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Scientific Revolution,
and Enlightenment
• Capitalism – An economic system in which
individuals and private businesses run most
• Circumnavigate – To go all the way around.
• Columbian Exchange – An exchange of plants,
animals, and ideas between the New World
(Americas) and the Old World (Europe).
• Enlightenment – A period during the 1600’s and
1700’s when reason was used to guide people’s
thoughts about society, politics, and philosophy.
• Market Economy – An economic system in which
individuals decide what goods and services they
will buy.
• Mercantilism – A system in which a government
controls all economic activity in a country and its
colonies to make the government stronger and
• Scientific Method – A step-by-step method for
performing experiments and other scientific
• Scientific Revolution – A series of events that
led to the birth of modern science; it lasted
from about 1540 to 1700.
Why did people want
to explore the world?
1. Asian Spices
• Italy and Egypt controlled trade with Asia.
• Direct routes would cut out the middle men.
2. Religion
• Christians wanted to counter the spread of
Islam in Europe, Asia, and Africa.
3. Technology Advancements
• Astrolabe
• Compass
• More accurate maps
– These advancements allow sailors to move farther
away from the coast. They also allow them to go
farther and be more accurate in their navigations.
4. Shipbuilding Advancements
• Caravels- Ships that used
triangular sails which could sail
against the wind.
• Rudders- Replaced the oars and
improve the steering.
Portuguese inventions allow them
to get further ahead in
Portuguese in Exploration
• Henry the Navigator - Ruler of Portugal that built
an observatory and a navigation school.
• This educated more sailors and encouraged
• He sponsored several voyages but never sailed
Portuguese in Exploration
• Bartolomeu Dias - Sailor who sailed around
the Cape of Good Hope, the southern tip of
• He had to turn back because supplies were
low otherwise he would have made it to India.
Portuguese in Exploration
• Vasco de Gama – Explorer who sailed around
Africa and landed in India.
• He discovered a sea route to Asia!
• This made Portugal an important naval power
in the Indian Ocean.
Spanish in Exploration
• Christopher Columbus – Italian Sailor who sailed
out looking for a shorter route to Asia.
• Spanish Monarch supported his journey for the
following reasons:
– Riches
– New Territory
– Catholic Converts
• Columbus landed on an island in Bahamas. He
thought he had reached Asia when in reality he
found the Americas!
Spanish in Exploration
• Ferdinand Magellan - Sailed around the Southern
tip of South America.
• Magellan died while trying to show force against
a tribal group. Through a number of
misjudgments Magellan’s attack didn’t work. As
his men retreated Magellan was hit by a native’s
spear and died.
• His crew continued the journey. They were able
to circumnavigate the world!
Spanish in Exploration
• The Spanish hope to find gold and silver as a
result of their exploration.
• They also want to convert the natives to
Spanish in Exploration
• At this time in America, also known as the
New World, the Aztec and Inca Empires are at
their height.
• They are rich empires with a lot of gold and
Spanish in Exploration
• The Spanish attack these
empires. They have better guns
which allow them to conquer the
Aztecs and Incas.
• Also, they bring with them
diseases that the natives had
never been exposed to.
• The new diseases wipe out ¾ of
the native population.
• Spain ruled much of the
English in Exploration
• England and France look for routes through
North America since Spain and Portugal
control the Southern routes.
• England was also looking for riches in addition
to a route to Asia.
English in Exploration
• Spain was controlling all of the gold and silver
that once belonged to Aztecs and Incas.
• English explorer Sir Frances Drake stole from
Spanish transport ships.
• This upset Spain!
in Exploration
• Spain sends 130 ships to attack England. The fleet was
called the Spanish Armada.
• These ships were large and heavily adorned with
• The English had faster ships and better guns.
• The Armada was defeated!
• This means that Spain did not invade England and they
now had an opponent for the best fleet on the sea!
• Another important explorer for the English was
James Cook.
