...free authority, faculty and power to sail to all parts, regions and coasts of the eastern, western and northern sea, under our banners, flags and ensigns, with five ships or vessels of whatsoever burden and quality they may be, and with so many and with such mariners and men as they may wish to take with them in the said ships, at their own proper costs and charges, to find, discover and investigate whatsoever islands, countries, regions or provinces of heathens and infidels, in whatsoever part of the world placed, which before this time were unknown to all Christians.
For centuries no other records were found (or at least published) that relate to this expedition; it was long believed that Cabot and his fleet were lost at sea. But at least one of the men scheduled to accompany the expedition, Lancelot Thirkill of London, is recorded as living in London in 1501.
King Henry VII continued to support exploration from Bristol. The king granted Hugh Eliot, Robert Thorne and his son a bounty of ₤20 in January 1502 for purchasing the Gabriel, a ship for an expedition voyage that summer. Later in 1502 or early 1503 he paid Eliot a reward of ₤100 for a voyage, or voyages, in "2 ships to the Isle of new finding," as Newfoundland was called. This amount was larger than any previously accounted for in royal support of the explorations.
Sebastian Cabot, one of John's sons, also became an Explorer, later making at least one voyage to North America. In 1508 he was searching for the North West Passage. Nearly two decades later, he sailed to South America for Spain to repeat Ferdinand Magellan's voyage around the world. He became diverted by searching for silver along the Río de la Plata (1525–8) in Argentina.
The known sources do not concur on all aspects of the events, and none can be assumed to be entirely reliable. Cabot was described as having one "little ship", of 50 tons burden, called the Matthew of Bristol (according to the 1565 chronicle). It was said to be laden with sufficient supplies for "seven or eight months". The ship departed in May with a crew of 18 to 20 men. They included an unnamed Burgundian (modern- day Netherlands) and a Genoese barber, who presumably accompanied the expedition as the ship's surgeon.
For the 500th-anniversary celebrations, the governments of Canada and the United Kingdom designated Cape Bonavista in Newfoundland as the "official" landing place. Here in 1997 Queen Elizabeth II, along with members of the Italian and Canadian governments, greeted the replica Matthew of Bristol, following its celebratory crossing of the Atlantic.
The Cabot Project at the University of Bristol was organized in 2009 to search for the evidence on which Ruddock's claims rest, as well as to undertake related studies of Cabot and his expeditions. The lead researchers on the project, Evan Jones and Margaret Condon, claim to have found further evidence to support aspects of Ruddock's case, including some of the information she intended to use to argue for a successful return of the 1498 expedition to Bristol. These appear to place John Cabot in London by May 1500, albeit Jones and Condon have yet to publish their documentation.
The Project is collaborating on an archaeological excavation at the community of Carbonear, Newfoundland, located at Conception Bay and believed the likely location for Carbonariis' mission settlement. The Archaeology of Historic Carbonear Project, carried out by Memorial University of Newfoundland, has conducted summer fieldwork each season since 2011. So far, it has found evidence of planter habitation since the late 17th century and of trade with Spain through Bilbao, including a Spanish coin minted in Peru.
Cabot is known today as Giovanni Caboto in Italian, as Zuan Chabotto in Venetian, as John Cabot in English, as Jean Cabot in French, and as Juan Caboto in Spanish. The non-Italian forms are derived from how his name was recorded in related 15th-century documents. In Venice he signed his names as "Zuan Chabotto", Zuan being a form of John typical to Venice. He continued to use this form in England, at least among Italians. He was referred to by his Italian banker in London as 'Giovanni Chabbote', in the only known contemporary document to use this version of his first name.