- NAME: Giovanni da Verrazzano
- OCCUPATION: Explorer
- BIRTH DATE: c. 1485
- DEATH DATE: 1528
- PLACE OF BIRTH: Val di Greve, Italy
- PLACE OF DEATH: Lesser Antilles
- Full Name: Giovanni da Verrazzano
- AKA: Giovanni da Verrazano
- AKA: Da Verrazano
Best Known For
Giovanni da Verrazzano was an Italian explorer who chartered the Atlantic coast of North America between the Carolinas and Newfoundland, including New York Harbor in 1524. The Verrazano-Narrows Bridge in New York was named after Da Verrazzano.
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He finally came to a rest at what is known today as Newport, Rhode Island. Verrazano and his men interacted with the local population there for two weeks, before returning to France in July 1524.
In March 1528, Verrazano left France on his final voyage, yet again seeking the passage to India (after not having found it via a South American voyage the year before). The expedition, which included Verrazano’s brother, Girolamo, sailed along the coast of Florida before drifting into the Caribbean Sea. This turned out to me the last mistake the explorer would ever make.
While sailing south of Jamaica, the crew spotted a heavily vegetated, seemingly unpopulated island, and Verrazano dropped anchor to explore it with a handful of crewmen. The group was soon attacked by a large assemblage of cannibalistic natives who killed them and ate them all as Girolamo and the rest of the crew watched from the main ship, unable to help.
Giovanni da Verrazano added greatly to the knowledge base of mapmakers in terms of the geography of the East Coast of North America. In honor of the famed explorer, the bridge spanning the Narrows between Brooklyn and Staten Island now bears his name.
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