4.Juan Sebastian Elcano

4.1. Biography

Juan Sebastian Elcano was born in 1486 and died in 1526. He was an Spanish sailor, navigator and the best explorer remembered for leading the second half of the firs round the world navigation (Circumnavigation) having taken presented him with a coat of arms that contained a globe and the phrase: "you went around me first".

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4.2. What did he do in the expedition?

Elcano served as a naval commander of Charles I of Spain and took part of the expedition to the Philippines. They set sail with five ships, the Concepción, San Antonio, Santiago, Trinidad and Victoria with a fleet of 241 men from Spain in 1519. Dissatisfaction and severe weather plagued the voyage from the beginning and hostility among the Spaniards and Portuguese grew rapidly which led to the mutiny of some of his crew members. The Santiago was later destroyed by a storm. The fleet sailed across the Atlantic Ocean to the eastern coast of Brazil and into Puerto San Julián in Argentina. Several days later they discovered a passage known as the Strait of Magellan located in the southern tip of South America and sailed through the strait. The crew of the San Antonio mutiened and return to Spain. On 28 November 1520, three ships set sail for the Pacific Ocean and about 19 men died before they reached Buam on 6 March 1521. Conflicts with the rearby insland of Rota prevented Magellan and Elcano from resupplying their ships with food and water. They eventually gathered enough supplies and continued on with their jouney to the Philippines and remained there for several weeks. Close relationship developed between the Spaniards and the islanders. They took part on converting the Cebuano tribes into Christianity and became involved in tribal warfare between rival Filipino groups in Mactan Island.
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On 27 April 1521, Magellan was killed and the Spaniards defeated in the Battle of Mactan. The surviving members of the expedition could not decided who should succeed Magellan. The men finally voted on a joint command withe the leadership divided between Duarte Barbosa and Jao Serrao. Within four days these two were also dead having died by being betrayed by a massacre at the feast at the hands of Rajah Humabon. The mission teetering on disaster, Joao López Carvalho took command of the fleet and led it on a meandering journey throug the Philippine archipielago.
During this six month listless journey after Magellan died, and before reaching the Maluccas, Elcano´s stature grew as the men becamen disillusioned with the weak leadership of Carvalho. The two ships, Victoria and Trinidad finally reached the destination of their mission, the Maluccas, on 6 November. The rested and re-supplied in this haven, and filled their holds with the precious cargo of cloves and spices. On 18 December, the ships were ready to leave. Trinidad sprung a leak, and was unable to be repaired. Carvalho stayed with this ship along with 52 others hoping to return later.
The Victoria, commanded by Elcano along with 17 European survivors of the 240 men expedition and 4 (survivors out of 13) Timorese Asians continued its westward voyage to Spain crossing the Indian and Atlantic Ocean. They eventually reached Sanlúcar de Barrameda on September 1522. One of the crew members of the Magellan and Elcano expedition was an Italian scholar named Antonio Pigafetta, who had written several documents about the events of the expedition. According to Pigafetta the voyage covered 14.460 legues, about 81.449 kilometers. Elcano was awarded a coat of arms by Charles I of Spain, featuring a globe with the motto: Primus circumdedisti me (in Latin, "Youy went around me firs"), and a annual pension. He never married but he had a son by María Hernández Dernialde named Domingo Elcano, whom he legitimized in his last will and testament. In 1572 to mark the 50th anniversary of the voyage king Philip II of Spain awarded the male heirs of Elcano the hereditary tittle of Margues de Buglas.

4.3. How did he became an important person in the expedition?

The Trinity sailed badly so it stayed in the port of Tidore to be repaired and back across the Pacific until Panama. Elcano finally took command of the expedition´s return. They had the problem of return to Spain with the remainder of the expedition, without knowing the way back across the Pacific, and seemed crazy to try it, so chose to browse the Portuguese seas to the west, skirting Africa Known routes and with possibilities of finding the Portuguese.
After crossing the Indian Ocean and turn the cape of good hope, in Africa, he completed the first circumnavigation of the globe, completing the expedition, and arrived at the port of departure, Sanlúcar de Barrameda, on September 6, 1522, in Victoria´s boat, along with other surviving 17 men, which meant the achievement of an impressive feat for the time. Finally, on 8 September, was downloaded in Seville the only ship that had managed to return.
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4.4. Why was he important ?

Accustomed since childhood to the life he later refines his maritime experience with the maritime commerce of contraband in the ports of France. His enterprising and adventurous character made him participate in the expedition that Cardenal Cisneros (Francisco Jiménez de Cisneros) organised agains Algeria in 1509. Upon his returned, he went to Seville, where he came to form part of the crew that accompanied Magellan in his voyage to connect Spain with the so-called East Indies or Far East. In this voyage when Magellan.

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4.5. What did he do in the end?

King Charles I of Spain granted him an annual income of 500 ducats in gold and, as a shield, an area in the world with the inscription in Latin: Primus circumdedisti me, which means "the first who turned me around".
There was made a navy in his honor. The ship of the Navy Spanish Juan Sebastian Elcano bears his name, in honor of its leading role in the first circumnavigation of the Earth.
After writting his testament on July 26 th, died on August 4 th, 1526 aboard of the nao Victoria while taking part in the expedition of García Jofre of Loaisa to the Moluccas again.
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