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The Beginnings of Our Global Age: Europe, Africa, and
Around the World and Into History
In 1519, a fleet of five Spanish ships with more than 250 crew sailed from Spain. Ferdinand
Magellan, the captain, had been commissioned to sail around the Americas to the Spice
Islands. Three years later, a single battered ship limped back into a Spanish harbor. On
board were just 18 malnourished, skeletal sailors, so weak they could barely walk.
Magellan and all but one of the ship's officers had perished. The survivors told an amazing
tale. One recorded in his journal:
"From the time we left that bay ... until the present day, we had sailed 14,460 leagues [nearly
60,000 miles], and furthermore had completed the circumnavigation of the world from east
to west.”
Listen to the Witness History audio to hear more bout this historic voyage.
A Portuguese painting from 1522 tells the story of the martyrdom of Ursula, a medieval Catholic saint. The
religious story and the ;ailing ships in the background express the heroes of the age of exploration.
Chapter Preview
Chapter Focus Question How did European voyages of exploration lead to European !empires
in the Eastern Hemisphere?
Section 1
The Search for Spices
Section 2
Turbulent Centuries in Africa
Section 3
European Footholds in South and Southeast Asia
A pottery dish in the Muslim Spanish style shows a nao, light sailing ship developed in the 1400s.
Chinese silk robe from the Qing dynasty
Section 4
Encounters in East Asia
Note Taking Study Guide Online
For: Note Taking and Concept Connector worksheets Web Code: nbd-1401
the Search Is On
Cinnamon, pepper, nutmeg, cloves ... these and ether spices were a vital part of the world
economy in the 1400s. Because the spice trade was controlled by Arab merchants and
traders, Europeans didn't know how to get the spices they desperately wanted. Even when
Europeans learned that spice plants could be obtained in Asia, they didn't have a hope of
growing them in Europe. As an Indonesian ruler boasted to a European trader,
may be able to take our plants, but you will never be able to take our rain.”
Europeans knew that the only way they could take control of the spice trade would be to
establish sea routes to Asia—at any cost.
Focus Question How did the search for spices lead to global exploration?
A French traveler in the 1400s illustrated workers harvesting pepper in southern India; a clove plant is shown at
The Search for Spices
- Understand
European motivations for exploring the seas.
- Analyze early Portuguese and
- Describe European
searches for a direct route to Asia.
Terms, People, and Places
Spanish explorations.
Prince Henry
Vasco da Gama
Christopher Columbus
Line of Demarcation
Treaty of Tordesillas
Ferdinand Magellan
Note Taking
Reading Skill: Identify Causes and Effects Examine the text for clues that signal cause and
effect. Then use a flowchart like this one to record major causes and effects of European
Throughout history, groups of people—from the ancient Greeks to Muslim Arabs and the
Vikings of Scandinavia—had explored the seas, trading and migrating over long distances.
The European sailors of the 1400s began a dramatic new period of exploration.
Motivations for Exploring the Seas
Europeans traded with Asians long before the Renaissance. The Crusades introduced
Europeans to many luxury goods from Asia, carried on complex overland routes through
the Mongol empire of the 1200s and 1300s. The Black Death and the breakup of the
Mongol empire disrupted that trade. By the 1400s, though, Europe's population was
growing, along with its demand for trade goods. The most valued items were spices, used
to preserve food, add flavor to meat, and make medicines and perfumes. The chief source
of spices was the Moluccas, an island chain in present-day Indonesia, which Europeans
then called the Spice Islands.
In the 1400s, Arab and Italian merchants controlled most trade between Asia and Europe.
Muslim traders brought prized goods to eastern Mediterranean ports, and Italian traders
carried them to European markets. Europeans outside Italy knew that it would be more
profitable to gain direct access to Asia. They were also driven by Renaissance curiosity to
seek new lands.
Checkpoint What factors encouraged European exploration?
Early Voyages of European Exploration, 1487-1609
Geography Interactive
For: Audio guided tour Web Code: nbp-1 411
Map Skills Spain, England, France, and the Netherlands quickly followed Portugal's lead in
exploring the world by ship
1. Locate (a) West Indies (b) East Indies (c) Line of Demarcation (d) Strait of Magellan
2. Describe Describe the route of Columbus.
3. Draw Inferences Why do you think explorers from different countries followed similar
Portugal Sails East
Prince Henry led the way in sponsoring exploration for Portugal, a small nation next to Spain.
First, Prince Henry's navigators discovered and claimed the Madeira and Azores islands to
the west and southwest of Portugal. By 1415, Portugal had expanded into Muslim North
Africa, seizing the port of Ceuta (SYOO tah) on the North African coast.
Mapping the African Coast Prince Henry saw great promise in Africa. The Portuguese could
convert the Africans—who practiced either Islam or tribal religions—to Christianity. He
also believed that in Africa he would find the sources of riches the Muslim traders
Finally, Prince Henry hoped to find an easier way to reach Asia, which meant going around
Africa. The Portuguese felt that with their expert knowledge and technology, they could
accomplish this feat. At Sagres, in southern Portugal, Henry gathered scientists,
cartographers, or map-makers, and other experts. They redesigned ships, prepared maps,
and trained captains and crews for long voyages. Henry's ships then slowly worked their
way south to explore the western coast of Africa.
Henry died in 1460, but the Portuguese continued their quest. In 1488, Bartholomeu Dias
rounded the southern tip of Africa. Despite the turbulent seas around it, the tip became
known as the Cape of Good Hope because it opened the way for a sea route to Asia.
Seeking India In 1497, Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama followed in Dias's footsteps,
leading four ships around the Cape of Good Hope, Da Gama, however, had plans to go
farther. After a ten-month voyage, da Gama reached the great spice port of Calicut on the
west coast of India. On the long voyage home, the Portuguese lost half their ships, and
many sailors died of hunger, thirst, and scurvy, a disease caused by a lack of vitamin C in
the diet.
Despite the hard journey, the venture proved highly profitable. In India, da Gama had acquired
a cargo of spices that he sold at an enormous profit. He quickly outfitted a new fleet,
seeking greater profits. In 1502, he forced a treaty on the ruler of Calicut. Da Gama then
left Portuguese merchants there whose job was to buy spices when prices were low and
store them until the next fleet could return. Soon, the Portuguese had seized key ports
around the Indian Ocean, creating a vast trading empire. Da Gama's voyages confirmed
Portugal's status as a world power.
Checkpoint How did Portuguese exploration lead to the creation of a trading empire?
In the 1400s, European knowledge of the world—and how to navigate it—greatly expanded.
Geographers gave navigators more accurate maps, and shipmakers built ships more
suitable for crossing the ocean. Navigators began to use existing instruments like the
compass and astrolabe in new ways. With each voyage, they added to their knowledge,
resulting in even better maps and improved technology.
The portolan map
Navigators used portolan maps with magnetic compasses. The lines on the portolan map
radiated out from compass points, showing navigators how to find their way to key ports.
A better compass
The Chinese had used the compass for centuries, but the magnetic compass did not become a
customary navigational tool until the 1400s. The magnetic compass uses an iron needle,
magnetized by a mineral called lodestone, that aligns with Earth's north-south poles.
Navigators used it to find their bearings and chart courses.
A more accurate world map
In the 1400s, world maps showed Europe accurately (far left) but the rest of the world as one
giant landmass. By 1560, the geographer Abraham Ortelius had produced a map (left) that
showed all of the continents with accurate shapes.
