Monday, November 01, 2010

Guaikan, Columbus, and the Hebrew language

Did You Know: In 1492, the official interpreter for Christopher Columbus' fleet was Luis de Torres who was a converted Jew. Torres was chosen as fleet interpreter because he spoke Hebrew and Arabic. After many attempts, Torres was unable to converse with the Taino people in Hebrew so Columbus decided to kidnap several Taino to try and teach them Spanish. One of the young Taino kidnapped was named Guaikan. He was taught to speak Spanish and became the interpreter for the expedition. Guaikan became Cristobol Colón's (Christopher Columbus) adopted Taino son. He took the name Diego Colón and sailed with Columbus on his subsequent voyages. – UCTP Taino News © 2010