Newfoundland

This article deals with the island Newfoundland. There is also an article on the province of Newfoundland and Labrador. For other uses, see Newfoundland (disambiguation).

Newfoundland is a large island off the north-east coast of North America, and the most populous part of the Canadian province Newfoundland and Labrador. (The province was called "Newfoundland" until 2001.)

Newfoundland is separated from the Labrador Peninsula by the Strait of Belle Isle and from Cape Breton Island by Cabot Strait. It is 111 390 km2 in area.

The provincial capital, St. John's, is found on the southeastern tip of the island. Cape Spear, just south of the capital, is the easternmost point of Canada and North America.

The only authenticated Viking settlement in North America was discovered on this island by Norwegian explorer Dr. Helge Ingstad and his archaeologist wife, Anne Stine Ingstad, at L'Anse aux Meadows in 1960. The site of a multi-year archaeological dig, the settlement dating to more than 500 years before Christopher Columbus contains the earliest European structures in North America. Named a World Heritage site by UNESCO, it is believed to be the legendary Vinland settlement of explorer Leif Eriksson.

Newfoundland was later explored by Giovanni Caboto (John Cabot), and later by Giovanni da Verrazano in 1524, whose expedition was financed by the citizens of Lyon, under the auspices of King François I of France.

The name Newfoundland is one of the oldest European place names in Canada in continuous geographical and cartographical use, dating from a 1502 letter.

On July 5, 1610, John Guy set sail from Bristol, Great Britain with 39 other colonists for Newfoundland.

The word 'Newfoundland' is pronounced by Newfoundlanders with the second syllable slurred and the accent on the last, (as 'NewfenLAND'), so as to rhyme with the word 'understand'.


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