A faster ship
The light, fast caravel was developed in the 1400s. Unlike most heavy European ships, it was
easily maneuvered along coasts and could travel long distances.
A new use for an old tool
Astronomers had used astrolabes in ancient times. Renaissance sailors found them useful for
navigation. Navigators looked through the astrolabe at the sun or a star, and determined its
angle using the degrees marked on the instrument. The angle of the sun or star helped them
to determine their ships' latitude as well as the local time.
Thinking Critically
1. Synthesize Information Why would a portolan map be inappropriate as a resource for a
geography class?
2. Draw Inferences What limitations did the astrolabe have that the magnetic compass did not?
Columbus Sails West
News of Portugal's successes spurred other people to look for a sea route to Asia. An Italian
navigator from Genoa, named Christopher Columbus, wanted to reach the East Indies—a
group of islands in Southeast Asia, today part of Indonesia—by sailing west across the
Atlantic. Like most educated Europeans, Columbus knew that Earth was a sphere. A few
weeks sailing west, he reasoned, would bring a ship to eastern Asia. His plan made sense,
but Columbus greatly underestimated Earth's size. And he had no idea that two continents
lay in his path.
Reaching Faraway Lands Portugal refused to sponsor him, but Columbus persuaded
Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain to finance his voyage. To increase their authority, the
Spanish rulers had taken radical measures, including expelling Jews from Spain. They
hoped their actions would strengthen Catholicism. However, the loss of some of Spain's
most affluent and cultured people weakened the nation. The rulers hoped Columbus's
voyage would bring wealth and prestige.
Vocabulary Builder
authority—(uh THAWR uh tee) n. the power to give commands and enforce obedience
Henry the Navigator
All of the European explorers owed a debt to Prince Henry (1394-1460), whose Christian faith,
curiousity, and national pride ushered in the great age of European exploration. The
English nicknamed Henry "the Navigator." Yet Henry himself, who sponsored and
encouraged navigators, geographers, and merchants, never traveled the seas. Henry's work
required financial risks, and his enthusiasm motivated his navigators to take great personal
risks. Henry also inspired generations of later explorers. What characteristics does the
artist ascribe to Henry (center figure in black)?
On August 3, 1492, Columbus sailed west with three small ships, the Nina, the Pinta, and the
Santa Maria. Although the expedition encountered good weather and a favorable wind, no
land came into sight for many weeks. Provisions ran low, and the crew became anxious.
Finally, on October 12, land was spotted.
Columbus spent several months cruising the islands of the Caribbean. Because he thought he
had reached the Indies, he called the people of the region "Indians." In 1493, he returned to
Spain to a hero's welcome. In three later voyages, Columbus remained convinced that he
had reached the coast of East Asia. Before long, though, other Europeans realized that
Columbus had found a route to previously unknown continents.
Dividing the Globe in Half In 1493 Ferdinand and Isabella appealed to the Spanish-born Pope
Alexander VI to support their claim to the lands of the new world. The pope set a Line of
Demarcation, dividing the non-European world into two zones. Spain had trading and
exploration rights in any lands west of the line. Portugal had the same rights east of the
line. The specific terms of the Line of Demarcation were agreed to in the Treaty of
Tordesillas, signed between the two countries in 1494. The actual line was unclear,
because geography at the time was imprecise. However, the treaty made it obvious to both
Spain and Portugal—and to other European nations, eager to defy what they saw as Spain
and Portugal's arrogance—that they needed to build their own empires quickly.
Naming the Western Hemisphere An Italian sea captain named Amerigo Vespucci wrote a
journal describing his voyage to Brazil. In 1507, a German cartographer named Martin
Waldseemuller used Vespucci's descriptions of his voyage to publish a map of the region,
which he labeled "America." Over time, the term "Americas" came to be used for both
continents of the Western Hemisphere. The islands Columbus had explored in the
Caribbean became known as the West Indies.
Checkpoint How did Columbus influence the Treaty of Tordesillas?
The Search for a Direct Route Continues
Though Europeans had claimed vast new territories, they had not yet found a direct route to
Asia. The English, Dutch, and French explored the coast of North America unsuccessfully
for a "northwest passage," or a route from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific through the
Arctic islands. Meanwhile, in 1513 the Spanish adventurer Vasco Nunez de Balboa, helped
by local Indians, hacked a passage westward through the tropical forests of Panama. From
a ridge on the west coast, he gazed at a huge body of water. The body of water that he
named the South Sea was in fact the Pacific Ocean.
On September 20, 1519, a minor Portuguese nobleman named Ferdinand Magellan set out
from Spain with five ships to find a way to reach the Pacific. Magellan's ships sailed south
and west, through storms and calms and tropical heat. At last, his fleet reached the coast of
South America. Carefully, they explored each bay, hoping to find one that would lead to
the Pacific. In November 1520, Magellan's ships entered a bay at the southern tip of South
America. Amid brutal storms, rushing tides, and unpredictable winds, Magellan found a
passage that later became known as the Strait of Magellan. The ships emerged into
Balboa's South Sea. Magellan renamed the sea the Pacific, from the Latin word meaning
Their mission accomplished, most of the crew wanted to return to Spain the way they had
come. Magellan, however, insisted that they push on across the Pacific to the East Indies.
Magellan underestimated the size of the Pacific. Three more weeks, he thought, would
bring them to the Spice Islands. Magellan was wrong. For nearly four months, the ships
plowed across the uncharted ocean. Finally, in March 1521, the fleet reached the
Philippines, where Magellan was killed. On September 8, 1522, nearly three years after
setting out, the survivors—one ship and 18 sailors—reached Spain. The survivors had been
the first people to circumnavigate, or sail around, the world. Antonio Pigafetta, one of the
few survivors of the expedition, observed: "I believe of a certainty that no one will ever
again make such a voyage."
Checkpoint What was the significance of Balboa's discovery?
SECTION 1 Assessment
Progress Monitoring Online
For: Self-quiz with vocabulary practice Web Code: nba-1411
Terms, People, and Places
1. For each term, person, or place listed at the beginning of the section, write a sentence
explaining its significance.
Note Taking
2. Reading Skill: Identify Causes and Effects Use your completed flowchart to answer the
Focus Question: How did the search for spices lead to global exploration?
Comprehension and Critical Thinking
3. Recognize Cause and Effect How did the Renaissance motivate European explorers?
4. Recognize Ideologies How did Prince Henry's Christian faith shape his role as a sponsor of
5. Identify Alternatives If Columbus had understood the real geography of the world, would
he still have made his voyage? Why or why not?
6. Predict Consequences What effect might Magellan's circumnavigation of the world have on
English, Dutch, and French explorers?
Writing About History
Quick Write: Gather Information Choose one of the following people from this section for a
biographical essay: Prince Henry, Christopher Columbus, or Ferdinand Magellan. Gather
information about the person you chose. Note events that were both directly and indirectly
influenced by this person.
A Benin ivory carving (right) depicts a Portuguese sailor in a ship. Iron weights (top) were used in western Africa
to weigh gold.
Great Seabirds Arrive
A Portuguese captain named Alvise Cadamosto reached West Africa in the mid-1 400s. He
described the reaction of the West Africans to the sight of his ship:
is said that the first time they saw sails .. . they believed they were great seabirds with white
wings, which were flying and had come from some strange place.... Some thought the ships
were fishes, others that they were ghosts that went by night, at which they were terrified”
—Alvise Cadamosto,
Focus Question What effects did European exploration have on the people of Africa?
