The Book of Prophecies: Christopher Columbus's Vision of the End Times
Christopher Columbus is best known as the explorer who discovered the New World in 1492. But he was also a deeply religious man who believed that his voyages had a prophetic significance. He compiled a manuscript known as The Book of Prophecies, in which he collected biblical and medieval texts that supported his view of the discovery of the Indies as an important event in the history of salvation. In this article, we will explore the origin, content, and purpose of this fascinating document.
The Book Of Prophecies Christopher Columbus Pdf
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What is The Book of Prophecies?
The Book of Prophecies is a manuscript that contains about 200 excerpts from various sources, such as the Bible, the Church Fathers, medieval theologians, and other authors. The manuscript is divided into four parts: the first part deals with the creation and fall of humanity, the second part with the history of salvation from Abraham to Christ, the third part with the prophecies about the end times and the conversion of the Gentiles, and the fourth part with the role of Columbus and Spain in fulfilling these prophecies.
The manuscript was written by Columbus himself, probably with the help of his friend Gaspar Gorricio, a Carthusian monk who had access to a rich library. The manuscript was written between September 1501 and March 1502, with some additions until about 1505. The manuscript is currently preserved in the Biblioteca Colombina in Seville, Spain.
Why did Columbus write The Book of Prophecies?
Columbus wrote The Book of Prophecies for several reasons. First, he wanted to justify his actions and defend his rights as the discoverer and governor of the Indies. He had returned from his third voyage in 1500 not in triumph but in chains, accused of mismanagement and tyranny by his enemies. He hoped that by presenting his voyages as part of God's plan, he would gain the support and favor of the Catholic Monarchs, Ferdinand and Isabella.
Second, he wanted to express his vision and mission as a chosen instrument of God. He believed that he had been called by God to open the way for the preaching of the gospel to the Gentiles and to prepare for the coming of the Antichrist and the Last Judgment. He saw himself as a new Moses or a new Noah, leading God's people to a new Promised Land or a new Ark of Salvation.
Third, he wanted to urge the monarchs and the Church to take action and fulfill their responsibilities in advancing God's kingdom. He proposed that they should use the wealth and resources obtained from the Indies to finance a crusade to liberate Jerusalem and the Holy Land from Muslim domination. He also suggested that they should send missionaries and priests to convert and baptize the natives of the Indies.
How did Columbus use The Book of Prophecies?
Columbus used The Book of Prophecies as a source of inspiration and guidance for his voyages and activities. He also used it as a tool of communication and persuasion with his patrons and superiors. He sent copies or extracts of his manuscript to various recipients, such as Ferdinand and Isabella, Pope Alexander VI, Cardinal Juan de Carvajal, Archbishop Hernando de Talavera, etc. He hoped that by sharing his insights and interpretations, he would convince them of his sincerity and legitimacy.
What is the significance of The Book of Prophecies?
The Book of Prophecies is a valuable document that reveals much about Columbus's personality, beliefs, and motivations. It shows that he was not only an adventurous sailor but also a devout Christian who saw himself as an agent of divine providence. It also shows that he was not only a pragmatic explorer but also a visionary thinker who had a global perspective on history and eschatology.
The Book of Prophecies is also an important document that reflects some of the cultural and religious trends of its time. It illustrates how Columbus and other Europeans interpreted and appropriated the biblical and medieval prophecies in light of their own experiences and expectations. It also demonstrates how Columbus and other Europeans encountered and interacted with the native peoples and cultures of the Americas.
How to Access The Book of Prophecies?
If you are interested in reading The Book of Prophecies by Christopher Columbus, you have several options to access it. Here are some of them:
Download the PDF version. You can download a PDF version of the manuscript from the Internet Archive. This version is based on the edition and translation by Roberto Rusconi and Blair Sullivan, published by the University of California Press in 1997. This version includes a historical introduction, a critical apparatus, and a detailed commentary.
Read the online version. You can read an online version of the manuscript from the Google Books. This version is also based on the edition and translation by Roberto Rusconi and Blair Sullivan, published by the University of California Press in 1997. This version allows you to browse, search, and preview the text.
