talked of at the court of King Henry VII. then reigning in England, so that every one affirmed that it was more attributable to divine inspiration than human wisdom, to have thus sailed by the west unto the east, where spices grow, by a way never known before. By these discourses the young man, Sebastian Cabot, was strongly incited to perform some notable and similar action; and conceiving by the study of the sphere that it would be a shorter route for going to India, than that attempted by Columbus, to sail by the north-west, he caused the king to be informed thereof, who accordingly gave orders that he should be furnished with two ships, properly provided in all things for the voyage. He sailed with these from England in the beginning of summer 1496, if I rightly remember, shaping his course to the north-west, not expecting to find any other land intervening between and Cathay or Northern China. He was much disappointed by falling in with land running toward the north, the coast of which he sailed along to
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