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The state of the world in 1492

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  1. 1. The Grand Tour: Europe  Ferdinand of Aragon and Isabella of Castile marriage yields the beginning of a united peninsula when the last Muslim kingdom in Iberia, Granada, is conquered.   Ruler of France; Lorenzo de Medici, dies which disrupts the balance of power among the small states comprising the Italian peninsula. This prompts Charles VIII of France to invade the peninsula.   Alexander VI, the notorious pope from Aragon begins his reign in Rome.   Ivan III the Great is recognized as the ruler "of all the Russians" and the Orthodox Metropolitan (bishop) of Moscow proclaimed Moscow the "Third Rome."   Casimir IV, king of Poland and grand duke of Lithuania dies.   Laszlo II of Hungary fights against encroaching Ottoman Turks.   Sweden, Denmark, and Norway were unite in the Kolmar Union under Sten Sture I, the Elder.
  2. 2. The Grand Tour: Turkey to Africa  Istanbul becomes the largest metropolis in the Mediterranean basin with a population over 100,000.  Islam remains the only religion established throughout the length of the ecumene spreading as far as South of Spain to China and the Philippines.  Spain expels Jews, roughly 180,000 people.  North Africa is dominated by Islam. The edict went public during the week of April 29, 1492. The charter declared that no Jews were permitted to remain within the Spanish Kingdom, and any Jew who wished to convert was welcomed to stay.
  3. 3. The Grand Tour: South Asia  Islam makes great advances in the Malay Archipelago. Sultan Mahmud helped in the continuing spread of Islam. His Port of Malacca was considered to be perhaps the greatest in the world at that time. This led Islam to spread to the Javanese trading post and the “Spice Islands” which is part of today’s Indonesia.  In Thailand, ruler Rama Thibada was the first of his dynasty to grant trading privileges to the Portuguese.  Most of India is under Islam domination except for the Hindu Kingdom of Vijayanagar in the south.  Muslim Sultan, Sikandar resides in Delhi.
  4. 4. The Grand Tour: China and Japan China Japan  Emperor of China, Xiao-zong (Hsiao-  Japans former emperor had lost control tsungj)was locked in a battle with Confucian to the Ashikaga shogunate who bureaucracy. remained in power for a very small  China makes completion of the Great Wall time, by 1493 warlords had drove top priority due to the fear of invaders by Shogun Yoshitane from his capital. land to the north.  China abandons virtually all naval activity  Yet Japan had remained independent and exploration endeavors. China becomes of Chinese domination. more isolated and because of it’s non missionary religion, has no reason to put effort into interacting with the rest of the world.
  5. 5. The Grand Tour: The Western Hemisphere  The 8th leader of the Aztecs, Reverend Speaker Ahuitzotl was extending the confederation of the Triple Alliance through Mesoamerica.  The Inca, under the rule of Tupac Inca-qui, consolidated a unified empire that spanned a coastal distance of over 2,500 miles stretching from the present Columbia-Ecuador border to central Chile. They had constructed a transportation system of 7,000 miles of imperial roads which linked the empire together.  The Mayan civilization had no centralized authority and the city of Mayapan’s 12,000 inhabitants was only one of 16 communities that shared the Yucatan peninsula.
  6. 6. The Staff of Life  China is the most prosperous area in the world in 1492 due to its ability to keep its citizens well fed.  In Mesoamerica, with corn being the staple of its peoples diet and the little attention needed for corn to be produced, they are able to focus more time on the building of vast pyramid-temple-palace complexes, roads, and hydraulic works.  In 1492 Chinas population is estimated at over 100 million, The Mediterranean area 60 to 70 million, and in the Americas populations are estimated to be at over 80 million during this time.  With the discovery of the Americas in 1492, the eastern hemisphere had begun to inundate the New World with their crops and beasts. While this made for new access to food resources it would have disastrous effects on the native population of the Americas when between three-quarters and nine-tenths of the native population died during the next century due to disease brought by Europeans.