an age of exploration and isolation 1400-1800

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  • An Age of Exploration and Isolation1400-1800By the early 1400s, Europeans were ready to venture beyond their borders. The Renaissance encouraged, among other things, a new spirit of adventure and curiosity. This unit describes how European exploration began a long process that would bring together the peoples of many different lands and permanently change the world.

  • An Age of Exploration and IsolationI. Motivation for ExplorationII. Portugal Leads the WayIII. Trading Empires in the Indian OceanIV. China Rejects European OutreachV. Japan Limits Western Contacts

  • An Age of Exploration and IsolationEuropeans had not been completely isolated from the rest of the world before the 1400s.Beginning around 1100, European crusaders battled Muslims for control of the Holy Lands in the Middle East.In 1275, the Italian trader Marco Polo reached the court of Kublai Khan in China.

  • An Age of Exploration and IsolationFor the most part, however, Europeans had neither the interest nor the ability to explore foreign lands.That changed by the 1400s.The desire to grow rich and to spread Christianity, coupled with advances in sailing technology, spurred an age of European exploration.

  • I. Motivation for Exploration

  • I. Motivation for Exploration1. The desire to get rich was the main reason for European exploration.The trade for spices and other luxury goods from Asia, introduced during the Crusades, had become a profitable business.

  • I. Motivation for ExplorationThe Muslims and the Italians controlled the trade of goods from East to West.Muslims sold Asian goods to Italian merchants, who controlled trade across land routes of Europe.The Italian merchants resold the items at increased prices to merchants throughout Europe.By the 1400s, European merchants, as well as the monarchs of England, Spain, Portugal, and France, sought to bypass the Italian merchants who cut into their profits.

  • I. Motivation for Exploration2. The desire to spread Christianity also fueled European exploration.The crusades left feelings of hostility between Christians and Muslims.European nations believed they had a sacred duty not only to continue fighting Muslims, but to convert non-Christians throughout the world.

  • I. Motivation for Exploration3. Advances in technology made the voyages of discovery possible.In the 1400s shipbuilders designed a new vessel, the caravel. The ship was sturdier and included large triangular sails.

  • I. Motivation for ExplorationThe astrolabe, which Muslims had perfected, helped captains sight stars and tell how far north or south of the equator he was.The magnetic compass, invented by the Chinese, also helped.

  • II. Portugal Leads the Way

  • II. Portugal Leads the WayThe European leader in developing and applying these sailing innovations was Portugal.Led by Prince Henry the Navigator, Portugal conquered the Muslim city of Cueta in North Africa in 1415.There, he saw the dazzling wealth that lay beyond Europe.The Portuguese invaders found spices, gold, silver, and jewels.

  • II. Portugal Leads the WayIn 1419, Henry founded a navigation school in Portugal.Map makers, instrument makers, shipbuilders, scientists, and sea captains gathered there to perfect their trade.By the time Henry died in 1460, the Portuguese had established a series of trading posts along the western coast of Africa.There, they traded for gold, ivory, and eventually slaves.

  • II. Portugal Leads the WayThe Portuguese believed that to reach Asia by sea, they would have to sail around the southern tip of Africa.In 1487, Bartolomeu Diaz reached the southern tip of Africa.As he arrived, a huge storm rose and battered his fleet for days.When the storm ended, Diaz realized his ships had been blown around the tip.Exhausted and low on supplies, he returned home.

  • II. Portugal Leads the WayIn 1498, the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama reached the port of Calicut, India.Da Gama filled the ships with spices and returned to Portugal to a heros welcome.

  • III. Trading Empires in the Indian Ocean

  • III. Trading Empires in the Indian OceanWith da Gamas voyage, Europeans finally opened direct sea trade with Asia.They also opened an era of violent conflict in the East.European nations scrambled to establish profitable trading outposts along the shores of South and Southeast Asia.And all the while they battled the regions inhabitants and each other.

  • III. Trading Empires in the Indian OceanPortugal built a bustling trading empire throughout the Indian Ocean, taking control of the spice trade from Muslim merchants.

  • III. Trading Empires in the Indian OceanPortuguese merchants brought back goods from Asia at about a fifth of what they cost when purchased through the Arabs and Italians.Portugals success attracted the attention of other European nations.Beginning around 1600, the English and the Dutch broke Portuguese control of the Asian region.

