expedition were the first men to circumnavigate the globe in a single expedition.

The Spanish fleet, the Armada de Molucca, that left Spain on 20 September 1519 consisted of five ships with 270 men: Trinidad under Magellan, Captain General; San Antonio under Juan de Cartagena; Concepcion under Gaspar de Quesada; Santiago under João Serrão; and Victoria under Luiz Mendoza.

After crossing the Atlantic and wintering in South America the expedition navigated the Straits of Magellan, then crossed the Pacific to the Philippines.

Following Magellan's death in Mactan (Philippines) in 1521, Juan Sebastián Elcano took command of the ship Victoria, sailing back to Spain across the Indian Ocean, round the Cape of Good Hope and north along the west coast of Africa.

The circumnavigation was completed by Elcano and a crew of 18 men in Victoria, returning to Spain nearly three years after they left on 6 September 1522.

Victoria (ship)

Victoria (or Nao Victoria) was a Spanish carrack and the first ship to successfully circumnavigate the world. Victoria was part of a Spanish expedition commanded by the Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan, and after his death during the voyage, by Juan Sebastián Elcano. The expedition began on August 10, 1519 with five ships. However, Victoria was the only ship to complete the voyage, returning on September 6, 1522. Magellan was killed in the Philippines. The ship was built at a shipyard in Ondarroa, with the Basques being reputed shipbuilders at the time, and along with the four other ships, she was given to Magellan by King Charles I of Spain (The Holy Roman Emperor Charles V). Victoria was named after the church of Santa Maria de la Victoria de Triana, where Magellan took an oath of allegiance to Charles V. Victoria was an 85-ton ship with a crew of 42.

The four other ships were Trinidad (110 tons, crew 55), San Antonio (120 tons, crew 60), Concepcion (90 tons, crew 45), and Santiago (75 tons, crew 32). Trinidad, Magellan's flagship, Concepcion, and Santiago were wrecked or scuttled; San Antonio deserted the expedition during the navigation of the Straits of Magellan and returned to Europe on her own.

Victoria was a carrack or nao, as were all the others except Santiago, which was a caravel.

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.