What Factors Facilitated European Exploration in the 15th Century

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Marlon Constance Reg no. 2013070012 West Indian History HIST147-SOUTH-LG Professor-Lisa Gonzales 1) From your knowledge of history, what factors facilitated European maritime exploration in the 15th century? (what / who gave them the tools they needed) The fifteenth century saw an upsurge in maritime exploration in Europe which was led by the Portuguese. Several factors contributed to this, and I am now going to take an in depth look at these factors Firstly the Portuguese had a seventy year head start over the Spanish due in part to the distraction caused by the Spanish civil war and the Reconquista of Granada. The Moors who were a group of Moslems conquered the Iberian Peninsula in 711. Over the next 750 years there would be numerous battles between the Christian and Muslims to gain control; it came to end in 1492 when the last of the Moorish kingdoms were driven from the Iberian Peninsula. This period is known as the Reconquista. The Muslims during the 13th century made a lot of strides in geography, mathematics astronomy and medicine. With the influx of Muslims the European nations became immersed in their philosophies; many people became frightened by the Muslim influence consequently there was a demand to increase the centralization of the Christian Kingdom which helped to unite Europe. This need to spread Christianity was one of the pivotal factors for the exploration in that time. The Europeans also wanted to establish their own economic links with the east to obtain gold, silver and other precious metals and in so doing they would find new sea routes to Asia. Portugal’s geographic location was ideal for the natural development of a sea fearing tradition. Their position on the west coast of the Iberian Peninsula contributed to them becoming the preeminent European pioneer in maritime exploration of the African coast. Portugal benefited
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