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AGRAMONTE, JUAN DE, Catalan sailor, a native of Lérida, thought to be an explorer of Newfoundland (1511).

Following the voyages of John Cabot, Spain became concerned at the English intrusion into her territories in the New World, and planned to explore the north Atlantic coast in order to take possession of it. Consequently, in 1500, she placed Juan de Dornelos (or Dorvelos) in command of an expedition, which apparently did not put to sea.

It was with the same end in view that another sailor, Agramonte, signed a contract with Ferdinand of Aragon, whereby he undertook to lead an expedition of discovery and exploration to the “Tierra Nueva” or “Terranova.” This contract was renewed on 29 Oct. 1511 by Juana, Ferdinand’s daughter. Agramonte was made a captain at this juncture, and he was to hire two Breton pilots on the way to act as guides. The voyage was to be carried out at his expense, with the right to establish himself in the country and to trade in its products, provided that he made over one-sixth of the yield to the royal treasury, as well as one-tenth of any gold that he might discover. The expedition, which was to comprise two ships, had orders not to land on soil under the jurisdiction of the kingdom of Portugal. Up to now documentary history has failed to determine whether the voyage took place; it appears very doubtful. What constitutes the interest of the project is the recognition, by its promoters, that the banks of Newfoundland had previously been visited by the Bretons and that a part of the Newfoundland territory had been discovered by Portugal.

Gustave Lanctot

Anthiaume, Cartes marines, I, 44; II, 22–23. Martín Fernandez de Navarrete, Colección de los viages y descubrimientos que hicieron por mar los Españoles desde fines del siglo XV… (5v., Madrid, 1825–37), III, 77–78, 122–27. Hoffman, Cabot to Cartier, 32. Precursors (Biggar), xxii, 102–11, 115.

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Cite This Article

Gustave Lanctot, “AGRAMONTE, JUAN DE,” in Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 1, University of Toronto/Université Laval, 2003–, accessed February 25, 2024, http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/agramonte_juan_de_1E.html.

The citation above shows the format for footnotes and endnotes according to the Chicago manual of style (16th edition). Information to be used in other citation formats:

Permalink:   http://www.biographi.ca/en/bio/agramonte_juan_de_1E.html
Author of Article:   Gustave Lanctot
Title of Article:   AGRAMONTE, JUAN DE
Publication Name:   Dictionary of Canadian Biography, vol. 1
Publisher:   University of Toronto/Université Laval
Year of publication:   1966
Year of revision:   1979
Access Date:   February 25, 2024