The Purloined Letter of History: From Genoa to Galway – Columbus’ Visit to Galway

Galway - Monument for Columbus visit to Galway on these shores
around 1477 the
genoese sailor
found sure signs
of land beyond
the atlantic

la citta di genova
alla citta de galway

ar an gcladach
seo thar timpeall
1477 taibhsiodh
don mairéalach
as genobha, tir a
beith i goéin
thar farraige siar.

la citta di genova
alla citta de galway

Galway - Monument for Columbus visit to Galway

Monument for Columbus’ visit to Galway

Why is it that, whilst our media bursts at the seams with the tiresome blathering of commentators and “experts”, all trying hopelessly to interpret current events and predict their outcomes, never a word is uttered about the real, substantive occurrences and trends in history which have shaped today’s world and which clearly illuminate the path to the future?  Is it, as is the case with An Gorta Mor, a kind of self imposed censorship borne of extreme trauma inflicted by British imperial hands?  Or is the British influence even more direct than that?  After all, when they decided to extinguish the Irish language, they ordered us to do the dirty work ourselves with the command: “beat your children when they speak Irish!”  And in terror we did.  That’s not just control, in today’s military jargon it’s full-spectrum dominance.  In that light, any notion that they would not bother to suppress the most important aspects of our history is totally incongruous.

The reputed seven year journey of St Brendan to America in the fifth century is thus ridiculed, played down, shrouded in mysticism.  But just why did Christopher Columbus, prior to his historic voyage of discovery, pay a visit to Galway? – not an insubstantial effort in those days.

We know that Columbus was inspired by the great Nicholas of Cusa whose intention was to free Europe from the grip of imperialist insanity that prevailed at that time, by taking the best of European culture, represented by the Renaissance, across the ocean to a new world where it could be nurtured and matured to its full potential to thus return as an irresistible force to expunge once and for all the incarnate Zeusian evil which had bedeviled humanity throughout history.

Did St Brendan and his associates, some thousand years earlier, share that conviction?  Were they the inspiration for Cusa?  The dedicated mission of St Patrick, St Brendan and their compatriots in saving European civilization after the fall of the Roman Empire answers “yes” to those questions in our minds as does their later influence upon Charlemagne, for example, whose economic development projects can rightly be interpreted as an anti-imperial precursor to the American system of economics subsequently established in the Massachusetts Bay colony and then more firmly secured in Washington, Franklin and Hamilton’s American Republic.


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