Turbulent Centuries in Africa
- Describe how
the Portuguese established footholds on Africa's coasts.
- Analyze how
European actions affected the slave trade and the rise of African states.
- Explain
how the European presence in Africa expanded.
Terms, People, and Places
Affonso I
Asante kingdom
Osei Tutu
Oyo empire
Cape Town
Note Taking
Reading Skill: Identify Effects As you read, record effects of European exploration in Africa
in a chart like the one below.
European encounters with Africa had occurred for hundreds of years. Yet the European
explorers who arrived in the 1400s brought great and unforeseen changes to Africa's
peoples and cultures.
Portugal Gains Footholds
As you have read, the Portuguese who explored Africa's coasts in the 1400s were looking for a
sea route to Asia that bypassed the Mediterranean. They also wanted to buy goods directly
from their source, rather than trading through Arab middlemen.
The Portuguese began carrying out their strategy in West Africa, building small forts to collect
food and water and to repair their ships. They also established trading posts to trade
muskets, tools, and cloth for gold, ivory, hides, and slaves. These were not colonies
peopled by settlers. Instead, the Portuguese left just enough men and firepower to defend
their forts.
From West Africa, the Portuguese sailed around the continent. They continued to establish forts
and trading posts, but they also attacked existing East African coastal cities such as
Mombasa and Malindi, which were hubs of international trade. With cannons blazing,
they expelled the Arabs who controlled the East African trade network and took over this
thriving commerce for themselves. Each conquest added to their growing trade empire.
Over the next two centuries, some Portuguese explorers managed to reach parts of present-day
Congo, Zambia, and Zimbabwe, establishing limited trade. In general, however, the
Portuguese did not venture far from the coasts. They knew little about Africa's interior, and
they lacked accurate maps or other resources to help them explore there. Furthermore,
Africans in the interior, who wanted to control the gold trade, resisted such exploration. As
a result of all these factors, when the Portuguese empire declined in the 1600s, the
Portuguese did not leave a strong legacy in Africa.
Checkpoint Why did the Portuguese establish a presence mainly along the African coast?
The African Slave Trade Explodes
In the 1500s and 1600s, Europeans began to view slaves as the most important item of African
trade. Slavery had existed in Africa, as elsewhere around the world, since ancient times.
Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, Persians, Indians, and Aztecs often enslaved defeated foes.
The English word slave comes from the large number of Slays taken from southern Russia
to work as unpaid laborers in Roman times.
The Arab empire also used slave labor, often African captives. In the Middle East, enslaved
Africans worked on farming estates or large-scale irrigation projects. Others became
artisans, soldiers, or merchants. Some rose to prominence in the Muslim world even
though they were slaves.
Europeans Enter the Slave Trade Portuguese traders quickly joined the profitable slave trade,
followed by other European traders. Europeans bought large numbers of slaves to perform
labor on their plantations—large estates run by an owner or an owner's overseer—in the
Americas and elsewhere. Europeans also bought slaves as exotic servants for rich
households. By the 1500s, European participation had encouraged a much broader Atlantic
slave trade.
Europeans seldom went into Africa's interior to take part in slave raids. Instead, they relied on
African rulers and traders to seize captives in the interior and bring them to coastal trading
posts and forts. There, the captives were exchanged for textiles, metalwork, rum, tobacco,
weapons, and
gunpowder. Over the next 300 years, the slave trade grew into a huge and profitable business to
fill the need for cheap labor. Each year, traders shipped tens of thousands of enslaved
Africans across the Atlantic to work on sugar, rice, tobacco, and other plantations in the
Americas. These slaves were considered to be property, and they had no hope of bettering
their situations.
African Leaders Resist Some African leaders tried to slow down or stop the transatlantic slave
trade. But in the end, the system that supported the trade was simply too strong for them.
An early voice raised against the slave trade was that of Affonso I, ruler of Kongo in westcentral Africa. As a young man, Affonso had been tutored by Portuguese missionaries,
who hoped to convert Africans to Christianity.
A Valuable Commodity
Since ancient times, gold was a valuable trade good in western Africa. Beginning in the 1500s,
it became an important part of the slave trade. Europeans melted down African gold
jewelry like the pieces above to make gold coins.
A Portuguese observer described the first ship of African slaves arriving in Portugal in 1444
from West Africa. Judging from the writer's words, what was his opinion of what he saw?
Primary Source
kept their heads low and their faces bathed in tears, looking at each other ... others
struck themselves in the face and threw themselves to the ground; and others sang sad
songs—although we did not understand their words, the sound told of their great sorrow....
The mothers threw themselves flat on the ground. They were beaten but they refused to
give up their children.”
Chronicle of the Discovery and Conquest of Guinea
Map Skills By about 1700, many of Africa's states and kingdoms were involved in the slave
1. Locate (a) Malindi (b) Kongo (c) Asante (d) Bornu
2. Describe Which states were part of a major slave trading region?
3. Synthesize Information In general, where were most slave trading regions located? Explain.
Geography Interactive
For: Audio guided tour Web Code: nbp-1421
Vocabulary Builder
dominate—(DAHM uh nayt) v. to rule or control by superior power
Vocabulary Builder
unified—(YOO null fyd) u. combined into one
After becoming king in 1505, he called on the Portuguese to help him develop Kongo as a
modern Christian state. But he became alarmed as more and more Portuguese came to
Kongo each year to buy slaves. Affonso wanted to maintain contact with Europe but end
the slave trade. His appeal failed, and the slave trade continued.
In the late 1700s, another African ruler tried to halt the slave trade in his lands. He was the
almany (from the Arabic words meaning "religious leader") of Futa Toro, in present-day
Senegal. Since the 1500s, French sea captains had bought slaves from African traders in
Futa Toro. In 1788, the almany forbade anyone to transport slaves through Futa Toro for
sale abroad. However, the inland slave traders simply worked out a new route to the coast.
Sailing to this new market, the French captains easily purchased the slaves that the almany
had prevented them from buying in Futa Toro.
Checkpoint How did the African slave trade expand?
New African States Arise
The slave trade had major effects on African states in the 1600s and 1700s. In West Africa, for
example, the loss of countless numbers of young women and men resulted in some small
states disappearing forever. At the same time, there arose new states whose way of life
depended on the slave trade. The rulers of these powerful new states waged war against
other Africans to dominate the slave trade.
The Asante Kingdom The Asante kingdom (uh SAHN teh) emerged in the area occupied by
present-day Ghana. In the late 1600s, an able military leader, Osei Tutu, won control of
the trading city of Kumasi. From there, he conquered neighboring peoples and unified the
Asante kingdom. The Asante faced a great challenge in the Denkyera, a powerful
neighboring enemy kingdom. Osei Tutu realized that in order to withstand the Denkyera,
the people of his kingdom needed to be firmly united. To do this, he claimed that his right
to rule came from heaven, and that people in the kingdom were linked by spiritual bonds.
This strategy paid off when the Asante defeated the Denkyera in the late 1600s.
