A Letter of Christopher Columbus


Following his first voyage across the Atlantic, Columbus wrote a brief report on the "Islands of India beyond the Ganges." His intent was to announce his recent discoveries and to garner financial and political support for another voyage. The first edition of the letter was printed in Spanish, in Barcelona, in April 1493. Within a month, Stephan Plannck published a Latin translation in Rome. Plannck’s preamble gave credit to Fernando of Aragon for supporting the expedition but omitted any mention of Queen Isabel. Plannck soon published a corrected edition that mentioned Isabel’s role. It was this Latin edition that circulated widely and spread the news of Columbus’ discoveries throughout Europe.

Date Created

Subject Date

Publication Information

Stephan Plannck, Rome

Title in Original Language

Epistola Christofori Colom...

Type of Item

Physical Description

8 pages ; 20 centimeters


  • E.D. Church calls this Plannck's second or corrected edition.
  • English version of the letter begins on image number 15. Latin title begins with "Epistola Christofori..."

Last updated: May 24, 2017