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Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography/Vicente y Bennazar, Andres

< Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography

VICENTE Y BENNAZAR, Andres (ve-then'tay), Spanish geographer, lived in the second half of the 15th century. He published at Antwerp in 1476 four charts, representing the four continents of the world. Unlike Columbus, he did not imagine America to be part of Asia, but represented it as a distinct continent and, what is more remarkable, as a continent divided into two parts by an isthmus. This publication, at so early a date, and before columbus's discovery, has caused much discussion. Some authorities think that Vicente y Bennazar had arrived at the conclusion that America existed as a distinct continent; others, that such an opinion was general among scientific circles in the 15th century; and still others, that he only intended to reproduce the lost Atlantis spoken of by Plato and the ancients.