Sebastian Cabot visiting Henry VII
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Sebastian Cabot visiting Henry VII

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Sebastian and his father John Cabot were Genoese merchants settled in Bristol. In 1497, five years after Columbus's first voyage to the New World, John persuaded Henry VII to let him sail from Bristol, in search of lands which had not yet been claimed by Spain. He discovered Newfoundland and Nova Scotia, which he took to be 'The Country of the Great Khan' - that is, the Chinese Empire. On his return Henry VII rewarded him with £10.

This panel shows the son, taking his leave of King Henry on setting out for a third voyage in 1508, in search of the North-West Passage. On this occasion he reached the mouth of Hudson's Bay 100 years before Hudson himself. The British claim to North America was based on the voyages of the Cabots.

To him that found the new isle: £10
- Royal Accounts of Henry VII.

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