Amerigo Vespucci

Italian explorer, financier, navigator and cartographer

Amerigo Vespucci (9 March 1451[1]- 22 February 1512) was an Italian merchant, explorer and cartographer. He was the first person to explain that the New World discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1492 was not the eastern area of Asia, but an unknown continent (the Americas).

Amerigo Vespucci
Amerigo Vespucci01.jpg
Statue at the Uffizi, Florence
Born(1451-03-09)March 9, 1451
DiedFebruary 22, 1512(1512-02-22) (aged 60)
Other namesAmérico Vespucio [es]
Americus Vespucius [la]
OccupationMerchant, explorer, cartographer
Known forDemonstrating that the New World was not Asia but a previously-unknown fourth continent.[a]

America was named after Amerigo Vespucci. North and South America get this name from a feminized and latinized version of his first name, Americus.[2]

Vespucci died of malaria.


  1. The letters of Amerigo Vespucci and other documents illustrative of his career: "We learn from Bandini that Amerigo was the third son of a notary at Florence, named Ser Nastagio (Anastasio) Vespucci, by Lisabetta Mini, and that he was born on March 9th, 1451.".
  2. Arciniegas, Germán. Amerigo and the New World: the life & times of Amerigo Vespucci. Translated by Harriet de Onís. New York: Octagon Books, 1978.

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  Media related to Amerigo Vespucci at Wikimedia Commons