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10th August, 1500 the island of Madagascar was discovered

On the 10th of August, 1500 Portuguese Diogo Dias discovered the island of Madagascar. In May 1500 the sailor in the fleet of Cabral went to India and got in a storm, because of which the course was lost, the ship having skirted South Africa, has strayed far to the east, but managed to sail to the land.

Diogo Dias thought that he is off the east coast of Africa and headed north in search of a port of Mozambique. However, he was not able to detect port. When the traveler moved further north, he lost sight of land (it was a cape Ambre, the map shows that it is the northern tip of Madagascar). Dias realized that actually sailed along a hitherto unknown land, which is a huge island. He decided to return, came ashore in a secluded cove and restocked drinking water. The Portuguese spent a few days in the bay, and then headed north and reached the Horn of Africa, north of the town of Malindi, where they hoped to join the flotilla of Cabral. Dias was still confident that the ship is located to the south of Mozambique and continued to move north until he was in the Gulf of Aden. The crew entered the port of the north coast of Somalia and Dias realized his mistake. Three months later, he reached Cape Verde, which has overtaken the fleet Cabral, who has returned back.

 Dias returned to Portugal in 1501 and became the first European who skirted Africa from the Gulf of Aden to Gibraltar. Navigator charted maps and made description of what he saw on the island. Subsequently, this information will be used by the Italian cartographer Alberto Cantino. On the map, dated 1502, one can see the earliest and quite precise correct image of one of the greatest island on the earth - Madagascar.

This Day in History 10-08-2013