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Explorers: The quick facts Adapted from: www.kidskonnect.com/history/explorers The Golden Age of Exploration ➔ From 1400 AD until 1700 AD, there was a period of time called "The Golden Age of Exploration". ➔ Many European explorers traveled to the New World on their voyages of discovery. What countries did the explorers come from? Many countries were seeking trade routes to the New World: ● ● ● ● ● England France Spain Holland Portugal ● Italy The early explorers were also going to claım lands for these countrıes and conquer or convert any people living on these lands. But wait!! Do not forget Leif Ericson (He was a Viking) ➔ Vikings were fierce travelers who: ◆ Build amazing boats ◆ Navigated 400 years before the Golden Age of Exploration! ◆ Braved the freezing waters of the North Atlantic Ocean ◆ Created beautiful art ◆ Used metal for weapons, armor, jewelry, and in their boats Leif Ericson died 1020 ➔ The first explorer to reach North American was Leif Ericson. ◆ He was a Norseman and sailed around 1,000 A.D. The Norsemen were people who inhabited Scandinavia ➔ ➔ ➔ Vikings were fierce and brave They traveled from: ◆ Norway, Sweden and Denmark They traveled to Greenland, Iceland, and parts of North America (Newfoundland) Marco Polo (1254-1324) You should know this!! ➔ Marco Polo was an Italian explorer who traveled with his father and his uncle to the Far East. ➔ They went to what is now China. ◆ A book called, The Travels of Marco Polo, was written while he was in prison by Rustichello da Pisa. ◆ His explorations took place between 1271-1295. Christopher Columbus (1451-1506) ➔ Probably the best known explorer in the United States is Christopher Columbus. ➔ In 1492, Columbus set sail across the Atlantic Ocean in search of India. ➔ He didn’t find India, but is credited with finding the New World (West Indies). ➔ Columbus sailed for Spain. Amerigo Vespucci (1454-1512) ➔ Amerigo Vespucci is important because: ◆ he was one of the early explorers of the New World ◆ the continents of North and South America were named in his honor ◆ he was the first person to state that North and South America were NOT part of Asia ◆ ➔ he estimated the circumference of the world within 50 miles!! Vespucci knew Columbus and helped him get his ships ready Columbus’s second and third voyages. If you want to know more... Vespucci believed Columbus was wrong in thinking that the world was a smaller size. He was one of the first explorers to come up with the idea that these places he had visited were not part of Asia, as Columbus had thought, but rather were part of a “New World.” He went on at least two, and possibly four, voyages to Central and South America between 1497 and 1504. He sailed for Spain and Portugal. Martin Waldseemüller's 1507 map was the first to use the word "America." Waldseemüller had proposed naming the newly discovered continents after the Italian explorer. This map shows South America Credit: Library of Congress Sir Francis Drake The most famous English explorer is probably Sir Francis Drake. Between 1577 and 1580, he made his voyage around the world, defeated the Spanish Armada, and claimed what is now the state of California for England. Vasco de Balboa (1475-1519) ➔ ➔ Vasco de Balboa from Spain led an expedition across Panama and found the Pacific Ocean. Sailed in 1513 Juan Ponce de Leon (1474-1521) Height: 4’11” ➔ Juan Ponce de Leon sailed for Spain ➔ Juan Ponce de Leon explored what is now the state of Florida and named it after the Pascua Florıda (Festival of Flowers) ◆ ➔ He searched for the “Fountain of Youth” Became the first governor of Puerto Rico ◆ appointed by Spain in 1509 Ferdinand Magellan ➔ ➔ In 1520-1521, Magellan proved through his explorations that the Earth is round. He established the first route to the East that involved sailing to the west. ◆ This passage went around the tip of South America. ◆ Magellan sailed for the Spanish king Charles I Four more to check out... ➔ Four Spanish explorers also made history when they traveled to the Americas. Between 1519 and 1521, Hernando Cortez conquered the Aztecs in Mexico. Between 1523 and 1535, Francisco Pizarro conquered Peru in South America. Between 1539 and 1541, Hernando De Soto explored what is today the southwest United States and discovered the Mississippi River. ➔ Between 1540 and 1542, Francisco Vazquez de Coronado (1510-1554) also spent time exploring the American southwest.