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People in History
Transcript of People in History
People in History - Christopher Columbus
Aim: To examine the Spanish voyages of Exploration
While the Portuguese sailed around Africa to reach India and the Spice Islands, the Spanish sailed west across the Atlantic Ocean.
The inspiration from this came from Christopher Columbus.
The Spanish Voyages of Exploration
On his voyages he heard stories that led him to believe that there was land to the west.
He studied the writings of Ptolemy and Marco Polo.
He believed the land to the west was Asia or islands off Asia.
He believed that the world was round and he thought if he sailed west he would reach China or Japan.
He misjudged the distance it would take to travel round the globe.
Why Columbus Sailed West
On 3 August 1492, Cloumbus set sail with a carrack and two caravels, the Santa Maria, the Nina and the Pinta, from the port of Palos in Spain.
The Santa Maria was the flagship.
The ships carried about ninety sailors, including a surgeon, cooks and servants. There were no women or priests on board.
Columbus' three ships were small. The Santa Maria was the largest of them. It had two square sails and a lateen sail.
The crew were fed one hot meal a day, which was cooked in the firebox on deck. They also had wine or water. The ships also carried gunpowder and cannonballs, as well as items for trading.
What part did Prince Henry the Navigator play in the Portuguese Explorations?
What part did Bartholomew Dias play?
Describe the role of Vasco da Gama?
Christopher Columbus was born in Genoa in Italy.
He became a sailor and gained experience in many voyages along the Atlantic coast.
Ferdinand and Isabella
Columbus tried to persuade the kings of Portugal and England to support him in a voyage of discovery, but he failed.
Insted he won the support of King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain.
They had just defeated the Muslims in Spain and now wanted to compete with the Portuguese for the rich spice trade.
They sponsored ships and provided men and supplies.
They also said that Columbus would become governor of all the lands he dicovered and would receive the title of Admiral of the Ocean Sea.
Across the Atlantic
Columbus stopped at the Canary Islands for repairs and fresh supplies of water and food.
Then in September, he headed out into the unknown waters of the Atlantic Ocean.
Columbus was fortunate because he was helped by the following winds.
He also needed to calm his crew, who feared that if they travelled too far they would not be able to find their way back.
Across the Atlantic
As a result he kept two logbooks - one recorded the true distance travelled, while the other recorded a shorter version of the distance covered.
When land was still not in sight after four weeks at sea, he told his crew that the birds they saw were proof that land was nearby.
Columbus was forced to promise to return home if he did not reach land within a few days.
On the morning of the 12th October 1492, the Pinta fired a cannon shot - this was a prearranged signal that land was in sight.
Columbus and his crew landed on San Salvador in the Bahama Islands.
He later explored Cuba and Hispaniola. He thought he had found Japan, but he was puzzled that there were no great cities similar to the ones written by Marco Polo.
The Santa Maria ran aground and was badly damaged.
With the help of the native people and his men they unloaded the ship.
The timber of the ship was used to build a fort called La Navidad in Hispaniola.
Columbus left about forty officers and men behind to man the fort, and he set sail for Spain in 1493.
After a stormy voyage he returned to Palos and later to the court of Ferdinand and Isabella.
He and his sailors brought back gold and pineapples, parrots and six of the men whom Columbus now called Indians.
He was honoured and praised by the king and queen.
Columbus made three more voyages to 'the Indies', as he called them.
On the second voyage he learned that the men he had left in the fort in Hispaniola had all been killed in clashes with islanders.
He explored Jamaica, Puerto Rico and the coast of South America, but he still thought he had found Asia.
He brought settlers to live in Hispaniola and sugar can to grow on the islands.
The settlers were often very cruel to the Indians.
They forced the Indians to search for gold, and tortured and killed many of them.
Columbus was a poor ruler, and after his third voyage he was brought back to Spain in chains.
He died a bitter and disappointed man.
The new continent that he found is now named after another Italian explorer, Amerigo Vespucci, who stated that this was not Asia.
Gradually Europeans realised that they had discovered a New World.
The Treaty of Tordesillas
The discovery of Columbus led to conflict with the Portuguese.
To prevent a war Spain and Portugal signed the Treaty of Tordesillas in 1494.
Results of Columbus' First Voyage
Columbus discovered a new continent.
Spain created a great empire and grew rich and powerful.
Spanish culture was to spread to the new continent.
The Treaty of Tordesillas was agreed.