The Many Landfalls of John Cabot by Peter PopeThe Many Landfalls of John Cabot by Peter Pope

The Many Landfalls of John Cabot

byPeter Pope

Paperback | November 1, 1997

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On 24 June 1497 John Cabot landed somewhere on the eastern seaboard of what is now Canada, yet even today, five hundred years later, no one knows precisely where. Once an issue in diplomatic negotiations over title to a continent, Cabot's landfall has also been the subject, especially in centennial years, of competing attempts to appropriate the meaning of the event.

Beginning with the historical context of Cabot's journey, Pope traces the various landfall theories which have placed his landing in locations from the Strait of Belle Isle to Cape Breton. The very uncertainty of our knowledge, he argues, has allowed nationalists in both Newfoundland and Canada to shape the debate about Cabot's itinerary and to stake claims to the landfall that amount to the invention of differing national traditions. As well, Pope concludes, the invented tradition of 'discovery' has allowed Europeans and their descendants to overlook the fact that their possession of North America is based on appropriation from Aboriginal peoples.

Well-illustrated with period maps, engravings, and stamps, The Many Landfalls of John Cabot will appeal to readers interested in early European transatlantic voyages, in the nature of the anniversaries that have celebrated Cabot's landing, and in the question of how national pasts are constructed, often from ambiguous sources.

Peter E. Pope is a member of the Archaeology Unit, Department of Anthropology, Memorial University of Newfoundland.
Title:The Many Landfalls of John CabotFormat:PaperbackDimensions:208 pages, 8.98 × 5.99 × 0.72 inPublished:November 1, 1997Publisher:University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0802071503

ISBN - 13:9780802071507

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From Our Editors

The Many Landfalls of John Cabot examines the theories and claims surrounding Cabot's arrival somewhere on the eastern seaboard of what is now Canada, and questions the tradition of 'discovered' lands. Both Newfoundland and Canada have staked a claim in Cabot's landfall, with both governments interpreting the meaning of the event. But Europeans and their Canadian descendants completely overlook the fact that Cabot's 'discovery' began a long history of land appropriation from native peoples. Complete with period maps and engravings, The Many Landfalls of John Cabot takes issue with the construction of national pasts.