Background• By 1400, Europeans were ready to venture beyond their borders• Renaissance encouraged a new spirit of adventure and curiosity• Printing press (Guttenberg- approx. 1450) spread ideas and new maps and charts
Causes of European Exploration• #1 New Trade Routes – People want wealth; achieve that through trade • Traded spices (nutmeg, ginger, cinnamon, pepper) • Introduced during Crusades; people still demanded goods once wars ended • Demand greater than supply > high prices
(cont’d)• Trade routes controlled by Italians and Muslims: – Muslims sold Asian goods to Italians – Italian merchants resold items at increased prices to merchants throughout Europe – Other traders did not like this and wanted new routes that bypassed Italian merchants – Italy had great location
(cont’d)• #2 Spread Christianity – Crusades left hostility between Christians and Muslims – Europeans believed they had a sacred duty to continue fighting Muslims and convert non- Christians
(cont’d)• Example– Bartolomeu Dias: early portuguese explorer – “For God, glory, and gold”• “To serve God and His majesty, to give light to those who were in darkness and to grow rich as all men desire”
(cont’d)• #3 New Exploration Technologies – Caravel: stronger, sturdier ship with triangular sails (adopted from Arabs); made it possible to sail against the wind – Astrolabe: brass circle with carefully adjusted rings marked off in degrees; used to calculate latitude (perfected by Muslims) – Compass: magnetically tracked direction (Chinese invention)
(cont’d)• #4 New land/power and wealth=• Imperialism- a smaller country dominates a smaller one for the following reasons: – Wealth – Power – Resources – Nationalism
Major Players in Europe before 16th Century• Portugal• Spain• France• Dutch• England? > did not really start until 17th century > Queen Elizabeth I• Others join later
Portugal leads the way• Portugal was first to establish trading outposts along the west coast of Africa• Prince Henry (Henry the Navigator): son of Portugal’s king – Nations most enthusiastic supporter of exploration – Conquered Muslim city in North Africa where he discovered exotic wealth never found in Europe (cinnamon, cloves, pepper, silver, gold, jewels) > Middle Passage; resources
(cont’d)• Henry determined to find the source of that wealth > mainly the Muslims who were so wealthy• 1419 he founded a navigation school in Portugal (mapmakers, shipbuilders, scientists, and sea captains, gathered there to perfect their trade)
(cont’d)• By Henry’s death, Portugal held a series of trading posts along western African shores – Traded for gold and ivory – Eventually, they traded for African captives (slaves) – Next, Portugal search for a trade route to Asia
The Slave Trade1. Existed in Africa before the coming of the Europeans.2. Portuguese replaced European slaves with Africans. – Sugar cane and sugar plantations – First boatload of African slaves brought by the Spanish in 1518 – 275,000 enslaved Africans were exported to other countries3. Between 16th century and 19th century, approx. 10 million Africans shipped to the Americas
Hernan Cortes• Went into Mexico in 1518• Encountered the Aztecs• Brutally conquered and took power – became governor• Destroyed Tenochtitlan• Seen as a hero to some and as a villain to others
Francisco Pizarro• Went into Panama with Balboa in 1513• Took an interest in conquests and riches• Went into South America around 1522 – went into Colombia and Ecuador• Best known for his brutal conquests in Peru in 1532• Natives were already there, (the Inca)• Destroyed Inca culture and society• Was killed by angry natives in 1541
Amerigo Vespucci• Went into the Americas• Chronicled his voyages with letters• Named America (after ‘Amerigo’)
Spain vs. Portugal• Spain vs. Portugal – Portugal believed that Spain reached Asia and that Columbus claimed lands that the Portuguese might have reached first – Pope Alexander VI divided the land between the two nations – He drew the Line of Demarcation: imaginary North/South line that gave lands on the east to Portugal and the lands on the west to Spain• In 1494 Spain and Portugal signed the Treaty of Tordesillas: they agreed to honor the line
Trading Empires in the Indian Ocean• Portugal – Built huge trading empire by capturing many Muslim owned lands (with help from cannons mounted on their ships) • (Straits of Hormuz, Goa, Strait of Malacca, Spice Islands) • By capturing these Muslim-owned lands, the Portuguese broke the Italian-Muslim domination of trade and sold goods at 1/5 the cost
(cont’d)• English and Dutch – 1600 they began to challenge Portugal – Dutch owned the largest fleet of ships with 20,000 vessels – Both formed East India Company to establish and direct trade throughout Asia. Also could mint money, make treaties, and raise armies.
(cont’d)• Dutch East India Company eventually drove out the English and established dominance over the region• By 1700, Dutch ruled much of Indonesia, the Spice Islands, and the Cape of Good Hope
(cont’d)• French – Established its own East India Company – It struggled at first, faced attacks from the Dutch, eventually establish output in India – **Although Europeans took control of many port cities their influence rarely spread beyond the ports
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