Portugal was one of the, if not the only, technological and economic geniuses of the fifteenth century. As a result of their genius, Portugal was able to build one of the first caravels and sail around the coast of Africa in an attempt to find a sea route to India. As a result of this attempt,
In 1488, Bartholomeu Dias led the Portuguese exploration efforts by reaching the Cape of Good Hope. Then in 1498, Vasco da Gama was able to sail all of the way to India via travel around the Cape of Good Hope and into the Indian Ocean. Due to these voyages Europeans were able to obtain spices and other goods from this region. By opening up trading routes from Europe to Asia the diet of the average citizen became richer; helping to extend the life expectancy rate. In addition to trading opportunities opened up with these countries the Europeans used these journeys to spread Christianity. Whether this is a positive or negative effect is based on every person’s personal preference. Also, due to these explorations the population of the world appeared
People of the early African kingdoms were able to create successful trade routes with Europe and Asia, become very wealthy from conquering and gaining land, and were able to have a strong central government. All of this was done before the Europeans had reached Africa. Trade flourished on the East African coast, especially when trading was established with India and Arabia. African kingdoms were prosperous, because of their success with not only trading but also with their ability to conquer land. A governmental structure is key to allowing any kingdom to thrive, and the African people were able to achieve this.
- Because Spain and Portugal were rivals, they were always trying to out beat each other. Since the Portuguese set up trading posts in Africa first, other European countries started and later on Spain set up posts too. Because the Portuguese didn’t like taking water routes, it took them longer to get to India through land to get spices and jewels. While this was happening, the Spanish people became unified and seeing that they were now stronger, planned to outstrip their rivals of the Indian
The journeys represent the European slave trader’s way of human trade labor to be secured. The millions of people who lived along the coastline of Africa were a major slave trade supply. The Portuguese began to exploit the Africans with a slave trade from Africa to America in 1526 by the Portuguese. Although slaves were in on a high demand the slave traders were not able to keep up, because of this they had to go on a different route. Brazil was known to be the sugar producer in this era. An old saying by Marcus Rediker, “That sugar was made with blood.”
The controversial scholarly journal of Robert S Wolff explores the history of the first trade encounters between the Portuguese in Africa and Asia, controversy lying in its separation from the Western narrative. Throughout the article, the author is trying to figure out the motives or other considerations playing a role behind the actions of Portuguese and other Europeans, such as choosing violent ways of making a profit in the lands of Africa and Asia, rather than using the existing trade networks, to emerge as the world ruler. In his view, Europeans had claimed themselves to be the “center of the world” way before they have risen to that title. European countries were looking for profitable trade in wealthy lands full of gold, consequently lack of resources and other valuable goods became a barrier to their success in the already existing channels.This is seen in da Gamma’s first encounter with the local ruler of Calicut, where his gifts were considered substandard to that of the poorest merchant, as seen by the local advisor.
The Portuguese had managed to circumnavigate Africa and were poised to establish trade with "the East Indies" (all of Asia). The Canaries, the Azores and the Madeira island groups had all been discovered within the past century. If nothing else, Columbus's scheme might turn up more islands, and in the unlikely event he was right about reaching "Farther India" in the western sea—and actually returned—it would have been a gamble worth
Marco Polo went on a 20 year voyage to what he thought was Asia and returned with stories of the mysterious land that further pushed Europeans to find a new trade route. Before the 15th century sub Saharan Africa was unknown to Europe. However; due to new and improved ships the journey became more plausible. Portuguese quickly set up trading posts for gold and enslaved African. Slave trading soon became big business. And finally Portuguese sailor Vasco de Gama made it to India around the tip of Africa in 1498. Meanwhile the unification in Spain inspired them to also look for a
Gil Eannes was a Portuguese explorer who was the first European to travel past Cape Bojador and return safely. During his first trip down to Cape Bojador, he landed on a desert near the coast, only to find a few plants, which included “Saint Mary’s roses.” He then brought the plants home to show as proof of traveling the western coast of Africa. About one year later, he journeyed back to Cape Bojador and sailed past it. After passing it, they reached a bay and saw men and camels there. When sailing down, he traveled with another man, collecting seal skins to bring back to Europe to trade. This marked the first commericial load being brought back to Europe from the section of Africa. Besides seal skins being brought to Europe, Prince Henry’s crew also captured some Africans to take back to Portugal. When other sailors returned back to the same spot, they also returned with some more Africans to take back to Portugal. A few years later, at the Bay of Argium, Prince Henry built a fort and the Bay became the center of slave trade. When Prince Henry built this fort at the Bay of Argium, he started what is known today as the transatlantic slave trade. During the transatlantic slave trade, more than thirty-five thousand voyages containing slaves were taken. On these thirty-five thousand or so voyages, more than twelve million Africans were transported from Africa between the Americas, making this one of the biggest forced movement of humans in history. After establishing slave trade, Prince Hnery sent a Venetian navigator by the name of Alvise da Cadamosto on two travels. When the first travel, Cadamosto arrived at the Gambia River. One year later on his second travel, he went from the recently explored Gambia River to the Geba River. When he tried to trade with the Africans settled there, he was
