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User comments for Amerigo
It's highly unlikely that America got it's name from Amerigo Vespucci and it's practically unheard of for places to be named after an explorer's first name. The origin is closer linked to Richard Ameryk who was the financier of John Calbot's voyage which landed in North America. The older British maps have America on it and when Italian mapmakers saw the word, it was assumed it was after Vespucci who explored the coast of South America.
-- Anonymous User
Highly unlikely that the name of America comes from Ameryk - it comes from a mistake that the mapmaker Waldseemuller made on his worldmap which showed the discoveries of Amerigo Vespucci. Waldseemuller thought that Vespucci and not Columbus were the first Europeans to discover America so he named the New World after Vespucci. By the time he realised his mistake 1,000 copies of the map were already made. Waldseemuller would have used the first name because it sounds much better. Can you imagine 'The United States of Vespuccia!'
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