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Christopher Columbus Hero Or Villian? Short Essay

771 words - 4 pages

Christopher ColumbusWas Christopher Columbus a world class hero, or a villain of the worst kind? Does he deserve the credit and fame that name is infamous for? Later in this work you will see why he could be considered hero and villain at once. As we learned, it's all how you interpret the facts given too you.Christopher Columbus could be considered a villain for substantial reasons. He started many things that we today would consider intolerable by today's standards. But it was not in the year 2001; it was back in the late 1400's and early 1500's. People therefore had very different ideas of what moral or "right" methods of achieving goals were.Christopher Columbus was first driven by greed, he was promised ten percent of the profits from the trip, governorship over the new-found lands, and the new title "Admiral of the Ocean Sea." On October 12, 1492 land was sighted. The first man who had sighted land was supposed to receive ten thousand maravedis for the rest of his life. The man ...view middle of the document...

Columbus converted his run aground ship (Santa Maria) into a fort, the very first European military base in the Western Hemisphere. After giving the thirty-nine men stationed there were given orders to collect gold Columbus gathered more Indian prisoners. There was a fight at one side of the island, some Indians didn't want to trade their bows and arrows and they were killed.When Columbus finally got back to Spain, he claimed he reached an island off of China that was really Hispaniola. He said that if the Crown would help him with his next trip he would bring back "as much gold as they need... and as many slaves as they ask." Because of his tall tales his next expedition was given 17 ships and more then twelve hundred men, their goal: gold and slaves. They scourged the islands in the Caribbean, taking Indians as captives. After looking for gold and finding little Columbus needed some way of filling his guarantee of riches on the voyage. Columbus went on great slave raids, and collected over fifteen hundred. In the province of Cicao, on the island of Haiti, any Indian fourteen or older where to collect a certain amount of gold every three months. They gave the gold they collected to them, and they received copper tokens to be placed around their neck and any Indian without the copper tokens had their hands cut off and usually bleed to death. Columbus had given the Indians a task that couldn't be performed, so the Indians fled for the fear of being killed. But they were hunted down with dogs and killed anyway.Columbus was also an amazing person as well. He took a huge risk on trying to convince the Spain to fund his trip. He had an amazing will to get things done, an unshakable belief in God, and his out standing seamanship skills.Do I think Columbus was a hero or a villain? In my opinion he was a mixture of greatness and villainous tendencies. I think that if he hadn't 'run' into the Americas then someone else would have at a later date. Would that have been any less of a discovery, no, of course not. I think someone else would have gotten the glory for discovering it, and also the villainy for the genocide. The world certainly would have been a different place if Columbus hadn't done what he had done when he had, and that fact is unmistakable.

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