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Age of Exploration

The Age of Exploration was inaugurated in many ways when the Ottoman Turks captured Constantinople in 1453. This action cut off many overland trading routes to China and India, forcing Europeans to seek water routes to the riches of the Indies. Paper Masters can compose a custom written research paper on that Age of Exploration follows your guidelines.

During the age of exploration, the following areas were explored:

  • The Atlantic Ocean and a way to the Orient
  • The Pacific Ocean
  • The African Coast
Age of Exploration

Age of Exploration in the 1400's

The Portuguese had begun exploring the coast of Africa as early as 1418, under the leadership of Prince Henry the Navigator. Much of the spices and goods that flowed into Europe were controlled by Italian monopolies, a situation the Portuguese hoped to bypass. Bartolomeu Dias reached the southern tip of Africa in 1488, and Vasco de Gama reached India via the Indian Ocean in 1499.

In 1492, the monarchs of Spain backed Christopher Columbus’ plan to sail westward to the Indies. As is well known, he instead led the way to the discovery of North and South America. Balboa crossed Panama and discovered the Pacific Ocean in 1513, while Ferdinand Magellan's expedition (1519-1522) became the first to circumnavigate the globe.

The Europeans and the Age of Exploration

Soon, other European nations, including the Dutch, French and English were sending out fleet of ships to chart new territories and discover new riches. One of the most prolific explorers was James Cook, who discovered Australia, Antarctica, and numerous islands, including Hawaii. Many explorers were seeking gold or the fabled Northwest Passage, but instead made scientific and geographic discoveries that transformed human knowledge.

Related Research Paper Topics

Age of Discovery term papers look into the beginning of the 15th century, when European mariners set forth to discover new trade routes to the Indies, and discovered new continents.

Fifteenth Century Essays examine how the 15th Century marked the end of the Middle Ages and the beginning of the Modern Era.

Modern Era research papers examine the period of time beginning in the 16th century and discuss the early modern period and the late modern period.