  • III. Trading Empires in the Indian OceanThe Dutch Republic is also known as the Netherlands, or Holland.Both the English and Dutch formed an East India Company to establish and direct trade throughout Asia.These companies had the power to mint money, make treaties, and even raise their own armies.The Dutch East India Company was richer and more powerful and eventually drove out the English.

  • III. Trading Empires in the Indian OceanEuropean traders did gain control of numerous port cities throughout the region.However, their influence rarely spread beyond the ports into the countrys interiorEuropean traders who sailed farther east to seek riches in China and Japan had even less success in spreading Western culture.

  • IV. China Rejects European OutreachEuropeans made healthy profits in the Indian Ocean trade. Looking for additional sources of wealth, they sought a trading relationship with China. By the time westerners arrived in the 1500s, China had driven out its Mongol rulers and had united under the Ming Dynasty.

  • IV. China Rejects European OutreachChina had become the dominant power in the region under the rule of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).In recognition of Chinas power, vassal nations from Korea to Southeast Asia paid their Ming overlords regular tribute.The Ming rulers would not let outsiders threaten the peace and prosperity they had brought to China.

  • IV. China Rejects European OutreachIn 1405, before Europeans began to sail beyond their borders, China launched the first of seven voyages of exploration, led by Muslim admiral named Zheng He.Everything about the expeditions was large distances traveled, size of the fleet, and measurements of the ships themselves.

  • IV. China Rejects European OutreachThe voyages roamed from Southeast Asia and India to Arabia and East Africa.China wanted to impress the world with its power and hoped to expand its tribute system.Each expedition included: 40 to 300 ships, fighting vessels, storage ships up to 440 feet long, and up to 27,000 crewmen, including sailors, soldiers, carpenters, interpreters, accountants, doctors, and religious leaders.

  • IV. China Rejects European OutreachEverywhere Zheng He went, he distributed gifts, such as gold, silver, silk, and scented oils, to show Chinese superiority.Many Chinese scholars felt these voyages wasted valuable resources.After the seventh voyage ended in 1433, there were no more.China withdrew into a self-sufficient isolation.

  • IV. China Rejects European OutreachChinas official trade policies in the 1500s reflected its isolation.Only the government was to conduct foreign trade through three coastal ports.Merchants turned to smuggling to meet the demands for Chinese goods.Industries such as silk making and ceramics grew rapidly.However, China did not industrialize because commerce offended Chinas Confucian beliefs and taxes on manufacturing and trade skyrocketed.

  • IV. China Rejects European OutreachIn 1644, the Manchus invaded China and the Ming Dynasty collapsed after ruling for over 200 years.Calling themselves the Qing Dynasty, the Manchus would rule for more than 260 years.Many Chinese resisted rule by the non-Chinese Manchus, however, they slowly earned the peoples respect.They upheld Chinas traditional Confusian beliefs, made the countrys frontiers safe, and restored Chinas prosperity.

  • IV. China Rejects European OutreachManchus Continue a Policy of Isolation:To the Chinese, their country had been the cultural center of the universe for two thousand years.If foreign states wished to trade with China, they had to follow Chinese rules.Foreign diplomats paid tribute to Chinas emperor through gifts and by performing the required kowtow ritual.This ritual involved their kneeling in front of the emperor and touching their heads to the ground nine times.

  • IV. China Rejects European OutreachThe Dutch accepted these restrictions and the Chinese accepted them as a trading partner.The Dutch returned home with porcelains, silk, and tea.By 1800, tea would make up 80 percent of shipments to Europe.

  • V. Japan Limits Western ContactsThe Tokugawa regime unifies Japan and begins a 200-year period of isolation, autocracy, and economic growth.

  • V. Japan Limits Western ContactJapan had long been ruled by a series of shoguns, or supreme military dictators.In 1467, civil war shattered Japans feudal system.The county collapsed into chaos.Power drained away from the shogun to territorial lords in hundreds of separate domains.

  • V. Japan Limits Western ContactThis violent era of disorder which lasted from 1467 to 1568 is known as the Sengoku, or Warring States period.Powerful samurai seized control and offered peasants and


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