Under Osei Tutu, government officials, chosen by merit rather than by birth, supervised an
efficient bureaucracy. They managed the royal monopolies on gold mining and the slave
trade. A monopoly is the exclusive control of a business or industry. The Asante traded
with Europeans on the coast, exchanging gold and slaves for firearms. They also played
rival Europeans against one another to protect themselves. In this way, they built a
wealthy, powerful state.
The Oyo Empire The Oyo empire arose from successive waves of settlement by the Yoruba
people of present-day Nigeria. It began as a relatively small forest kingdom. Beginning in
the late 1600s, however, its leaders used wealth from the slave trade to build up an
impressive army. The Oyo empire used the army to conquer the neighboring kingdom of
Dahomey. At the same time, it continued to gain wealth by trading with European
merchants at the port city of Porto-Novo.
Checkpoint What caused some African states to grow?
The European Presence Expands
Following the Portuguese example, by the 1600s several European powers had established forts
along the western coast of Africa. As Portuguese power declined in the region, British,
Dutch, and French traders took over their forts. Unlike the Portuguese, they established
permanent footholds throughout the continent.
In 1652, Dutch immigrants arrived at the southern tip of the continent. They built Cape Town,
the first permanent European settlement, to supply ships sailing to or from the East Indies.
Dutch farmers, called Boers, settled around Cape Town. Over time, they ousted, enslaved,
or killed the people who lived there. The Boers held a Calvinist belief that they were the
elect, or chosen, of God. They looked on Africans as inferiors and did not respect their
claims to their own land. In the 1700s, Boer herders and ivory hunters began to push north
from the Cape Colony. Their migrations would eventually lead to battle with several
African groups.
By the mid-1600s, the British and French had both reached present-day Senegal. The French
established a fort in the region around 1700. In the late 1700s, stories about British
explorers' search for the source of the Nile River sparked an interest in Africa among
Europeans, especially the French and British. In 1788, the British established the African
Association, an organization that sponsored explorers to Africa. Over the next century,
European exploration of Africa would explode.
Checkpoint How did the European presence in Africa expand?
Elmina Castle
European traders called the places where they held and traded slaves "castles." Built by the
Portuguese in 1482, Elmina Castle in present-day Ghana was used as a base for trading
slaves, gold, and imported European products.
SECTION 2 Assessment
Progress Monitoring Online
For: Self-quiz with vocabulary practice Web Code: nba-1421
Terms, People, and Places
1. What do many of the key terms and people listed at the beginning of the section have in
common? Explain.
Note Taking
2. Reading Skill: Identify Effects Use your completed chart to answer the Focus Question:
What effects did European exploration have on the people of Africa?
Comprehension and Critical Thinking
3. Determine Relevance How did the Portuguese strategy of building forts instead of
permanent colonies affect Portugal's history in Africa?
4. Recognize Cause and Effect How did Europeans change the nature of African slavery?
5. Analyze Information Why did the Asante and Oyo need to trade with Europeans to
maintain power?
6. Predict Consequences Would the Europeans have taken the same course in Africa if the
people there had been Christian like themselves?
Writing About History
Quick Write: Write a Thesis Statement Write a thesis statement that will support a
biographical essay about either Osei Tutu or Affonso I. Remember that the facts and events
you cite in your essay should support your thesis statement. For example, the following
thesis statement is not supported by the facts in the text: Affonso was instrumental in
slowing the slave trade in Africa.
King Affonso I:
Letter to King John III of Portugal
In 1490, the Portuguese converted the son of a Kongo king to Christianity and then helped him
take his father's throne. The new king, born Nzinga Mbemba, was renamed Affonso. King
Affonso soon realized that his relationship with Portugal had extremely negative
consequences, as can be seen from his letter to King John III of Portugal in 1526. In this
letter, the king of Kongo appeals to the king of Portugal to end the slave trade.
Sir, Your Highness of Portugal should know how our Kingdom is being lost in so many ways.
This is caused by the excessive freedom given by your officials to the men and merchants
who are allowed to come to this Kingdom to set up shops with goods and many things
which have been prohibited by us. Many of our vassals, whom we had in obedience, do not
comply 1 because they have the things in greater abundance than we ourselves. It was with
these things that we had them content and subjected under our jurisdiction 2, so it is doing a
great harm not only to the service of God, but to the security and peace of our Kingdoms
and State as well.
And we cannot reckon how great the damage is, since the mentioned merchants are taking
every day our natives, sons of the land and the sons of our noblemen and vassals and our
relatives. The thieves and men of bad conscience grab them wishing to have the things and
wares of this Kingdom which they are ambitious of; they grab them and get them to be
sold. And so great, Sir, is the corruption and licentiousness 3 that our country is being
completely depopulated, and your Highness should not agree with this nor accept it as in
your service. And to avoid it we need from those your Kingdoms no more than some
priests and a few people to teach in schools, and no other goods except wine and flour for
the holy sacrament.
That is why we beg of Your Highness to help and assist us in this matter, commanding your
factors 4 that they should not send here either merchants or wares, because it is our will that
in these kingdoms there should not be any trade of slaves nor outlet for them. Concerning
what is referred to above, again we beg of Your Highness to agree with it otherwise we
cannot remedy such an obvious damage.
1. comply (kum PLY) v. agree to a request
2. jurisdiction (joor is D1K shun) n. area of authority or power
3. licentiousness (ly SEN shun nis) n. lack of morality
4. factors (FAK turs) n. agents
A Congolese brass and wood crucifix dating from the 1 500s blends Christian and traditional African symbols.
Thinking Critically
1. Identify Causes What does King Affonso believe has caused his vassals to become
2. Analyze Information What specifically does King Affonso say he still needs from the
Gunfire Over Malacca
In 1511, a Portuguese fleet commanded by Afonso de Albuquerque (AL buh kur kee) dropped
anchor off Malacca, a rich Islamic trading port that controlled the sea route linking India,
Southeast Asia, and China. The fleet remained at anchor for several weeks before opening
fire. According to a Malaysian account:
"The cannon balls came like rain. And the noise of the cannon was as the noise of thunder in
the heavens and the flashes of fire of their guns were like flashes of lightning in the sky:
and the noise of their matchlocks [guns] was like that of groundnuts [peanuts] popping in
the frying pan.”
the Malay Annals
Focus Question How did European nations build empires in South and Southeast Asia?
European Footholds in South and Southeast Asia
- Summarize how
Portugal built a trading empire in South and Southeast Asia.
- Analyze the
rise of Dutch and Spanish dominance in the region.
- Understand
how the decline of Mughal India affected European traders in the region.
Terms, People, and Places
Afonso de Albuquerque
Mughal empire
Dutch East India Company
Note Taking
Reading Skill: Identify Causes and Effects As you read this section, fill in a chart like the
one below with the causes and effects of European exploration in South and Southeast
Portugal was the first European power to gain a foothold in Asia. The Portuguese ships were
small in size and number, but the firepower of their shipboard cannons was unmatched. In
time, this superior firepower helped them win control of the rich Indian Ocean spice trade
and build a trading empire in Asia.
Portugal Builds an Eastern Empire
After Vasco da Gama's voyage, the Portuguese, under Afonso de Albuquerque's command,
burst into the Indian Ocean. By that time, Muslim rulers, originally from central Asia, had
established the Mughal empire throughout much of India. The southern regions of India,
however, were still controlled by a patchwork of local princes. The Portuguese won these
princes to their side with promises of aid against other Europeans. With these southern
footholds, Albuquerque and the Portuguese hoped to end Muslim power and turn the
Indian Ocean into a "Portuguese lake."
