CHRISTOPHER COLUMBUS, MARINER by Samuel Eliot Morison
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CHRISTOPHER COLUMBUS, MARINER

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Back in 1942 Admiral of the Ocean Sea was published, a definitive biography of Columbus. As a book club choice it had a wider distribution than would have been likely through ordinary channels, for the average layman found the ""story"" bogging down too often in scholarly material, appended footnotes, and scientific data. Now Mr. Morison has completely rewritten the material, deleting much of the highly professional data (although one reads more of navigation than commonly given the layman, and finds it interesting). The flow of events takes over and the whole record of Columbus stands out as a superb tale of maritime adventure. For most readers who feel they are relatively familiar with the story, there will be an enormous amount of revealing new detail, which scholars alone have known. It seems unbelievably fortunate that so many contemporary records were made (though travellers who have visited the museum devoted to the material in Seville are aware of it). Each successive voyage is intimately detailed, and with the widely increased interest in the Caribbean area, the island by island discovery strikes an almost contemporary note. The record goes back to a childhood in Genoa, and at this point differs from the Madariaga Christopher Columbus at specific controversial items.. But on the various aspects of the voyages themselves, Morison, an accepted authority in the field of navigation, writes dramatically, authoritatively, colorfully. It makes very good reading.

Pub Date: July 14th, 1955
Publisher: Little, Brown-AMP