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HISTORY OF CANADA.   '3

 

though plain John Cabot became Sir John Cabot in requital for his services upon this voyage, it has never been made quite clear what part of our coast he visited. The same uncertainty surrounds

the voyage of his son Sebastian in the following yea*..

Cortereal.—Portugal, too, turned her attention toward the north, and in the year 1500 sent thither Cortereal, one of her most renowned sea-captains, upon a voyage of discovery. His route also is doubtful. The name Labrador (slave-land) has come down to us from his time, for he carried back with him from that region a cargo of Indians and sdld them into slavery. The story of rock-bound coasts, of fog and cold, brought

back by Cabot and Cortereal, contained little to favor the notion that Cathay—a land of golden warmth—lay in the direction they had gone, and accordingly English and Portuguese navigators joined those of Spain in more southerly voyages.

The Fishermen of the Banks.—There was much national rivalry in the race for the new lands in the west. Columbus, the Cabots, Cortereal, and many others sailed under royal commissions. They were official explorers. Each was under orders to take possession for his sovereign of all the lands he might discover. A very different class of men soon found their way into those "mists of the mighty Atlantic" which lie off the coasts of Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and Cape Breton. In the north-western seaports of France lived Norman and Breton fishermen, who plied their hazardous calling upon the rocky coasts of the French provinces of Picardy, Normandy and Brittany. To them came tidings of the new lands to the west. In a spirit of hardihood born of their daily life they put out to sea in search of this new shore. Some say they reached it even before Cabot. This much seems clear, that, at least as early as 1504 the cod fishery of the Newfoundland Banks—our oldest industry—had its beginning.

A Growing Industry.—The French king, Louis XII., was

SEBASTIAN CABOT.

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