A Rim of Trading Outposts In 1510, the Portuguese seized the island of Goa off the coast of
India, making it their major military and commercial base. Albuquerque burned coastal
towns and crushed Arab fleets at sea. The Portuguese took the East Indies port of Malacca
in 1511, massacring the city's Muslims.
In less than 50 years, the Portuguese had built a trading empire with military and merchant
outposts, or distant areas under their control, rimming the southern seas. They used the
cities they had seized on the east coast of Africa to resupply and repair their ships. For
most of the 1500s, Portugal controlled the spice trade between Europe and Asia.
A Limited Impact Despite their sea power, the Portuguese lacked resources and faced too
much resistance to make great inroads into the region. They made harsher efforts to
convert local people to Christianity than they had in Africa, attacking Muslims and
destroying Hindu temples. Still, by 1600 the Portuguese had converted fewer than a million
people to Christianity. The conversion rate was especially low among Asian Muslims.
Checkpoint How did the Portuguese control the spice trade?
Rise of the Dutch
The Dutch were the first Europeans to challenge Portuguese domination of Asian trade. The
land we know today as the Netherlands included a group of provinces and prosperous
trading cities on the North Sea. In the early 1500s it was part of the Holy Roman Empire,
but later the Protestant northern provinces won independence. The independent
Netherlands entered vigorously into competition for overseas influence.
Building a Mighty Sea Power In 1599, a Dutch fleet returned to Amsterdam from Asia after
more than a year's absence. It carried a cargo of pepper, cloves, and other spices. The
success of this voyage led to a frenzy of overseas activity. Soon Dutch warships and
trading vessels had made the Netherlands a leader of European commerce. Dutch power set
up colonies and trading posts around the world. With their strategic settlement at Cape
Town, the Netherlands had a secure foothold in the region.
A Powerful Dutch Company In 1602, a group of wealthy Dutch merchants formed the Dutch
East India Company. From the beginning, this company had an unusual amount of
power. Unlike Portuguese and Spanish traders, whose expeditions, were tightly controlled
by government, the Dutch East India Company had full sovereign powers. With its power
to build armies, wage war, negotiate peace treaties, and govern overseas territory, it came
to dominate the region.
Vocabulary Builder
strategic—(struh TEE jik) adj. important to carrying out a plan of action
Different Perspectives
A European artist (right) shows the king of Sri Lanka and a Dutch explorer meeting as equals.
In the Indian painting to the left, Europeans are shown as vassals bringing gifts to India's
ruler. How did European and Asian artists bring their own perspectives to early
Symbols of the Dutch Empire
The Dutch painting Jacob Mathieusen and His Wife (c. 1650) shows a senior official in the
Dutch East India Company overlooking the Dutch fleet in Batavia, Indonesia. A slave
holds a parasol, an Asian symbol of power. How can you tell that the artist was European?
Asserting Dutch Dominance In 1641, the Dutch captured Malacca from the Portuguese and
opened trade with China. Soon they were able to enforce a monopoly in the Spice Islands,
controlling shipments to Europe as well as much of the trade within Southeast Asia. Like
the Portuguese, the Dutch used military force to further their trading goals. Yet they forged
closer ties with local rulers than the Portuguese had. Many Dutch merchants married Asian
In the 1700s, the growing power of England and France contributed to the decline of the Dutch
trading empire in the East. Still, the Dutch maintained an empire in Indonesia until the
Checkpoint How did the Dutch build up a strong presence in Southeast Asia?
Spain Seizes the Philippines
While the Portuguese and Dutch set up bases on the fringes of Asia, Spain took over the
Philippines. Magellan had claimed the archipelago for Spain in 1521. Within about 50
years, Spain had conquered and colonized the islands, renaming them for the Spanish king
Philip II. Unlike most other peoples of Southeast Asia, the Filipinos were not united. As a
result, they could be conquered more easily.
In the spirit of the Catholic Reformation, Spanish priests set out to convert the Filipino people
to Christianity. Later, missionaries from the Philippines tried to spread Catholic teachings
in China and Japan.
The Philippines became a key link in Spain's overseas trading empire. The Spanish shipped
silver mined in Mexico and Peru across the Pacific to the Philippines. From there, they
used the silver to buy goods in China. In this way, large quantities of American silver
flowed into the economies of East Asian nations.
Checkpoint Why was Spain able to conquer the Philippines easily?
An Indian Sepoy
An Indian officer in the British army poses with his wife in this Indian painting dating from the
Mughal India and European Traders
For two centuries, the Mughal empire had enjoyed a period of peace, strength, and prosperity.
European merchants were dazzled by India's splendid Mughal court and its many luxury
A Center of Valuable Trade Mughal India was the center of the valuable spice trade. It was
also the world leader in textile manufacturing, exporting large quantities of silk and cotton
cloth. The Mughal empire was larger, richer, and more powerful than any kingdom in
Europe. When Europeans sought trading rights, Mughal emperors saw no threat in granting
them. The Portuguese—and later the Dutch, English, and French—thus were permitted to
build forts and warehouses in Indian coastal towns.
A Great Empire Shatters Over time, the Mughal empire weakened. Conflicts between Hindu
and Muslim princes rekindled. Years of civil war drained Mughal resources. Rulers then
increased taxes, sparking rebellions. Corruption became widespread, and the central
government collapsed. As Mughal power faltered, French and English traders fought for
power. Like the Dutch, both the British and the French had established East India
companies. These companies made alliances with local officials and independent rajahs, or
local chiefs. Each company organized its own army of sepoys, or Indian troops.
By the mid-1700s, the British and the French had become locked in a bitter struggle for global
power. The fighting involved both nations' lands in Asia and the Americas. In India, the
British East India Company used an army of British troops and sepoys to drive out the
French. The company then forced the Mughal emperor to recognize its right to collect
taxes in the northeast. By the late 1700s, it had used its great wealth to dominate most of
Checkpoint How did Britain gain control of India?
SECTION 3 Assessment
Progress Monitoring Online
For: Self-quiz with vocabulary practice Web Code: nba-1431
Terms, People, and Places
1. For each term, person, or place listed at the beginning of the section, write a sentence
explaining its significance.
Note Taking
2. Reading Skill: Identify Causes and Effects Use your completed flowchart to answer the
Focus Question: How did European nations build empires in South and Southeast Asia?
Comprehension and Critical Thinking
3. Draw Inferences You read that the Portuguese did not attempt to conquer inland territory.
What does that tell you about their assessment of the inland empires?
4. Analyze Information Why did the leaders of the Netherlands give so much power to the
Dutch East India Company?
5. Identify Central Issues What about the location of the Philippines made it a valuable asset
for Spain?
6. Identify Assumptions The Mughal empire gave trading rights to several European
countries. What assumptions about the power of those countries does this show?
Writing About History
Quick Write: Present Evidence to Support a Thesis Write a biographical essay about
Afonso de Albuquerque. First, think of a thesis statement that describes the main points
you want to make. Then write the main body text, referring frequently to your thesis
statement. The details in a biographical essay should directly support your main point. For
example, if your thesis is that Albuquerque was a violent man, you would include details
about his takeover of Malacca.
A Chinese watercolor portrays Matteo Ricci with European objects, including a model of the universe. A
geography book that Ricci translated into Chinese is shown at the top.
