Phillippa, Wife of Columbus


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Phillippa Perestrella Moniz is born into provincial nobility on the Island of Porto Santo in the Madeira Islands.  Her father, Bartolomeo Perestrello, is a Knight of the Order if Santiago, an explorer, and  the Governor of Porto Santo. Phillippa’s grandparents are Basque adventurers and merchants who have settled the Island and who are well connected to Prince Henry and the colorful band of adventurers in the heady infancy of the Age of Exploration. When Phillippa’s father dies her mother takes her and her sister to Lisbon to be a part of royal society. At home on the waterfront, Phillippa is torn between the responsibilities of her station, and the excitement of the sea. Her familiarity with sailors and other commoners creates problems for her in the sophisticated circles her mother inhabits. She finds herself alone, and trapped in a convent with few choices left to her until the Conspiracy offers her an escape.