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Monumento al Descubrimiento de América

Monument for the Discovery of América


San Antonio, Ibiza /  Monumento al Descubrimiento de América


The Monument al Descobriment d’Amèrica (Monument to the discovery of América), popularly known as "Columbus’s Egg" was unveiled in San Antonio (Ibiza) on October 12th 1992, while Antoni Marí Tur was Mayor, and it owes its existence to three men: Antoni Hormigo, whose idea it originary was, based on the hypothesis of an "Ibizan Columbus"; Julio Bauza, the architect and project designer; and Julio Ojeda, who made the original models. It is built of reinforced concrete and is 6 metres tall. In the middle there is an iron replica of the ship Santa María, the work of Julio Bauza, which is 2.8 metres in length and 650 kilos in weight. The prow points westward, towards America. There is probably no other monument quite like it anywhere else in the world and every year it is photographed by hundreds of thousands of tourists who have come to spend their holidays on the island of Ibiza.

"Columbus’s egg"

The legend of "Columbus’s egg" is recorded by Martin Fernández de Navarrete [Colección de Viajes y descubrimientos, Madrid, 1954] based on a passage written by the historian Bossi, which in its turn was inspired by an engraving made by Teodoro Bry, a bookseller and engraver from Liège who settled in Frankfurt in 1570. It goes as follows:
"Among the festivities organised in Columbus’s honour by the court grandees on his return after his first voyage, there was a banquet offered by Cardinal Pedro González de Mendoza. The Admiral was the guest of honour and during the course of the meal one of the grandees said that if Columbus had not discovered the New World, there would have been many other talented men ready and able to do the very same thing. Then Columbus picked up an egg and asked if any of those present was capable of making it stand on end unsuported. No one was able to do it, but Columbus, by hitting the ends of the egg and flattening them, managed to make it stand on the table without falling over."

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