Chapter 15- European Exploration and Conquest

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European Exploration and Conquest

Mexica Empire

Also known as the Aztec Empire, a large and complex Native American civilization in modern Mexico and Central America that possessed advanced mathematical, astronomical, and engineering technology.

Inca Empire

The vast and sophisticated Peruvian empire centered at the capital city of Cuzco that was at its peak from 1438 until 1532.

Viceroyalities

The name for the four administrative units on Spanish possessions in the Americas: New Spain, Peru, New Granada, and La Plata.

Treaty of Tordesillas

The 1494 agreement giving Spain everything to the west of an imaginary line drawn down the Atlantic and giving Portugal everything to the east.

Encomienda System

A system whereby the Spanish crown granted the conquerors the right to forcibly employ groups of Indians; it was a disguised form of slavery.

Conquistador

Spanish for "conqueror"; Spanish soldier-explorers, such as Hernando Cortés and Francisco Pizarro, who sought to conquer the New World for the Spanish crown.

Caravel

A small, maneuverable, three-mast sailing ship developed by the Portuguese in the fifteenth century that gave the Portuguese a distinct advantage in exploration and trade.

Columbian Exchange

The exchange of animals, plants, and diseases between the Old and the New Worlds.

Ptolemy's Geography

A second century C.E. work that synthesized the classical knowledge of geography and introduced the concepts of longitude and latitude. Reintroduced to Europeans in 1410 by Arab scholars, its ideas allowed cartographers to create more accurate maps.

The European voyages of the fifteenth century derived from a desire to share in the wealth of what?

The Indian Ocean trade.

Who was Prester John?

A mythical Christian king in Africa believed to be a descendant of one of the three kings who visited Jesus after his birth.

What best characterizes the role of Europe in the world trading system prior to the voyage of Columbus?

Europe was a minor outpost that produced few products desired by other civilizations.

What did the Dutch East India Company do in the seventeenth century?

It took over much of the East Indies from Portugal.

The motivations for European explorers did not include what?

Population pressure.

Who were the group of people who benefited the most from large price increases in the sixteenth century?

The middle class.

After losing access to slave trading from the Black Sea, the Genoese obtained many slaves except?

Portuguese peasants.

Who resisted the efforts of the Portuguese to establish themselves in the Indian Ocean trade?

Muslim-controlled port cities.

When Vasco da Gama arrived in the Indian Ocean, how did he navigate these unknown waters?

He hired an Indian pilot as his guide.

What did Columbus believe he had found when he arrived in the Caribbean?

Islands off the coast of Japan.

What did the Treaty of Tordesillas do?

Divided the Atlantic Ocean with an imaginary line, giving Spain control of everything west of the line and Portugal everything east of the line.

How did Magellan's circumnavigation of the globe affect Spanish colonization?

The great distance of the Pacific convinced the Spanish to abandon efforts to trade in Asia and develop their American colonies instead.

How did the English and French seek a route to East Asia?

They sought a Northwest Passage across North America.

What became Cortés's crucial advantage in his conquest of the Mexica Empire?

Cortés was able to exploit internal dissention within the Mexica empire.

Portugal's participation in European expansion was given critical support by who?

Prince Henry.

How did the Spanish respond to the trap set by the Inca king Atahualpa?

The Spanish ambushed and captured Atahualpa, holding him for ransom and then executing him.

How did the Spanish monarchy seek to maintain its control over its colonies?

The monarchy established intendants with broad administrative and financial authority who were responsible directly to the monarchy.

At the time of his death, where did Columbus believe the islands he found were located?

Off the coast of Asia.

How did the encomienda system function?

The Spanish Crown granted conquerors the right to employ or demand tribute from groups of Native Americans in exchange for providing food and shelter.

How did French colonies respond to the problem of the low migration levels from France?

Colonial officials encouraged French traders to form ties with and marry native women.

How did Portuguese merchants obtain most of their slaves in Africa?

They traded for slaves with local leaders.

Which of the following best characterizes the immigration patterns (forced and unforced) of Europeans and Africans to the Americas between 1500 and 1800?

About four times as many Africans migrated to America as did Europeans.

What was the primary cause of the emergence of inflation in Spain in the sixteenth century?

The inability of Spanish agriculture and manufacturing to meet the growing demand for goods.

In chronological order, what were the three successive commercial empires established by Europeans in the fifteenth, sixteenth, and seventeenth centuries?

Portuguese, Spanish, and Dutch.

How did Europeans initially justify the enslavement of Africans?

Enslavement benefited the Africans by bringing Christianity to them.

How did justifications for slavery change from the fifteenth to the eighteenth century?

Arguments supporting slavery began to focus more on science and nature and less on religion.

How did Michel de Montaigne offer a counterpoint to Europe's growing imperial activities?

Montaigne rejected the notion that one culture was superior to another.

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