2. Travels is a book that was written in 1271 by Marco Polo. It is an account of his travels throughout Asia. Polo’s book was the most informative of the descriptions of Asia by any other traveler of his time. He was also an ambassador to Khubilai Khan and the Mongols.
3. Vasco da Gama was sponsored by the Portuguese crown. The objective of his mission was to destroy the Muslim monopoly over the spice trade. He returned to Europe with his remaining ships’ cargo filled with cinnamon and ginger.
4. John Cabot was a seafarer from Venice. He explored the coastline of New England under a license from King Henry VII of England. He is thought to be the first European to be on the mainland of North America since the Vikings.
5. Bartolome de las Casas was a Dominican monk. He participated in the conquest in Cuba and was rewarded with land and Indians. In 1514, he went through a transformation. He now believed that the Indians were being mistreated. He spent the rest of his life trying to get better treatment for the Indians. He wrote many accounts on how he had seen the Indians being treated. Due to his accounts, in 1542 the government stopped using the encomienda system and provided more protection for the natives.
6. Ferdinand and Isabella were the King and Queen of Spain. They strengthened the royal control of government, filled the royal council with middle class lawyers, and mad the Spanish army the best in Europe by the 16th century. Isabella established the encomienda system in the New World.
7. The encomienda was a class system in the New World. It was instated by Queen Isabella. Encomienda made it so that the Europeans could use the natives as slaves. The system was much like Feudalism in Europe. Viceroys, Peninsulares, Creoles, and Mestizos were all classes in the Encomienda system. First were the Viceroys. Viceroys were rulers who had authority in a colony on behalf of the King and Queen. Second were the Peninsulares. Peninsulares were Spanish born Europeans who lived in the New World. Third were the Creoles. Creoles were American born Europeans. Last were the Mestizos. Mestizos were a mix of Spanish and Indian.
8. The Potosí mines were opened in Peru in 1545. When the mines were opened the value of precious metals imported into Europe quadrupled.
9. The Colombian Exchange was the exchange of plants, animals, culture, and diseases. There was an exchange of plant and animal species that have benefited both sides of the exchange. The introduction of the horse, cow, and grain crops increased food productivity. Crops such as corn, manioc, potato, tobacco, coffee, and chocolate were exchanged. The Europeans brought diseases from Europe to the New World and the diseases killed many of the natives. Some of these diseases were smallpox, measles, and typhus.
10. The main rise in the sugar industry came from the colonization of the Americas. In the 16th century plantations were established on the eastern coast of Brazil and several islands in the Caribbean. The plantations required more workers than they could provide with the native population. Since cane sugar could not be grown in West Africa they started shipping slaves from Africa to the Americas to work ‘on the plantations.
11. The middle passage was the voyage from Africa to the Americas. During the first voyages, up to one third of the slaves died from disease and malnourishment. The mortality rates for crew members sometimes got as high as