Biographical dictionary reveals the unknown history of Spain in Canada

This content was published on Jun 09, 2022 – 04:55

Toronto (Canada), June 9 (EFE). The Electronic Spanish Biographical Dictionary (DB-e), which offers online biographies of more than 50,000 historical figures from Spain around the world, was presented Wednesday in Canada to reveal the unknown history of Spain in the North American country.

DB-e, created by the Royal Spanish Academy of History and available online since 2018, was introduced by the Dictionary’s Artistic Director, Jaime Olmedo, at the Royal Canadian Geographical Society headquarters in Ottawa.

Before Canadian academics and historians, Olmedo, who in recent weeks also presented DB-e in Miami and New York, explained the work’s origin and modus operandi while at the same time introducing the audience to some Spanish historical figures associated with Canada’s past.

After introducing the dictionary in Ottawa, Olmedo confirmed in statements to Efe that DB-e is a unique work in the world.

“No other country has something like it,” Olmedo said. “No other biographical dictionary has this level of information, more than 60,000 pages of text and 50,000 characters, and no country has an electronic development like we’ve done.”

In this regard, the Spanish Ambassador to Canada, Alfredo Martinez Serrano, explained that DB-e is “the biggest exercise in cultural and digital diplomacy in Spain”.

Martinez Serrano added: “History is woven by the people and through the Biographical Dictionary we have been able to publish that there is a large presence of Spaniards in the history of Canada. It is a lost thread that must be highlighted.”

See also  Migrants stranded in northern Mexico will seek asylum from the Government of Canada

For his part, Olmedo highlighted the importance of Spain in the exploration of Canada.

He continued, “There are many geographical features in Canada that bear Spanish names because of the large number of people who crossed the 60th parallel and explored some Canadian regions for the first time.”

It was these early Spanish explorers, who from the beginning of the sixteenth century charted the contours of the Canadian east coast, who most aroused the curiosity of the Canadian public.

“The president of the Royal Geographical Society of Canada, John Geiger, told me they were unaware of this connection,” Olmedo explained.

One such explorer was Esteban Gómez, a Portuguese in the service of the Spanish crown who was part of the beginning of Fernando de Magallanes’ voyage and who later attempted to find a passage to the Pacific Ocean through the north of the American continent.

In his research between 1524 and 1525, Gómez traveled to the coast of Newfoundland and possibly those of the present-day Canadian provinces of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, above 42°N latitude.

And although his expedition did not find the long-awaited northern passage from the Atlantic to the Pacific, the detailed information Gómez collected allowed cartographer Diego Ribeiro to make highly accurate maps of the coastline that is now Canada’s Atlantic coast.

During the presentation Olmedo also referred to the most famous story of the large number of Spanish expeditions that set out from the Viceroy of New Spain in the eighteenth century to tour the Pacific coast of Canada.

See also  Moscoso won two titles in the United States

“In Canadian history, there is a large Spanish presence. The importance that Spain has in certain aspects of Canadian history is impressive,” Olmedo concluded. EFE

jcr / gcf

EFE 2022. Redistribution and redistribution of all or part of the contents of the Efe Services, without the prior and express consent of Agencia EFE SA, is expressly prohibited.

Sacha Woodward

"Wannabe writer. Lifelong problem solver. Gamer. Incurable web guru. Professional music lover."

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top