Dias was Portuguese. Dias traveled to the Indies by sailing around Africa. He was the first European explorer to sail around the southern tip of Africa which is now the “Cape of Good Hope”. “On October 10th, 1487 King John II of Portugal assigned Bartolomeu Dias to sail to the southern tip of Africa in hopes of finding a trade route that would lead them to India.” He was a member of the royal Portuguese court where he was chosen to lead the voyage to locate the trade route to India. His expeditions began in the summer of 1487 and it lasted for up to 16 months or one year and four months. On his trip for return, they saw the tip of Africa but missed it because of a storm. Which means there was a storm on his voyage back where he came from. Dias
Many European countries sent explorers to discover a new sea route to the East Indies, which were abundant with spices and valuable trading items. Vasco da Gama had made many brave accomplishments. On November 22, 1497 he rounded the Cape of Good Hope. Da Gama's first route took him closer to South America, but he had to go out that far to avoid the trouble of the coast. Unexpectedly, the first Portuguese sailors experienced stormy weather, strong winds, and massive currents closer to Africa. Da Gama shortened time of the trip by increasing the miles in order to avoid potential hazardous disasters of the coast. By going so far out from the coast, Vasco's crew sailed the longest voyage, which covered four thousand miles before the winds blew them back to Africa just north of the Cape of Good Hope. After setting sail once again, Vasco went so far west, that he was only six hundred miles away from South America. On November 4th, after ninety-six days in open seas, da Gama reached the Cape of Good Hope in half the time as Dias. Da Gama's stop in Africa, on the second half of his voyage, showed him the real life of the African people. Many were friendly. The differences between them were met with delight, trading, music, and dancing. Although, in the end, the Africans refused to help and destroyed the stone markers (called Padroes) and desecrated sacred crosses, which da Gama left to mark his route and claim territory for Portuguese trading posts. A few days later da Gama stopped in Mossel Bay to leave the supply ship behind, because it wasn't needed any more. After Mossel Bay, da Gama took a stop in Mozambique to recover and trade with the natives as well as build another Padroes. While da Gama was in Mozambique, he saw the most amazing riches from India. One sailor wrote in his diary that Arab ships were “laden with gold, silver, cloves, pepper, ginger, pearls, jewels, and rubies... all of which were used
Nevertheless, Bartolomeu accomplished a trip where he rounded the Cape of Good Hope, which is the southern tip of Africa. In 1495, King John II passed away six years after Bartolomeu Dias’s achievement, and the late king’s cousin, Manuel I, took power. Even though Manuel was only twenty-four years old, he wanted to expand Portugal’s trade routes. Instead of Bartolomeu Dias taking the honor of the captain of the fleet, Manuel surprisingly chose the thirty-seven-year-old da Gama. “According to Gaspar Correa, an eyewitness that was in court that day described how Manuel chose da Gama that day as the captain of the fleet. “One day the king, sitting in his hall of business at a table with his officers, giving orders, by chance… raised his eyes, and Vasco da Gama happened to cross through the hall… The king, setting eyes upon him… was transported [entranced]” (Calvert 12). “Upon choosing da Gama, King Manuel told da Gama, “My heart tells me that my desire will be accomplished by you…[and] to you alone, I give command”(Calvert
Once the Portuguese heard of the gold centered around West Africa, they were eager to gain access to it. They established trading stations and built forts along the coast, and it was well protected from the rival European traders. Coming in contact with some of the African kingdoms, instead of fighting them they
As the explorations of Spain and Christopher Columbus emerged in the late fifteenth century, Portugal also looked towards expansion. Given their conquest of the Moors and their unique geographic location, Portugal also looked to the sea. Expansion of trade with the east became the primary driver for the Portuguese. A sea route to the east could meet the desired ends versus an overland route through Muslim held territories. Sailing along the east coast of Africa, the Portuguese first rounded the Cape of Good Hope in 1487 A.D.
In 1431, the Azores were discovered and colonized. In 1443, the Bay of Arguin was colonized, and later, the Portuguese constructed a fort. By 1462, the Portuguese had explored the coast of Africa as far as present day Sierra Leone These colonies produced extozic trade goods, such as wine, spices, ivory, gold, and herbs, making the Portigal not only wealthy but also powerful. In 1498, the Cape of Good Hope was discovered, but Henry never lived to see this great discovery. He died at the age of 66 in 1460. His legacy lived on. Henry's navigation and discoveries officially began the Age of Discovery, and it was not long before other European nations joined.