• Cook and his crew were searching for a Northern
Passage through North America that would connect
the Pacific Ocean and the Atlantic Ocean.
• They could not find a passage so they sailed south.
• They discovered what we today know as the
Hawaiian Islands. Cook called them the Sandwich
Islands though. He named them after his friend the
Earl of Sandwich.
French in Exploration
• Jacques Cartier was a French explorer. His
journeys led to Canada being claimed by the
Colonization Following Exploration
• Portugal – Brazil. They only set up this
colony when their power in the region
was being threatened by other
• Spain – Mexico, Latin America,
Caribbean, and Southern North
America. Took over the Aztec and Inca
empires and controlled large amounts
of gold and silver. Set up colonies in
these areas. Put encomienda in place.
This is a system where the Spanish
government allowed citizens to
demand work from the natives.
Colonization Following Exploration
• England – Eastern Coast of North
America, Parts of Canada, Australia.
Came to the New World looking for
riches and religious freedom. Australia
was set up by English convicts. This
happened because English prisons
were overcrowded.
• France – Parts of Canada, Southern tip
of South America. Disappointed that
gold and silver was not plentiful like in
the region the Spanish settled. French
soon found out that furs were a
valuable resource of their region.
Results of Exploration
• New Knowledge of the World
• Proved Old Beliefs Wrong
• Discovered that the Americas were separate
from Asia
• Geographers Made Better Maps
• New Lands were Claimed and Settled
• New Trade Routes were Discovered
Results of Exploration
• The discovery of new trade routes led to an
increase in trade and an increase in the variety
of trade goods.
• This resulted in two new forms of trade:
– Columbian Trade
– Triangular Trade
Columbian Trade
Columbian Trade
• Results of the Exchange:
• Eating habits change.
• Culture of Europe was introduced around the
• Many new converts to Christianity.
• New technology was spread to other parts of the
world that weren’t as developed as Europe.
• New textiles were made from sheep’s wool.
• Plantations were created in the Americas.
Triangular Trade
• The development of plantations
would lead to triangular trade.
• Under triangular trade slaves were
taken to the West Indies where they
were traded for sugar cane. The
sugar cane was taken to New
England where it was made into
rum and other products. It then was
shipped out and sold within the
Triangular Trade
Triangular Trade
• The worst part of Triangular Trade was the
Middle Passage.
• This was the part of the trip from Africa to the
West Indies, as they crossed the Atlantic Ocean.
• Many slaves would be packed onto ships
without enough food and water. They would be
chained together in cramped conditions. Many
would die on the journey. Europeans did not care
though because they only viewed slaves as
Triangular Trade
Trade and
Economic Power
• European countries saw colonies as a way to make money.
• This caused mercantilism to develop. This means that the
government controls all economic activity in the country and
colonies. Their goal is to make the country stronger and
• Countries used mercantilism to keep trade balanced, meaning
they imported and exported an equal amount. Also they used
it to find more gold and silver. These valuables were
considered a measure of how great a country was.
Trade and Economic Power
• Netherlands becomes a trading power
because of their business skills and
shipbuilding skills. They set up trading posts in
India, Japan, and Southern Africa.
• England also increased trade by setting up
trading posts in Asia and resources and trade
with their North American colonies.
Trade and Economic Power
• Dutch and English set up banks to deal with all
the money that they gained from trade.
• Banks would exchange the money for merchants
who because of trade where stuck dealing with
money from around the world.
• Banks would also loan money for others to start
new businesses.
• Banking, new trade routes, and manufacturing
caused power to shift from countries like Portugal
and Spain to now England and the Netherlands.
Trade and Economic Power
• Economic growth and wealth changed
business in Europe.
• Manufactured goods were in higher demand.
Here are several reasons why:
– Europe’s population was growing
– Farmers could grow food at lower cost. Since
people weren’t spending money on food they
could spend it on other things.
– Colonies had to get their goods from Europe.
