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World History
Chapter 3
The First Global
Age: Europe, the
Americas, and
Africa (1492-1750)
During the age of exploration, European powers built colonial empires
in the Americas. New patterns of conquest and global exchange had an
enormous impact on the civilization of Africa as well.
Spanish conquistadors vanquished the Aztec and Incan
civilizations and set up a vast empire in the Americas.
By the 1600s, Spain, France, England, and the Netherlands
were competing for trade and colonies.
The arrival of European settlers in the Americas brought
disaster to Native Americans.
Beginning in the 1400s, Europeans began establishing trading
outposts in Africa.
Millions of slaves were imported from Africa to meet labor needs
in American colonies. The slave trade let to the fall of some
African states and the rise of others.
The Columbian Exchange was a vast global interchange of
people, animals, culture, ideas, and technology.
Beginning in the 1500s, Europe experienced a commercial
revolution that brought about dramatic economic changes,
including the rise of capitalism.