The first proven arrival of Europeans in the Caribbean and South
America occurred in the late 1400s. Why would a person
get into a ship and sail thousands of miles into the unknown?
Keep in mind that traveling by sea in the 1400s was very
different from sea travel today. Many of the navigation
tools available now where not available then.
Myths about the dangers of sea travel discouraged some
from attempting long journeys.
Why in 1492 did Christpher Columbus sail the ocean blue?
Why had no one attempted this earler? Or had they?
Some propose that Columbus was sailing to prove that the
world was round. However, he was actually sailing to
find an all water route to Asia. He was seeking the riches of the
east, in search of a chapter way to bring perfumes, spices, silks
and jewels to Europe.
Now, you might be wondering how the Europeans knew
that perfumes, spices, silk and jewels existed in the
middle east. well, that is a great story that goes back to the late
1000s. During this time, the Europeans belonged to
the catholic church. The holy land of the middle east was very
important to the catholics, because it was related
to the life of jesus. although the arab muslims ruled the
holy land, they allowed the catholics to visit the
holly land for hundreds of years.
Unfortunately, in the 1000s, the holy land was taken over
by the seljuk turks who often attacked and killed christians
visiting the holy land.
How do you think that the pope and the rest of european christians
responded? The pope called for a crusade to take the
holy land from turks. for two hundred years,
the christians fought a series of holy wars, but were
unsuccessful in reclaiming the holy land.
although the christians did not win the crusades, they did
discover many new things. they bought silks, spices,
perfume and cotton cloth from arab traders. the traders brought
these goods to the middle east from distant asia.
goods were not the only items encountered in the holy land
Sheipbuilders and sailors learned many things from the musilms.
Direction finding devices, such as the astrolabe and compass
made navigation easier. sailing inventions, suck as the rudder
allowedsailors to venture farther and farther and farther
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