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California History - Essay Example

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Summary
This essay discusses that California holds a certain distinction, not the state but the name itself. California was, of course, originally inhabited by Indian tribes and was settled by the Spanish in the 1500’s, therefore many regions, cities and landmarks bear Spanish and Indian names…
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California History
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California History

Download file to see previous pages... Had I surveyed myself, the percentage would have been even lower. The story of Califia is largely classified as a myth but to what extent is known only to Spanish explorers. The island of California, as described in a 1510 novel by Garci Ordonez de Montalvo, was located near the coast of Southeast Asia and inhabited by only women, large, muscular Amazon women. Califia was well known for her humanitarian efforts and for her sense of loyalty to the island people. She dealt fairly with friend and foe alike and had the ability to travel the world whenever she pleased. The weapons were made of gold as were all other metallic objects because gold was the only type of metal found on the island. A glorious, exotic setting to be sure whether it was real or imagined (Wright, 2005).
When Spanish explores found what is today known as Baja California, they thought it to be an island. No shame in this as GPS positioning systems would not exist for another half a millennia or so. Maybe the explorers found gold or dark woman when they landed, no one knows, or maybe the recently published novel was fresh on their mind and the story was deemed worthy of naming a previously unknown (to Europeans) piece of land. The name ‘California’, as some have suggested, may not originate from Queen Califia at all but was derived from a combination of the Spanish words Caliente and fornia meaning ‘hot oven.’ Others point to the Latin words Calida and Fornax meaning ‘hot furnace’ (Zwinger, 1961). Baja California’s climate has certainly been described accurately as both metaphors but the Amazon story is much more entrancing. The romantic and adventurous lives that the Spanish explorers led is evidence enough to me that they would likely name what they found to be a large exotic island after a large, exotic and adventurous Queen rather than the benign and unimaginative name. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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