Visit the original manuscript. You can visit the original manuscript of The Book of Prophecies at the Biblioteca Colombina in Seville, Spain. This is the library that was founded by Columbus's son, Ferdinand Columbus, who inherited his father's books and papers. The manuscript is part of the collection of rare and valuable documents that are preserved and displayed in the library.
What are the Challenges and Controversies of The Book of Prophecies?
The Book of Prophecies is not an easy document to read and understand. It poses several challenges and controversies for scholars and readers alike. Here are some of them:
The manuscript is incomplete and disorganized. The manuscript of The Book of Prophecies is not a finished work but a work in progress. It consists of several loose sheets and fascicles that were not bound or numbered. It also contains many gaps, corrections, additions, and deletions. The order and arrangement of the excerpts are not clear or consistent. The manuscript also lacks a title, a preface, a table of contents, and a conclusion.
The sources are diverse and obscure. The sources that Columbus used for his compilation are diverse and obscure. They include biblical passages from both the Old and New Testaments, patristic writings from the early Church Fathers, medieval texts from various authors and genres, and other works that are either anonymous or apocryphal. Some of these sources are difficult to identify or verify, while others are corrupted or mistranslated.
The interpretation is subjective and selective. The interpretation that Columbus gave to his sources is subjective and selective. He often quoted his sources out of context or modified them to suit his own purposes. He also ignored or rejected any sources that contradicted or challenged his views. He also imposed his own framework and logic on his sources, creating connections and meanings that were not intended by the original authors.
The vision is controversial and problematic. The vision that Columbus presented in his manuscript is controversial and problematic. He claimed that he was fulfilling the prophecies about the end times and the conversion of the Gentiles. He also claimed that he was acting on behalf of God and Spain in advancing the cause of Christianity. He also proposed that the wealth and resources of the Indies should be used for a crusade to liberate Jerusalem and the Holy Land. These claims have been criticized and questioned by many scholars and historians for their accuracy, validity, and morality.
What are the Contributions and Implications of The Book of Prophecies?
The Book of Prophecies is not only a challenging and controversial document but also a valuable and influential one. It has made several contributions and implications for scholarship and society alike. Here are some of them:
It sheds light on Columbus's personality and motivations. The Book of Prophecies reveals much about Columbus's personality and motivations as an explorer, a discoverer, a governor, a writer, a believer, and a visionary. It shows his passion, ambition, curiosity, creativity, faith, and perseverance. It also shows his flaws, errors, conflicts, doubts, and failures.
It reflects the cultural and religious context of its time. The Book of Prophecies reflects the cultural and religious context of its time. It illustrates how Columbus and other Europeans perceived and interpreted the world in light of their own experiences and expectations. It also demonstrates how Columbus and other Europeans encountered and interacted with the native peoples and cultures of the Americas.
It influences the history and development of the Americas. The Book of Prophecies influences the history and development of the Americas. It provides a rationale and a justification for the exploration, colonization, evangelization, exploitation, and domination of the New World by Spain and other European powers. It also inspires other explorers, missionaries, conquerors, settlers, writers, artists, etc. to follow Columbus's footsteps and legacy.
It stimulates further research and debate on various topics. The Book of Prophecies stimulates further research and debate on various topics related to Columbus's life, voyages, discoveries, writings, beliefs, visions, etc. It raises many questions and issues that are still relevant and unresolved today. It also invites different perspectives and interpretations that are still diverse and disputed today.
The Book of Prophecies by Christopher Columbus is a remarkable document that reveals his vision of the discovery of the Indies as an important event in the history of salvation. It is also a complex document that poses many challenges and controversies for scholars and readers alike. It is also a valuable document that reflects the cultural and religious context of its time and influences the history and development of the Americas. It is also a stimulating document that invites further research and debate on various topics related to Columbus and his legacy. We hope that this article has given you an overview and an appreciation of this fascinating document. d282676c82