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Columbus Paperback – September 1, 1996
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Top Customer Reviews
Regardless, the book is extremely interesting, has awesome pictures to go along with the enthralling story, and is a wonderful, historical book. My only complaint against it is that the end gets very depressing as it details how Columbus was treated at the end of his life... but that IS what happened, so it's not really a complaint, just a comment on the fact that it's, again, something to talk about. REALLY, REALLY great book for homeschooling or for the parent that likes to increase their child's knowledge of history!
From a Catholic or Christian parent, there is nothing to be contrary to the faith as well. I felt it was neutral if not positive towards the faith of the persons in the story. Perhaps for those not Christian it would annoy them to see the occasional comments about Columbus praising God or thanking God, etc... but to be fair, this is exactly how they thought in the time and so it really DOES belong in the story, regardless of what your beliefs are today. So a heads up to both Christian parent and not as to the content of the book.
But I am not sure if it lives up to the expectations I had from seeing it everywhere.
The main thing I was surprised to see was that D'Aulaire perpetuates the flat-earth myth. It is now a well known fact that the "Columbus proved the world was round" doctrine is wrong and misleading. So I am surprised to see that while D'Aulaire gave a head nod to the Portuguese mapmakers and how they knew the world was round, the book still comes off basically supporting the traditional flat earth version of the story. In reality, the Catholics had been teaching this through Aquinas (on page ONE of the Summa) and even as far back as the Venerable Bede in the 600s. Perhaps not every uneducated person knew, but the Catholic educated did, and there was no conspiracy. Everyone knew.
In fact, Spanish advisers to King Ferdinand were skeptical primarily because they thought the circumference was much longer (the trip was going to be a lot bigger) than Columbus had calculated. Turns out they were right! Not, as D'Aulaire suggests, because they thought Columbus' ships wouldn't be able to make it "uphill" as he circled around. This is NOT revisionist theory! The very popular kids' book, "The Librarian Who Measured the Earth" by Kathryn Lasky does a great job explaining this.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The text material is good and historically informative. The book is long so children would prefer it being read to them. With that being said, the illustrations are old fashion.Published on July 31, 2013 by Rhonda Garcia
Must have books in your home library especially for homeschoolers. I would buy every book from the author. Good explanation with facts and details unlike other authors.Published on July 5, 2013 by Balaji Srinath
Well written and illustrated. Comprehensive. Quality literature. A classic book to save and read again and again. Excellent for teaching.Published on March 25, 2013 by PMW
The D'Aulaire's have produced another fabulous book that we add to our homeschool library.
I like that the book is large so the illustrations look more dramatic.