Trade and Economic Power
• Capitalism, an economic system in which
individuals and private businesses run
industries, began during this time
• Market Economies, where individuals
decide what goods and services they will
buy and sell, along with capitalism
became the basis for economies of
Europe and the Americas.
Trade and Economic Power
• Supply and Demand are apart of those
economic systems.
Scientific Revolution
• Around the time
Magellan was attempting
to circumnavigate the
world, great discoveries
were being made in the
scientific world .
• This would be the
beginning of the
Scientific Revolution.
Scientific Revolution
• Before the Scientific Revolution people just
took the word of authorities or the Catholic
• After the Scientific Revolution people felt freer
to question old beliefs, study the world
around them, and use logic to explain what
they saw.
Scientific Revolution
• Science is a Latin word that means “Knowledge”
or “Understanding”.
• Scientist follow certain steps.
• Prior to the Scientific Revolution discovering
knowledge in this way was uncommon.
Scientific Revolution
• Ancient Greek and Roman thinkers were
rationalist. This means that they looked at the
world in a rational, logical way.
• Muslims translated the Greek and Romans
ideas to Arabic and added some of their own
ideas. Later it was translated back to Latin and
Europeans started to study it and become
more rational.
Scientific Revolution
• Humanist ideas that focused on nature and
alchemy (experiments that aimed to turn
common metals into gold) also contributed to
the Scientific Revolution.
• Something then happened that made
everyone doubt the ancient ideas….
• Columbus’ findings caused everyone to doubt
the ancient ideas. He used a map created by a
great ancient thinker. No where on that map
did it show a separate landmass, North
• People were very surprised that real world
experience would disprove ancient ideas.
Scientific Revolution
• The Scientific
Revolution is thought to
have started with the
publishing of a book
that contradicted
ancient beliefs about
• The book was called On
the Revolution of the
Celestial Spheres and it
was written by Nicolas
Men and Ideas of the
Scientific Revolution
• Nicolas Copernicus – Wrote On the Revolution of
the Celestial Spheres. In this book he explained
his idea that the planets orbited around the sun.
This contradicted ancient thinker, Ptolemy, idea
that the Earth was the center of the universe and
everything orbited around it.
• Copernicus was never able to prove his idea but
he did inspire new thinking.
Men and Ideas of the
Scientific Revolution
• Tycho Brache – He plotted
the positions of more than
750 stars.
• He was able to do this
through careful observation
and record keeping.
• He set an example that other
scientist would begin to
Men and Ideas of the
Scientific Revolution
• Johannes Kepler – Assistant to Tycho Brache.
Later he tried to map the orbit of the planets
but he figured out that the orbits were not
circular but elliptical.
• Kepler’s basic ideas about orbits are still
believed and accepted today.
Men and Ideas of the
Scientific Revolution
• Galileo Galilee – First person to study
• the sky with a telescope.
• He saw craters on the moon and discovered
that moons orbit Jupiter.
• Galileo was also concerned with mechanics
or the study of objects in motion. Rather
than just studying them in nature, Galileo
set up experiments. He was the first
scientist to routinely use experiments.
Men and Ideas of the
Scientific Revolution
• Galileo thought that scientific study would
change how people understood the world. In turn
he thought that would improve their standard of
living and then break down barriers between
• He was not able to write about his ideas because
of the great pressure he felt from the church.
Since his ideas opposed the church’s ideas that
church leaders kept him from writing.
Men and Ideas of
the Scientific
• Sir Isaac Newton – Published Principa Mathmatica.
He also had theories about gravity and motion that
were proven so many times that they have now
been named laws.
• Also discovered that light was made up of many
colors. This helped him create the reflecting
telescope which is used in large observatories even
• His ideas became the basis of all scientific study until
the 1900’s.
Men and
Ideas of the
Scientific Revolution
• Inventions of the Scientific Revolution:
– Microscope – Used to observe plants and animals living in a
drop of pond water.
