Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Kingdom of Spain to Lithuania José Maria Robles Fraga opened the exhibition The Longest Voyage, dedicated to Ferdinand Magellan’s expedition around the globe, at Klaipėda University.
“Spain is celebrating the 500th anniversary of the great voyage of circumnavigation. We are celebrating not only its anniversary, but also the heroism of the participants of the first expedition around the globe. After it, our planet became smaller, and we became closer. This is the Kingdom of Spain’s contribution to the history of the world,” said Mr. José Maria Robles Fraga. He was pleased that the exhibition was on display in Klaipėda, a maritime city often referred to as Lithuania’s gateway to the world.
Ferdinand Magellan’s famous expedition around the world, proving that the Earth was round and the World Ocean was homogeneous, began in 1519. After 16 months of preparation, five ships with a multinational crew sailed west of the Spanish coast. Three years later, in 1522, only one ship, The Victoria, returned to Spain with a handful of surviving sailors and a new commander, Juan Elkano, replacing the inspirer of the voyage who had died during it. To this day, Magellan’s voyage is called the most important event in the history of geographical discoveries.
KU Rector prof. dr. Artūras Razbadauskas thanked the Embassy of the Kingdom of Spain in Lithuania for the opportunity to learn more about the first voyage around the world and the initiatives of cooperation. He was sure that the visitors of the exhibition would learn a lot of interesting things about the historical expedition. In his speech at the opening of the exhibition, Vytautas Lygnugaris, Chair of the Board of the KU Future Support Fund, said that one can learn from the great traveler Ferdinand Magellan how to pursue the goal consistently and purposefully.
The interactive exhibition reveals the details of the first voyage round the globe both in traditional exhibition sheets and in technologies that transfer the visitors to virtual reality. The exhibition can be attended on weekdays in the lobby of the 1st floor of the Institute of Baltic Region History and Archeology of KU.