The Astrolabe was invented by the Greeks. This new tool was used to find latitude. This tool, can also be used to locate and predict the positions of the sun, moon, planets, and stars, to cast horoscopes, and determining local time given the latitude and longitude.
Europeans started to build better ships in the 1400s. They developed triangular sails to let the ship zigzag in the wind. Also, they used many masts and smaller sails to make ships sail faster. A new type of rudder made steering easier. All of these inventions came together in Portugal in a ship called the caravel.
Cartography is the science of mapmaking. Ptolemy created the basic system of longitude and latitude that is still used today. Europeans studied the works of al-Idrisi and Ptolemy to figure out how to find a way around Africa in order to get to Asia.
Fall of the Aztec and Inca Empires
The Aztec Empire was defeated by Hernan Cortes. Cortes defeated this large, strong empire by using steel swords, guns, and horses. The Inca Empire was defeated by Francisco Pizarro. Pizarro tricked the ruler, Atahualpa into giving him gold and silver. After he got what he wanted, he charged the emperor of many crimes and sentenced him to death. Because of this, Pizarro became the new emperor of the Inca Empire.
Mercantilism is the idea that a country gains power by compiling a large supply of gold and silver. To do this, they exported to other countries more than they imported from them. Since they exported more than they imported, more gold and silver flowed in from other countries than goes out.
The Columbian Exchange
The Columbian Exchange began when Christopher Columbus brought corn and potatoes back to Europe form America in 1492. This was called a transfer. The transfer was when Europe traded with the world. They traded people, goods, technology, ideas, and even diseases began to spread throughout the different countries.