– Thermometer – Developed by Galileo and used to measure
– Telescope – Improved by Galileo and used to make many of
his discoveries.
– Barometer – Used to measure air pressure and helped in
predicting the weather.
*All of these inventions helped scientist learn about the world.
Scientific Revolutions Effects
• Science was pursued in a
systematic fashion. Francis
Bacon and Rene Descartes
encouraged the orderly
process of experimenting and
recording data. This led to the
Scientific Method which is
based on experiments and
observation. Those are the
main principles of science!
Scientific Revolution Effects
• Science affected other areas of life.
• People thought that logic could explain problems
such as poverty and war. They thought they could
use reason to improve life.
• Laws that governed nature and human behavior
were also discovered.
• People started to believe that if these laws
governed everyone then everyone must be equal.
• Science opposed the Church’s beliefs. This led to
conflict between the two.
The Age of Reason
• The discoveries made through exploration and the
Scientific Revolution began to question long held
beliefs about science, religion, and government.
• Scholars were relying on reason and logic.
• They felt that reason and logic could achieve three
great goals – knowledge, happiness, and freedom!
• Achieving those goals would then lead to an
improved society.
The Age of Reason
• The use of reason in guiding
people’s thoughts about
philosophy, society, and
politics was the
Enlightenment or the Age of
Roots of the Enlightenment
Greek and Roman
Logic could discover
new truths; natural law
governed how the
world operated.
Faith and
reason together
could explain
the world.
Human reason could be
used to achieve
knowledge, freedom and
happiness; achieving
these goals would
improve society.
Scientific Revolution
Scientific Laws, not
religion governed the
natural world.
Renaissance and
Humanist emphasized
human achievement
and said that people
could improve their
New Ideas of the
• Voltaire was a philosopher who mocked
government and religion in his writings. He
thought that humans could improve their own
existence and that they didn’t need to trust that
God would improve their happiness.
• He also spoke out against censorship since he had
been censored.
• “I (may) disapprove of what you say, but I will
defend to the death your right to say it”
• That saying emphasizes freedom of thought, a
main goal of the Enlightenment.
New Ideas of the Enlightenment
• Denis Diderot edited a book called the
Encyclopedia. This book included articles from
over 100 experts on science, history, and
• The pope and French King both banned the
New Ideas of the Enlightenment
• Even though there was censorship, the
Enlightenment ideas spread.
• Salons were gatherings were ideas could be
shared. These salons helped spread the ideas.
Salons could be hosted by women and in this
way they were able to influence the
New Ideas of the Enlightenment
• Mary Wollstonecraft
– Female British
writer that argued
that women should
have the same rights
as men.
New Ideas of the Enlightenment
• Three more extremely important men of the
Enlightenment were:
– John Locke
– Charles-Louis Montesquieu
– Jean-Jacques Rousseau
*These men had great influence
on governments around the world.
New Ideas of the Enlightenment
• John Locke – Wrote Two Treatises on Government.
He argued that government should be a contract
between ruler and his people. The ruler’s power
would be limited. He believed that government
existed only for the good of the people.
• Also, he believed that people had natural rights such
as life, liberty, and property.
New Ideas of the Enlightenment
• Charles-Louis Montesquieu – Wrote
the Spirit of Laws which built on
Locke’s ideas.
• He believed the powers of the
government should be separated into
different branches.
• The branches could limit each other
and keep the others in check.
New Ideas of the
• Jean-Jacques Rousseau – Wrote the Social Contract.
Did not believe in divine right but instead in popular
sovereignty. This is the idea that governments
should express the will of the people.
• “Man is born free but is everywhere else in chains.”
• People enter into a Social Contract where they give
their government the right to create and enforce
New Ideas of the Enlightenment
• The ideas of the Enlightenment would lead to
another period of change in the world.
• As the ideas of the Enlightenment spread changes
began to occur in the governments around the