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1. John Italian name Giovanni Caboto. 1450--98, Italian explorer, who landed in North America in 1497, under patent from Henry VII of England, and explored the coast from Nova Scotia to Newfoundland
2. his son, Sebastian. ?1476--1557, Italian navigator and cartographer, who served the English and Spanish crowns: explored the La Plata region of Brazil (1526--30)
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



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John (Giovanni) Cabot. Born between 1450 and 1455, in Genoa; died 1499 (?). John Cabot moved to Venice on Mar. 28, 1476. In 1490 he entered the service of England. Sent by Bristol merchants in search of a western sea route to China, he reached at least the island of Newfoundland in 1497. While there, he discovered (perhaps for the second time) the Grand Banks. In 1498 he reached the American continent and explored a large section of its eastern coast.

Sebastian Cabot. Born circa 1475 in Venice; died 1557 in London. Son of John Cabot; accompanied his father on voyages in 1497 and 1498. After moving to Spain, Sebastian Cabot was appointed pilot major there (Feb. 5, 1518). From 1526 to 1530, at the head of a Spanish fleet, he explored the Río de la Plata and the lower course of the Paraná River and discovered the lower section of the Paraguay River. Returning to England, he became a royal adviser for maritime affairs and was one of the organizers of the expedition of H. Willoughby and R. Chancellor (1553-54) in search of the northeast passage. He was also one of the founders of the British Muscovy Company in 1554 or 1555.


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Rubio y Esteban, J. M. Exploración y conquista del Rio de la Plata, siglos XVI y XVII. Barcelona, 1942.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.