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The Age of Exploration

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THE AGE OF EXPLORATION Countries along the Atlantic seaboard were the leader in exploration these included Spain, Portugal and later England, France and the Netherlands. They all started exploring for one reason to find a quick and easy way to the Far East that provided them with silks, spices, and other valuable Chinese and Japanese products. They all knew about these wonderful products through the stories of Marco Polo but were unable to trade directly with the Far East. The Moslem distributor controlled the direct land and water routes between India and the Mediterranean. The long overland route through central Asia was impractical for regular use. The Italians had a monopoly over the Eastern trade route and were happy with it even though the distributor took most of the profits. Before the 1400's governments did not get involved in exploration as they had been in the middle of the crusades and could not afford the manpower or expenses that would accompany it. ...read more.


2 The ships were also improved by new arrangements of sail and masts that permitted the ship to be larger. The steering oar was replaced by a rudder, with the overall boat being narrower improving its speed, maneuverability and performance. Sailors' confidence improved as they past points were there boats were supposed to burst into flames, fall off the earth as well as numerous other myths about the oceans that did not come true. Maps, charts, and tables improved. By the early 1500's useful maps of Africa, South Asia, South America and the Caribbean existed. Soon maps of west Africa, India, Newfoundland, and the West Indies existed. Maps were also becoming less distorted by drawing areas around equator in proper proportions while extreme northern and southern areas are distorted. This is compensated for by two polar projections in the corners.3 With the invention of the printing press more people learned about these discoveries, and were quicker to join the ever increasing rush to stake claims in the new world. ...read more.


which allowed for better speed and maneuverability -invention of printing press led to people learning about discoveries quicker Political -governments started to get involved, they could not afford it before Explorers: Prince Henry the Navigator -founded naval institute in Portugal in 1436 -funded ships that discovered Cape Verde Islands and the Azores Christopher Columbus -discovered San Salvador(in the Bahaman Islands), Cuba, Puerto Rico, Jamaica, Leeward Islands, Trinidad the South American continent, and Panama Amerigo Vespucci -traveled to Americas in 1501, figured out astronomically that it was not Japan but an unknown continent, wrote his conclusions in a letter-his stories were more interesting -maps published with his name on it-mapmaker made a mistake but could not correct it Ferdinad Magellan -first voyage around the world (265 sailors and 5 boats started journey only 18 men and 1 ship survived) took just under 3 years Effects -countries on Atlantic dominated over the Mediterranean countries, furnishings, utensils -Inca and Aztec empires crumble, USA gets stared -European countries had highest standard of living -able to defeat other civilizations . ...read more.

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