Magellan never sailed around the world

Today marks the 500th anniversary of the death of Ferdinand Magellan, who was killed before he could complete the world’s first circumnavigation.

Though he captained the first European expedition through the strait that now bears his name between South America and Antartica, the Portuguese explorer never returned to Europe. After crossing the Pacific, he was killed on April 27, 1521, by Mactan islanders in what is now the Philippines.

His remaining crew members, under the command of Juan Sabastian Elcano, pressed forward and finally returned to the Iberian peninsula on Sept 8, 1522, finishing the voyage Magellan started over three years earlier.