A Jesuit in China
In 1583, a young Jesuit priest arrived in China. He had studied Chinese and immediately
impressed Chinese rulers with his fluency as well as his knowledge of European science.
Matteo Ricci recognized that the Chinese would not accept a European religion "unless it
be seasoned with an intellectual flavoring." In his nearly 30 years in China, Ricci translated
five European books into Chinese. Ricci adopted Chinese dress and established friendships
with Confucian scholars. When he died in 1610 at age 58, he was buried near the emperor.
Much of Europe's knowledge about China came from Ricci's writings.
Focus Question How were European encounters in East Asia shaped by the worldviews of
both Europeans and Asians?
Encounters in East Asia
- Describe European
- Understand
contacts with Ming China.
the Manchu conquest and its impact on European trade.
- Analyze the
factors that led Korea to isolate itself from other nations.
- Summarize Japan's
attitudes toward foreign trade and how they changed over time.
Terms, People, and Places
Matteo Ricci
Lord Macartney
Note Taking
Reading Skill: Understand Effects Fill in a chart like the one below with effects of European
contacts in East Asia.
Portuguese ships first reached China from their base in Malacca in 1514. To the Chinese, the
Portuguese, like other foreigners, were barbarians. Europeans, by contrast, wrote
enthusiastically about China. In 1590, a visitor described Chinese artisans "cleverly making
devices out of gold, silver and other metals," and wrote with approval: "They daily publish
huge multitudes of books."
European Contact With Ming China
European interest in China and other parts of East Asia continued to grow. The Ming, however,
had no interest in Europe—since, as a Ming document proclaimed, "our empire owns the
The Ming Limit Trade The Portuguese wanted Chinese silks and porcelains, but had little to
offer in exchange. European textiles and metalwork were inferior to Chinese products. The
Chinese therefore demanded payment in gold or silver. The Ming eventually allowed the
Portuguese a trading post at Macao near Canton, present-day Guangzhou (GWAHNG
joh). Later, they let Dutch, English, and other Europeans trade with Chinese merchants.
Foreigners could trade only at Canton under the supervision of imperial officials. When
each year's trading season ended, they had to sail away.
Vocabulary Builder
imperial—(im PIHR ee ul) adj. relating to an emperor or empire
Seeking Converts Portuguese missionaries arrived in China along with the traders. In later
years the Jesuits—from Spain, Italy, and Portugal—arrived. Most Jesuits had a broad
knowledge of many subjects, and the Chinese welcomed the chance to learn about
Renaissance Europe from these scholars. The brilliant Jesuit priest Matteo Ricci (mah
TAY oh REE thee) made a particularly strong impression on the Chinese. Still, Ricci and
other priests had little success spreading their religious beliefs in China. They did,
however, become important sources of information for Europeans who knew little about
Checkpoint Why did Ming China demand that Europeans pay for goods with gold or silver?
The Manchu Conquest
By the early 1600s, the aging Ming dynasty was decaying. Revolts erupted, and Manchu
invaders from the north pushed through the Great Wall. The Manchus ruled a region in the
northeast, Manchuria, that had long been influenced by Chinese civilization. In 1644,
victorious Manchu armies seized Beijing and made it their capital.
Merchants and traders followed on the heels of the European explorers, establishing trading
posts and ports throughout the Eastern Hemisphere. Within a few years, European ships
carrying valuable goods were crisscrossing the waters of Europe, Africa, and Asia.
Divers in the 1990s exploring a European shipwreck off the southwestern coast of England
found these African objects. Dating from the 1600s, the objects point to a thriving trade
relationship between 4frica and Europe at the time.
The Chinese prized silk, using it to make elaborate clothes like the imperial robe below.
Europeans eagerly became involved in the silk trade in the 1600s.
Indians turned cotton into clothes, wall hangings (left), and household goods. Though cotton
had been grown in India, Egypt, and China since ancient times, it was not known to most
Europeans until the 1 600s.
The Spice Islands
Cloves and other spices originated in the Moluccas, later called the Spice Islands. Asians used
such spices for centuries before Europeans began to import them.
Japanese blue-and-white porcelain, like this dish made in the 1600s, was prized by Europeans.
Later Dutch pottery known as delftware was an imitation of this Japanese style.
Thinking Critically
1. Analyze Information Which European country most likely monopolized the Indian cotton
2. Make Predictions What impact would important goods like cotton have on European
struggles for power in the Americas?
Founding the Qing Dynasty The Manchus set up a new dynasty called the Qing (ching). The
Manchus won the support of Chinese scholar-officials because they adopted the Confucian
system of government. For each top government position, the Qing chose two people, one
Manchu and one Chinese. Local government remained in the hands of the Chinese, but
Manchu troops stationed across the empire ensured loyalty.
Two rulers oversaw the most brilliant age of the Qing. Kangxi (kahng shee), who ruled from
1661 to 1722, was an able administrator and military leader. He extended Chinese power
into Central Asia and promoted Chinese culture. Kangxi's grandson Qianlong (chyahn
lung) had an equally successful reign from 1736 to 1796. He expanded China's borders to
rule the largest area in the nation's history. Qianlong retired after 60 years because he did
not want to rule longer than his grandfather had.
Spreading Peace and Prosperity The Chinese economy expanded under both emperors. New
crops from the Americas, such as potatoes and corn, had been introduced into China. These
crops boosted farm output, which in turn contributed to a population boom. China's
population rose from 140 million in 1740 to over 300 million by 1800. The silk, cotton,
and porcelain industries expanded. Internal trade grew, as did the demand for Chinese
goods from all over the world.
Watch Manchu China and the Weston the Witness History Discovery School™ video
program to learn more about the interactions between two very different cultures.
History Interactive
For: Interactive trade route Web Code: nbp-1431
Emperor Qianlong wrote a letter to King George III denying Britain's request for more trading
rights and permanent ambassadors. How does Emperor Qianlong's language express his
view that China is superior to Britain?
Primary Source
"As to your entreaty to send one of your nationals ... to my Celestial Court, this request is
contrary to all usage of my dynasty and cannot possibly be entertained... I have but one aim
in view, namely, to maintain a perfect governance and to fulfill the duties of the State:
strange and costly objects do not interest me.... Our dynasty's majestic virtue has penetrated
unto every country under Heaven, and Kings of all nations have offered their costly tribute
by land and sea. As your Ambassador can see for himself, we possess all things. I set no
value on objects strange or ingenious, and have no use for your country's manufactures.”
Rejecting Contact With Europeans The Qing maintained the Ming policy of restricting
foreign traders. Still, Europeans kept pressing to expand trade to cities other than
Guangzhou. In 1793, Lord Macartney arrived in China at the head of a British diplomatic
mission. He brought samples of British-made goods to show the Chinese the advantages of
trade with Westerners. The Chinese, who looked on the goods as rather crude products,
thought they were gifts offered as tribute to the emperor.
Further misunderstandings followed. Macartney insisted on an audience with the emperor. The
Chinese told Macartney he would have to perform the traditional kowtow, touching his
head to the ground to show respect to the emperor. Macartney refused. He also offended
the Chinese by speaking of the natural superiority of the English. The negotiations faltered.
At the time, Qianlong's attitude seemed justified by China's successes. After all, he already
ruled the world's greatest empire. Why should he negotiate with a nation as distant as
Britain? In the long run, however, his policy proved disastrous. In the 1800s, China would
learn that its policy of ignoring Westerners and their technology would have undesired
Checkpoint How did the Qing respond to Britain's diplomatic mission?
