Yñigo Ortiz de Retez

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Yñigo Ortiz de Retez (fl. 1545) was a 16th-century Spanish maritime explorer, who navigated the northern coastline of the Pacific - Melanesian island of New Guinea, and is credited with bestowing the island's name ("Nueva Guinea").

Spanish discovery[edit]

Retezs expedition

On June 13, 1545 Ortiz de Retez, in command of the San Juan, left port in Tidore, an island of the East Indies and sailed to reach the northern coast of the island of New Guinea, which he ventured along as far as the mouth of the Mamberamo River.

He took possession of the land for the Spanish Crown, in the process giving the island the name by which it is known today. He called it Nueva Guinea owing to the resemblance of the local inhabitants to the peoples of the Guinea coast in West Africa.