Books: Jewish Discoverer?

CHRISTOPHER COLUMBUS — Salvador de Madariaga—Macmillan ($4).

In 400-odd years, 400-odd researchers have worried the question: Who was the man called Christopher Columbus? Was he a nobody from Genoa? A royal bastard from Portugal? An imaginative pirate from Catalonia? Annoyed with the name Christopher Columbus, he called himself Cristóbal Colón ("Bringer of Christ-Repopulator"). What was his real name? He claimed he went to sea at ten. Others snorted that he was only a high-pressure promoter. Why was he so evasive about his past?

Latest answer to these riddles was offered this week in a...

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