Korea: The "Hermit Kingdom"
Before the 1500s, Korean traders had far-ranging contacts across East Asia. A Korean map
from the 1300s accurately outlines lands from Japan to the Mediterranean. Koreans
probably acquired this knowledge from Arab traders who had visited Korea. Like China,
however, Korea restricted contacts with the outside world in the 1500s and 1600s. The
Choson dynasty firmly embraced Confucian ideas. The low status of merchants in
Confucianism led Koreans to look down on foreign traders.
In the 1590s, a Japanese invasion devastated Korea. Then in 1636, the Manchus conquered
Korea. When the Manchus set up the Qing dynasty in China, Korea became a tributary
state, run by its own government but forced to acknowledge China's supremacy. The two
invasions left Korea feeling, according to a Korean proverb, like "a shrimp among whales."
In response, the Koreans chose isolation, excluding all foreigners except the Chinese and a few
Japanese. When European sailors were shipwrecked on Korean shores, they were
imprisoned or killed. As a result, Korea became known in the West as the "Hermit
Kingdom." Though Korea had few contacts with the world for about 250 years, this period
was a great age for Korean arts and literature.
Checkpoint Why did Korea become a "hermit kingdom"?
Foreign Traders in Japan
Unlike the Chinese or Koreans, the Japanese at first welcomed Westerners. In 1543, the
Portuguese reached Japan, followed by the Spanish, Dutch, and English. They arrived at a
turbulent time, when Japanese daimyo were struggling for power. The daimyo quickly
adopted Western firearms which may have helped the Tokugawa shoguns centralize power
and impose order.
Jesuits, such as the Spanish priest Francis Xavier, found the Japanese curious about
Christianity. A growing number of Japanese adopted the new faith. The Japanese also
welcomed the printing press the Jesuits brought. The Tokugawa shoguns, however, grew
increasingly hostile toward foreigners. After learning that Spain had seized the Philippines,
they may have seen the newcomers as threats. They also worried that Japanese
Christians—who may have numbered as many as 300,000—owed their allegiance to the
pope, rather than to Japanese leaders. In response, the Tokugawas expelled foreign
missionaries. They brutally persecuted Japanese Christians, killing many thousands of
By 1638, the Tokugawas had turned against European traders as well. Japan barred all
European merchants and forbade Japanese to travel abroad. To further their isolation, they
outlawed the building of large ships, thereby ending foreign trade. In order to keep
informed about world events, they permitted just one or two Dutch ships each year to trade
at a small island in Nagasaki harbor.
Japan remained isolated for more than 200 years. Art and literature flourished, and internal
trade boomed. Cities grew in size and importance, and some merchant families gained
wealth and status. By the early 1700s, Edo (present-day Tokyo) had a million inhabitants,
more than either London or Paris.
Checkpoint Why did the Tokugawas turn against Europeans?
Bringing Trade and Christianity
This 1600s decorative screen shows Japanese people meeting a Portuguese ship carrying
European goods and missionaries. Did the presence of missionaries help or hurt EuropeanJapanese trade relations?
Vocabulary Builder
allegiance—(uh LEE juns) n. loyalty or devotion to a cause or person
SECTION 4 Assessment
Progress Monitoring Online
For: Self-quiz with vocabulary practice Web Code: nba-1441
Terms, People, and Places
1. Place each of the key terms, people, or places listed at the beginning of the section into one
of the following categories: politics, culture, government, or geography. Write a sentence
for each term explaining your choice.
Note Taking
2. Reading Skill: Understand Effects Use your completed chart to answer the Focus
Question: How were European encounters in East Asia shaped by the worldviews of both
Europeans and Asians?
Comprehension and Critical Thinking
3. Analyze Credibility Reread the quotation from the Ming document on page 461. Do you
think its characterization of China is credible? Explain.
4. Draw Inferences What do Qing China's trade policies with Europeans in the 1700s tell you
about the state of the Qing economy?
5. Make Comparisons Why did both Japan and Korea respond to increased European contact
by going into isolation?
6. Synthesize Information Why did Japan allow limited contact with the Dutch, but not with
the Spanish or Portuguese?
Writing About History
Quick Write: Write a Conclusion Write a sentence to conclude a biographical essay about
Matteo Ricci. Read the information about Ricci in this section. Then construct a broad
summary sentence that covers the main point you want to make about his life. For
example, if your thesis is that Ricci believed Chinese culture to be superior to European
culture, you would include that point in your summary sentence.
Quick Study Guide
Progress Monitoring Online
For: Self-test with vocabulary practice Web Code: nba-1451
Causes of European Exploration
- Desire for Asian
- Motivation
luxury goods such as spices, gold, and silks
to spread Christianity
- Strategic
need to gain more direct access to trade
- Desire to
gain glory for country
- Renaissance curiosity to
- Competition
explore new lands
with other European countries
Important European Explorers
Explorer / Accomplishment
Vasco da Gama (Portugal) / Sailed around Cape of Good Hope; established ports on Indian
Christopher Columbus (Spain) / Sailed west across Atlantic Ocean to Caribbean
Vasco Nunez de Balboa (Spain) / Crossed Panama, reaching Pacific Ocean
Ferdinand Magellan (Spain) / Circumnavigated the globe
European Footholds in the Eastern Hemisphere
Country / Date / Foothold / Reason for Interest
Portugal / 1502 / Calicut, India / Spices
Portugal / 1510 / Goa, India / Military and commercial base
Portugal / 1511 / Malacca, Southeast Asia / Center of sea trade
Spain / 1521 / The Philippines / Center of sea trade
Portugal / 1589 / Mombasa, East Africa / Hub of international trade
Netherlands / 1652 / Cape Town, southern Africa / Strategic port for repairing and resupplying
Great Britain / 1757 / Northeastern India / Spices, trade goods
Major Asian Dynasties and Empires
Ruler / Location / Description / European Contact
Mughal empire / India / Major trading empire / After two centuries of peace and prosperity,
civil war between Muslim and Hindu princes weakened empire; European powers took
control in 1700s
Ming dynasty / China / Prosperous dynasty that had sponsored overseas exploration / Allowed
some trade with Europeans and sought out European learning; revolts in the 1600s led to
overthrow by the Manchus
Qing dynasty / China / Powerful dynasty that expanded China's borders and promoted Chinese
culture / Increasingly restricted European trading rights
Choson dynasty / Korea / Chinese-influenced Confucian state / Dominated by China and Japan;
responded by becoming a "hermit kingdom”
Tokugawa shogunate / Japan / Powerful warrior kingdom / Welcomed Europeans at first but
then expelled missionaries and most traders
1453 The Ottoman Turks take Constantinople, ending the Byzantine empire.
1492 Christopher Columbus reaches the Caribbean.
1498 Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama rounds Africa and reaches India.
