Ratification of the Treaty of Tordesillas


Naval Museum

Naval Museum
Madrid, Spain

The Treaty of Tordesillas was the agreement signed in the town of Tordesillas—located in the modern-day province of Valladolid, Spain—on June 7, 1494 between the representatives of Isabella and Ferdinand, the Catholic Monarchs of Castile and Aragon, on the one hand, and those of King John II of Portugal on the other. It established the division of sailing and colonizing zones in the Atlantic Ocean and the New World by way of a demarcation line situated 370 leagues west of the Cape Verde islands. The aim was to avoid conflict between the Spanish Crown and the Portuguese kingdom. In practice, this treaty guaranteed that the Spaniards would not interfere in the Portuguese kingdom's route to the Cape of Good Hope, and, conversely, the Portuguese would not meddle in the recently discovered Antilles.

Photograph of the original manuscript found in the Archive of Torre do Tombo (Lisbon).


  • Title: Ratification of the Treaty of Tordesillas
  • Date: 1494
  • Location: Tordesillas, Valladolid. Spain
  • Physical Dimensions: 48 x 46 cm
  • Type: Manuscript (facsimil)
  • Original Source: Archivo del Museo Naval. Madrid. Todos los derechos reservados.
  • Rights: Archivo del Museo Naval. Madrid. All rights reserved.
  • Medium: Ink on paper
  • Photographer: Juan Antonio Clemente Izquierdo
  • Inventory: AMN 807 Ms 2506.82

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