Christopher Columbus was Italian. Before Spain sponsored Columbus voyage, France, England and Portugal declined to back the expedition.
Columbus’s flagship ran into a coral reef on Christmas Eve 1492. When 40 crew members were left behind to start the first European settlement in the Americas they named it “La Navidad” which basically means Christmas in Spanish. When Columbus returned a year later none of the members could be found alive.
From historical accounts it looks like the discovery got to Columbus head. He established a draconian rule during his governance of Hispaniola, executing rebel Spanish colonialists and cutting off hand of native Islanders who didn’t bring enough gold. It was the dawn of the 16th century, but his rule was considered brutal even for the times he lived in. The Spanish royal commissioner arrested Columbus in 1500 and brought him back to Spain in chains. He lost the post of the governor, however, the Spanish king decided to finance another journey.