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Chapter 15

  • Mar 6, 1298


    Marco Polo’s work helped to stimulate the spice trade between Europe and Asia. The book would influence trade between the two continents for centuries.
  • Mar 6, 1350

    The Cannon is Invented

    Cannons were very difficult to move on land. However, they could be mounted on ships and used at sea. This allowed European ships to defend themselves at sea.
  • Mar 6, 1364

    Florence Allows the Import of non-Christian Slaves

    This would allow for the massive importation of slaves into Italy.
  • Mar 6, 1453

    Capture of Constantinople

    The Muslim Ottomans under Sultan Mohammed II captured Constantinople and quickly advanced into the Balkans. This cut off European access to the Eastern Mediterranean and Asia. Due to this, European explorers were forced to find a new route. This also prevented the import of white slaves from the Balkans. As a result, many slaves were imported from Africa after this date.
  • Mar 6, 1487

    Diaz Rounds the Cape of Good Hope

    He was forced to turn back due to a suspected mutiny. However, this demonstrated the success of the Portuguese exploration initiative.
  • Aug 3, 1492

    Christopher Columbus Departs to the West

    He would eventually land in the modern day Caribbean. He landed in Hispnaola in 1496 and claimed the island for the Spanish crown. He enslaves the natives and forced them to labor for the benefit of the crown.
  • Mar 6, 1497

    John Cabot Discovers Newfoundland

    Cabot aimed for Brazil but ended up in Newfoundland by mistake. The next year, he explored the New England Coast as far South as Delaware. His voyages did not find any gold or spice, so King Henry VII lost interest in exploration.
  • Mar 6, 1499

    Vasco da Gama Returns from India

    His ship was loaded with spices and Indian cloth. This demonstrated that exploration of the world was profitable to the Portuguese.
  • Apr 22, 1500

    The Coast of Brazil is Spotted

    It was claimed for the crown of Portugal. This demonstrated that the Portuguese were able to expand their empire by exploring.
  • Period: Mar 6, 1503 to

    Golden Century of Spain

    During this time frame, 16 million kilograms of silver and 185 thousand kilograms of gold entered Spain from the New World. Ironically, this may have damaged the Spanish economy. Philip II often paid his debt with new world metals, causing prices to double and even quadruple throughout Europe. Wages did not increase and people who lived on fixed incomes (such as nobles) were hurt because they could buy less. Food prices also increased, which hurt the poor.
  • Mar 6, 1515

    Casas Urges the Use of African Slaves in the New World

    Bartolome de las Casas, a Spanish Missionary, urged Charles V to end the use of Indian slaves in New World silver mines because it was inhumane. He believed that African slaves should be used instead because they were more suited to the harsh work. This started the mass import of Africans into the New World.
  • Mar 5, 1516

    Concordant of Bologna

    The concordant is significant because Francis of France agreed to recognize the supremacy of the papacy in return for being given the right to appoint all French bishops and abbots. It essentially established France as a Catholic nation.
  • Mar 6, 1519

    Charles V Commissioned Magellen to Find a Direct Route to Asia

    Magellan was killed during his expedition by a warring native tribe. However, his crew succeeded in completing the voyage. They traveled through the Indian Ocean, around the Cape of Good Hope and through the Atlantic Ocean. They returned to Spain in 1522. They proved that the Earth was larger than expected.
  • Mar 6, 1519

    Cortes Arrives in Mexico

    He arrived with 600 men, seventeen horses and ten cannons. Within three years he had captured Montezuma, conquered the Aztec Empire and Established Mexico City as the capitol of New Spain. This demonstrates the impact of Spanish imperialism.
  • Mar 5, 1520

    Dutch Translations of the Bible

    The bible was first translated into Dutch during the 1520s and 1530s. This hlped attract many of the Dutch to Protestantism.
  • Mar 5, 1536


    The book was published by John Calvin in French. Due to this, his ideas gained widespread support.By 1559, there were 40 well-organized Calvinist churches in France.
  • Mar 6, 1536

    Pizarro Conquers the Inca Empire

    He succeeded in conquering the empire with even less resources than Cortes. He established the Spanish viceroyalty in Peru. The actions of both Cortes and Pizarro allowed for the establishment of silver mines in the new world.
  • Mar 5, 1539

    France is Placed Under the Authority of the Royal Court

    This, and Francis's declaration that French was the official language of France, helped to centralize the nation.
  • Mar 6, 1547

    General History of the Indies

    The book gave a detailed eyewitness account of plants, animals and people in the new world. It was widely read in Europe and captured the minds of literate Europeans.
  • Mar 6, 1556

    Charles V Abdicates the Throne

    Charles V divided his kingdom between his two sons. Ferdinand recieved Austria and the Holy Roman Empire while Philip recieved Spain, the Low Countries, Milan, Sicily and Spanish possesions in America. This decision increase hostilities between the Dutch and the crown. They resented the fact that Philip was Spanish.
  • Apr 3, 1559

    Treaty of Cateau-Cambresis

    France and Spain sign the Treaty of Cateau Cambresis. The treaty ends the Habsburg-Valois Wars and acknowledges Spain as the victor. France has to acknowledge Spanish rule of Italy.
  • Mar 6, 1560

    The Start of the Witch Hunts

    Between 1560 and 1660, over fifty thousand people were executed for witchcraft and over 100 thousand were tried for the crime. The majoirty of accused witches were women. THis occured for a variety of reasons including hatred of women and Reformation-era rulers attempting to prove their religious devotion by hunting witches.
  • Mar 6, 1566

