Blue Highlight: Vocab word

Green Highlight: Definition

Pink Highlight: Name (person)

Orange Highlight: Information about that person

Purple Highlight: Name (not person)

Yellow Highlight: Information about that thing

Bold: Important information

WH1 Topic 17 #1 Study Guide


Important Names (people):

Marco Polo: A European explorer in the 1200s who traveled from Venice to China to visit the court of Kublai Khan, and wrote a book about his experiences (The Travels).

Hernán Cortés: Spanish conqueror of Mexico, believed that the people must make sure that indigenous people were inducted into Catholicism. Conquered Tenochtitlán and killed Montezuma II.

Prince Henry the Navigator: Sponsored Portuguese fleets. Bartholomeu Dias was a sailor who reached the Cape of Good Hope, and returned.

Vasco da Gama: Went around Africa, then cut across the Indian Ocean to get to the coast of India. In may 1498, he arrived at Calicut. He got rich from selling Indian spices.

Christopher Columbus: “Discovered” the Americas, was sponsored by Queen Isabella of Spain.

Queen Isabella of Spain: Funded Columbus’ expedition

Ferdinand Magellan: In 1519, he sailed from Spain to find a sea passage through the Americas. He passed through the Strait of Magellan, by the tip of South America, to the pacific ocean. However, Indigenous people killed him in the Philippines and only one of his ships returned to Spain.

John Cabot: A Venetian seaman who explored the New England coastline with England in 1497.

Amerigo Vespucci: A Florentine, sailed on several voyages to the Americas. America was named after him and his letters.

Montezuma II / Moctezuma II: 1510, he was the Aztec ruler. The Spanish took him hostage.

Francisco Pizarro: (1531) Landed on the Pacific coast of South America with 180 men, brought new weapons to the Inca, brought smallpox, used the civil war to his advantage to take over Atahuallpa.

Samuel de Champlain: Founded Quebec

Names (other):

The Travels: A book Marco Polo wrote about his journey.

Treaty of Tordesillas: Created a boundary line going North to South through the Atlantic Ocean and the east part of South America. Portugal got the East, Spain got the West.

Cape of Good Hope: The southern tip of Africa.

Melaka: A thriving spice trade port on the Malay Peninsula

Tenochtitlán: The Aztec capital, which was located in what is now Mexico City. Hernán Cortés conquered it.

Veracruz: Where Cortes landed, on the Gulf of Mexico.

Cuzco: The Inca capital.

Moluccas: Known as Spice Islands

Tlaxcala: An Aztec city-state, Cortes’ most important alliance.

Lima: The place where Pizarro established his new capital in Inca.

New Netherland: The Dutch’s settlement in America. It extended from the southern coast of New York to present-day Albany, in the North-West.

Quebec: The first permanent French settlement in the Americas.


Overseas: Beyond or across the sea

Caravel: A boat that was an improvement over Galleons, that was lighter, faster, and had a shallower bottom, giving it the ability to travel closer to shore.

Lateen: Triangular

Cartography: The art and science of mapmaking

Astrolabe: Ancient GPS, determined one’s line of latitude and if you were north or south of the equator. Only worked with sun/moon light.

Gyres: Spiraling currents

Trade winds: Winds blowing South or West in the North Atlantic

Westerlies: Winds blowing West -> East

Conquistadors: Spanish conquerors of the Americas

Colony: A settlement of people living in a new territory, linked with the parent country by trade and direct government control

Assimilation: When a minority group is forced to adopt the ways of the majority group

Motives and Means

Prince Henry's Navigation School

Portuguese Explorers

Spanish Explorers