Erdogan rewrites history

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Christopher Columbus stumbled on land on October 12th, 1492 – two weeks later he arrived at Cuba.

This is really ridiculous: The Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has claimed in a TV show, not Columbus had discovered America, but muslims in the 12th century. He refers to the alleged mention of a mosque in Columbus‘ log book. This is reported by different media (Die Welt, ABC.es, Yahoo News). This assertion is not new, and is not getting true by repeating it.

Erdogans excitement is about an entry of October 29th, 1492, when Columbus sailed along the Cuban coast. It goes like this:

  • »One of them [mountains] has on its summit another peak, like a beautiful mosque.« (The Journal of Christopher Columbus. Translated by Cecil Jane. London 1968)
  • »Una de ellas [montañas] tiene encima otro montecillo a manera de una hermosa mezquita.« (El Histador,  no exact source mentioned)

The mountain is supposed to be Teta de Bariay , also called Loma del Cucurucho. It can be seen from the Bay of Bariay in southeastern Cuba (there is a picture of it on this Abbildung ).

Suppose that Columbus had actually seen a mosque. Then he would straightway gone there because it was his goal to find the Emperor of China, the Great Khan. He had even an Arabic interpreter with him, because he believed that this would most likely be the language that people understand in the Far East. But Columbus sailed ahead and never returned to Bahia de Bariay.

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