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Portugal in the Age of Discovery.docx

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Introduction We intend to embark on a project focusing on Portugal at its peak as a society during the Age of Discovery, starting from the beginning of the Portuguese Empire till the decline of the Portuguese monopoly, during the years 1415-1542. We are of the opinion that during this time, the Portuguese civilization was going through a period of achievement and progress as it did have an extensive colonial trading empire throughout the world backed by a powerful Thalassocracy and became a major European power. This however ended as the monopoly in economy, politics and culture was broke by other rising European countries. On that era, Portugal was one of the countries which led Europe into the Age of Discovery. The Age of Discovery was basically the period of time in which the countries in Europe realized that it was of a great need to start searching for "new" part of the world. However, this is proven to be beneficial in constructing modern Europe, in particular Portugal, as we can see in today's Portugal as a leading power in Europe. Out of the 4 'C's, we intend to prove that Commerce was the primary reason that led to the success of the Portuguese Empire during this period. ...read more.


Education, which was managed by the clergies, played an important role in the Portuguese education. This created the drive for Christianity and the fierce zeal to promote it to all the parts of the world. On the time of the Age of Discovery, Church is the highest authority in Portugal. Many aspects of the country were strictly under the control of the clergies and the Church. Undoubtedly, one of the key successes of Portugal is the fact that they mastered the art of global navigation skill which was essential for every expedition. As the domino effect of the good education managed by the clergies, it came out to provide Portugal with masters in navigation. Prince Henry the Navigator (1394-1460) promoted navigation by establishing a Colonial and Naval Institute in 14371. This gave advantage to Portugal because by mastering the skill of navigation, which was further supported by advanced knowledge of Science and Maths, their expeditions would be more effective compared to their rivals such as Spain. Conflict The trading conflict with Spain spurred the Portuguese on to progress and to conquer more lands for them to set up markets to sell their goods. ...read more.


This was considered as the benefit of Conflicts. In the end, every 'C's that are linked to the exploration were beneficial to the Portugal's Commerce aspect. Conclusion As elaborated above, it is clear that it always links to and fro Commerce as the underlying basis for the success of the Portuguese community. In all the above points, most of the points were originated from Commerce. Therefore, it is actually Commerce that has really impacted the Portuguese and brought it one step higher in the Age of Discovery. Nevertheless, it also introduced a long-term effect to Portugal because it has built a strong foundation for the economic development of Portugal. In this case, we define success by weighing the commercial development of the country. However, it is not limited such that on that time, Portugal managed to conquer more than 3/4 part of the world. This could also be considered as a success based on the number of colonies. After all, we arrive to the conclusion that each and every factor listed above from all the 4 'C's have helped Portugal to reach its level of success not only in the time of Age of Discovery but also currently. However, we are still firm with the opinion that Commerce is the major cause and motive for Portugal's success. ...read more.

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