Why are “Americans” Not “Columbians”

It’s a riddle wrapped in an enigma. As we all know, it was Christopher Columbus that “discovered” the “New World” that we call America and the “Americas”.

Today’s “Columbia” was not even on Columbus’ itinerary. Columbians of course, live in Columbia, but that South American country was not even discovered when Columbus discovered “The” New World”, which was, after all, always a part of the “World” just the part that Europeans didn’t know about.

And who the heck was Amerigo Vespucci, for whom “America” and “Americans” are named after? How did he get the honor of having an entire nation and hemisphere named after him; while Columbus had to settle for a small South American country and midsized city in the Midwest of the nation officially named “The United States of AMERICA”?

The official response is: “When Columbus discovered America, he simply believed that he had found an unexplored part of the continent of Asia”. He believed this until his death in 1506, but by then it was too late.

Meanwhile, Amerigo Vespucci, had made four voyages to the New World beginning in 1497, and realized that this was a new, unknown land, and modestly called it the “New World,”

The naming of this “New World” of America as “America” after Amerigo Vespucci, came about when a dishonest author got hold of some letters Vespucci wrote his friends describing the New World and published them in a book

The book came into the hands of a German map maker, who called the new land Americus on his new map, but then decided on “America “since that was the feminine form of the name, just as Europe and Asia are also feminine forms as well.

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