1500 The kingdom of Kongo thrives in Africa.
1522 Magellan's expedition circumnavigates the globe.
1556 Akbar begins the Mughal reign in India.
1602 The Dutch establish the Dutch East India Company.
1603 The Tokugawas come to power in Japan.
1641 The Dutch take Malacca from the Portuguese.
1642 The English Civil War begins.
1736 China's emperor Qianlong begins his reign.
1756 The Seven Years' War breaks out between Britain and France.
Concept Connector
Cumulative Review
Record the answers to the questions below on your Concept Connector worksheets. In
addition, record information from this chapter about the following concepts:
- Technology:
the compass
- Trade:
Dutch trading empire; Indian trade in Southeast Asia - Cultural Diffusion: Indian
influence on Southeast Asia
1. Empire With the founding of the Qing empire, the Manchus established one of China's most
successful dynasties. One reason for the Manchus' success was their adoption of Chinese
customs and inclusion of Chinese in their government structure. The Yuan dynasty,
established by the Mongols, was another foreign-ruled Chinese dynasty. Compare the Qing
and the Yuan dynasties. Consider the following:
- culture
and language
- approaches
to trade
- involvement
of Chinese in the government
2. Conflict As the French and British began to establish global empires in the 1600s and 1
700s, they frequently came into conflict. This was not the first time that these two nations
had opposed each other. List other examples of French-British conflict from European
history. Consider the factors that seem to have made them historic enemies.
3. Trade In the 1500s and 1600s, Europeans took different approaches to establishing trade in
the Eastern Hemisphere. In some regions, Europeans established posts and took over cities
without regard to the people who lived there. In other regions, Europeans worked hard to
establish legitimate trade relations. Compare these two approaches, using specific
examples from the text. Think about the following:
- the
region's geography and European knowledge of it
- the
government of the people in the region
- European
- the
perceptions of the people and their religion
technological achievements of the people
Connections to Today
1. Trade: The Dutch Trading Empire In the 1500s, the Dutch began establishing an overseas
trade empire in Southeast Asia, using the tools of sea power and monopolistic trade
policies. Today, the Dutch are not known for their sea power or overseas domination, yet
the strong economy of the Netherlands still depends heavily on trade. Research Dutch
trade, including its global rank in exports, the number and types of companies owned by
the Dutch in the United States, and the role of multinational companies in the economy of
the Netherlands. Write two paragraphs summarizing the importance of trade to the
Netherlands today.
2. Technology: The Compass European exploration would not have been possible without the
compass. The compass allowed navigators to find direction accurately, rather than relying
on the sun, stars, and moon. Consider the events and discoveries that the compass made
possible. Then think of recent technological inventions that have had profound impacts on
the world today. Which technology do you consider to be equivalent in its impact to the
compass? Why?
History Interactive
For: Interactive timeline Web Code: nbp-1451
Chapter Assessment
Terms, People, and Places
1. Define cartographer. How did Prince Henry encourage the work of cartographers?
2. Write a sentence or two that shows why scurvy was a problem for sailors who
circumnavigated the globe.
3. What was the role of European plantations in the growth of slavery?
4. Define outpost. Why were European outposts important in the development of overseas
5. Why did European trading companies organize armies of sepoys in India?
6. How did the Asante kingdom use monopolies to keep its power?
Main Ideas
Section 1 (pp. 84-89)
7. How did the European interest in the spice trade lead to the discovery of new routes and
Section 2 (pp. 90-93)
8. How did new sea routes lead to an expanded European presence in Africa?
9. What impact did Portuguese exploration have on the people of Africa?
Section 3 (pp. 95-98)
10. How did Portugal gain dominance of the spice trade?
11. How did the Dutch use their foothold in Cape Town to develop an overseas trade empire?
12. What effect did European trade have on the Mughal empire?
Section 4 (pp. 99-103)
13. Summarize European attempts to establish trade and missions in East Asia.
14. Why were the Dutch able to maintain a presence in Japan even when other Europeans were
kicked out?
Chapter Focus Question
15. How did European voyages of exploration lead to European empires in the Eastern
Critical Thinking
16. Predict Consequences What might have happened if Asian explorers, rather than
Europeans, had first reached the Americas?
17. Geography and History How did Japan's geography allow the Tokugawas to maintain a
long period of isolation?
18. Draw Conclusions Did missionaries hurt or help European attempts to establish trade in
Asia? Explain your answer.
19. Analyze Visuals The woodcut below was made in 1555 by a Swedish geographer. What
does it tell you about European knowledge of the world before the age of exploration?
20. Recognize Cause and Effect How did competition among European countries affect
overseas exploration and conquest?
Writing About History
Writing a Biographical Essay Many great Europeans, Africans, and Asians shaped the history
of our global age. Write about one of the following important people in a biographical
essay: Ferdinand Magellan, Affonso I, Afonso de Albuquerque, Emperor Qianlong, or
Matteo Ricci. Consult page SH18 of the Writing Handbook for additional help.
- Choose the
person who interests you the most. Take notes about this person and his role in
shaping the age of global exploration.
- Draw
conclusions about the person you have chosen. Think about how you can turn these
conclusions into main points for your essay.
- Write an
introduction and a thesis statement. Your thesis statement should summarize the
main point you want to make about the person you chose.
- Write the
body text, introducing details and evidence that support your thesis statement. Then
write a conclusion.
- Use the
guidelines for revising your essay on page SH19 of the Writing Handbook.
Document-Based Assessment
Why Did Europeans Explore the Seas?
In the 1400s, Europeans began to embark on long and dangerous voyages to unknown
destinations. Why did this age of exploration begin? In Documents A and B, a
contemporary observer and a modern-day historian describe the impetus behind these early
Document A
"The discovery of the new Western World followed, as an incidental consequence, from the
long struggle of the nations of Europe for commercial supremacy and control of the traffic
with the East. In all these dreams of the politicians and merchants, sailors and geographers,
who pushed back the limits of the unknown world, there is the same glitter of gold and
precious stones, the same odour of far-fetched spices."
Walter Raleigh, 1509
Document B
"The starting point for the European expansion out of the Mediterranean and the Atlantic
continental shelf had nothing to do with, say, religion or the rise of capitalism—but it had a
great deal to do with pepper [Pepper] comprised more than half of all the spice imports into
Italy over a period of more than a century. No other single spice came within one-tenth of
the value of pepper.... However, since about 1470 the Turks had been impeding the
overland trade routes east from the Mediterranean. As a result the great Portuguese, Italian,
and Spanish explorers all sailed west or south in order to reach the Orient. The Americas
were discovered as a by-product in the search for pepper."
Seeds of Change by Henry Hobhouse
Document C
This fifteenth-century painting depicts Henry the Navigator, standing at right in round black
hat. A Portuguese prince, Henry did much to advance maritime exploration and the fields
of navigation and cartography.
Document D
This page from a sixteenth-century book about navigation depicts England's Queen Elizabeth in
the ship at the right.
Analyzing Documents
Use your knowledge of European exploration and Documents A, B, C, and D to answer
questions 1-4.
1. Documents A and B both make the point that the discovery of new lands Wd5 motivated by
A religious fanaticism.
B adventurous dreams.
C wanting to make money.
D Renaissance ideals.
2. What motivation for exploration is implied in Document C?
A the search for spices
B the desire to please king or country
C the desire to spread Christianity
D both B and C
3. What does Document D suggest about how European monarchs viewed exploration?
A They saw it as vitally important to their nations.
B They viewed exploration as interesting but unnecessary.
C They saw it as important but not worth spending money on.
D They had no opinion about exploration.
4. Writing Task Using information from the chapter, assess the various motivations for
exploration. Are there any that are not shown in these documents? Choose the motivation
you think was the most compelling for Europeans. Use specific evidence from the chapter
and documents to support your argument.