Who Was the First Person to Travel Around the World?

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The expedition led by Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan was the first to completely circumnavigate the globe, although Magellan himself was unable to finish the trip. He was killed by hostile forces in the Philippines in 1521, leaving his men to make the return trip home without him.

The five-ship fleet led by Magellan set sail from Seville in 1519. Magellan eventually landed in Cebu, Philippines in 1521. He died in battle against the forces of a local chieftain, Lapu-Lapu, who repelled his attempts to make the locals submit to the Spanish crown. Of the five ships that started the journey, only one was able to dock back in Spain, thus completing the first circumnavigation of the world.