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HISTORY OF CANADA.

 

as the Gulf of St. Lawrence—became familiar to these hardy sailors. It is claimed that at least two of them—Denys and Aubert —had found their way well up the St. Lawrence before 1510. Certain it is that knowledge of the gulf had in some way reached the map-maker Sylvanus in 1511, for in his map of that year the "Square Gulf" (Golfo pwdrado) is outlined, lying to the west of Newfoundland.

Verrazano.—In 1515 Francis I. came to the throne of France. He was ambitious to gain for her a share in the golden stream which was flowing into the coffers of Spain from her new discoveries in the west. In 1524 he commissioned Verrazano to voyage into those parts and secure a portion of this western world for France. Verrazano coasted along the shore from Florida to what is now the State of Maine, and called it all New France. He reported that the streams flowing into the Atlantic were all small. Hence, it is supposed, arose the notion of a narrow barrier of land with, behind it, the Sea of Verrazano—a notion which lasted for many years among the map-makers and scholars of Europe.

The Master Pilot of St. Malo.—To find a way through to this Sea of Verrazano and so reach Cathay was the ardent wish of Francis I. His conflict with his great rival, Charles V., King of

Spain and Emperor of Germany,

gave him, however, but scant leisure to turn his thoughts beyond the Atlantic. Not until 1534 was he able to send another official explorer to investigate the waters behind the new-found land off which his subjects fished. What more natural than to choose a leader for the expedition from among the men of St. Maio, whose

fishermen knew the region well?   n

And who more capable than Jacques Cartier, master pilot ? In 1534 Car-tier sailed through the Straits of Belle Isle, and coasted down the

western shore of Newfoundland. From its rugged sterility he concluded that "this must be the land which God allotted to Cain."

JACQUES

CARTIER.

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