Giovanni Caboto, more commonly known as John Cabot, was born in Genoa, Italy, in 1450. In 1476 he moved to Venice, the main trading center on the Mediterranean Sea, where he worked as a merchant and navigator. In 1483 he moved to Bristol, England. While in England he approached King Henry VII about his belief that sailors should be able to sail west to reach Asia. The king liked his ideas and agreed to pay for an expedition to search for a Northwest Passage to the riches in Asia. Cabot set sail on his ship, the Matthew, on May 2, 1497 and arrived in the New World a month later. He landed around Cape Breton Island or Labrador. Cabot took possession of this land in the name of King Henry VII. He arrived back in England on August 6, 1497 and received £10 for having “found the new isle.” The king also awarded Cabot a £20 pension to be paid annually. A year later on July 25, 1498, Cabot and five ships with three hundred men sailed north again to search for a Northwest Passage. By mid-July the ships got as far as Iceland but with minus-degree weather and harsh storm conditions, they refused to go any further. The men sailed south-east, back to England.