    Pope Pius IV Expels the Prostitutes from Rome

    Rome lost so much money and population that the pope had to repeal the order. This demonstrates the significance of prostitution in Europe.
  • Mar 6, 1566

    Calvinist Rioting in the Netherlands

    In the Netherlands, Calvinists destroyed over thirty churches and countless more libraries. The Calvinists were the poorest of the poor and were motivated partially by high grain prices. This also occured because Calvinism taught people to revolt against "illegal" civil authorities.
  • Mar 3, 1568

    Council of Blood

    1,500 men were executed by the Duke of Alva, who had been sent to the Netherlands by Philip to restore order. He opened his own tribunal and violently attacked opposition.
  • Period: Mar 6, 1568 to Mar 6, 1578

    Civil War in the Netherlands

    A civil war was waged in the Netherlands between Catholics and Protestants as well as between the 17 provinces and Spain.
  • Aug 24, 1572

    Saint Bartholomew's Day Massacre

    During the massacre, Catholics killed Gaspard de Coligny, the leader of the Huegnots in France. The violence quickly spread and over 12,000 Huguenots were killed across France. This led to the War of Three Henrys, a religious war between Protestant Henry of Navarre, Catholic Henry of Guise and King Henry II. France was saved from the religous war by moderate Catholics and Protestants called politiques.
  • Period: May 30, 1574 to

    Reign of Henry III

    Henry III was a weak ruler and many nobles took advantage of this by converting to Calvinism. His weakness would eventually led to religious wars in France.
  • Mar 6, 1576

    William the Silent

    The 17 provinces of the Netherlands united under William of Orange. This demonstrates that resistance to Philip's rule was becoming more organized.
  • Mar 6, 1578

    Farnese Intervenes

    Alexander Farnese is sent to the Netherlands to crush the revolt by Philip II. He and his German mercenaries fought by patient siege and captured the seven Southern provinces of the Netherlands. Calvinism was outlawed in these areas.
  • Jan 23, 1581

    The Union of Utrecht

    The seven surviving Northern Dutch provinces formed the Union of Utrecht and and declared their independence from Spain. This demonstrates the determination of the Dutch to fight for their independence.
  • Murder of William the Silent

    William the Silent, one of the Dutch leaders in the Dutch revolt, was murdered. His killing was one of the reasons that Elizabeth I intervened in the conflict.
  • Mary, Queen of Scots, is Beheaded

    Mary was involved in a plot to kill Elizabeth I. This plot had recieved the full backing of King Philip. Due to Mary's execution, Philip would take more drastic measures to defeat the English.
  • Pope Sixtus V Learns of Mary's Death

    The pope offered to pay Philip one million ducats the moment Spanish troops landed in England. This would encourage Philip to invade the nation.
  • The Spanish Armada Attacks England

    130 Spanish vessels met a British fleet of 150 vessels in the English Channel. The British defeated the Spanish due to a combination of factors such as the quality of their ships, storms, inadequate Spanish munitions and rotten Spanish food. Only 65 Spanish ships survived the battle. The results were mixed. Spain rebuilt its navy by 1588 and the flow of precious metals from the new world was not interrupted.
  • Period: to

    Reign of Henry IV

    In order to restore peace to France, Henry of Navarre converted to Catholicism.
  • Shakespeare Gains Recognition as a Playwright

    Shakespeare performed in Lord Chamberlain’s Company and became co-owner of the globe theater, which started to present his plays in 1603. He wrote historical plays such as Richard II, tragedies such as Hamlet and multiple comedies. Shakespeare is important because his plays symbolized many important themes such as individuality, life and death and revenge.
  • Edict of Nantes

    The edict was passed by King Henry IV. It granted the Huguenots liberty of conscience and public worship in 150 fortified towns. The edict helped to end the religious wars in France.
  • The Baroque Style Takes Hold

    The Baroque style emphasized intense emotion and vibrant colors. Some influential artists of the Baroque style are Peter Rubens and Johann Bach (who used tension and emotion in his music). The Baroque style is significant because it came about because of the Catholic Reformation. The papacy and Jesuits wanted to appeal to the common people and kindle their faith, so they encouraged the art form.
  • Protestant Union

    Many German princes formed the Protestant Union to defend themselves from the influences of Catholicism.
  • Quebec is Founded

    The city was the first French Settlement in the Americas. Jacques Cartier had already explored the St. Lawrence region of Canada between 1534 and 1541. This demonstrates how slow the French were to imperialize.
  • End of the Dutch War

    Philip III of Spain agreed to a truce with the Dutch. He essentially recognized their independence.
  • Catholic League

    Catholics responded to the formation of the Protestant Union by forming the Catholic League. This helped to divide Europe into two camps.
  • King James Bible

    King James I created a new authorized bible based on the work of a committee of scholars. He created the bible after he was urged to do so by a group of Puritans in 1604. This demonstrates the efforts of the Puritans and Anglicans to allow the common people to read the Bible. This version of the Bible is also significant because British settlers carried it to the American colonies.
  • Defernestration of Prague

    The event occured when Protestants in Prague hurled two of Ferdinand of Styria's officials out of a window seventy feet in the air (although they both survived). This event started the Thirty Years War.
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    Thirty Years War

    The war saw conflict between Protestant and Catholic Europe. The war lasted for thirty years because no side was strong enough to win outright. The war brought great destruction to Germany.
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    Bohemian Phase

    The Bohemian phase of the Thirty Years War starts. It saw the Catholic League, led by Ferdinand of Styria, fight against the Protestant Union, led by Fredrich the Elector of Palatinate, in Bohemia. The conflict starts when two of Ferdinand’s officials were thrown out of a window by Protestants. This stage of the war was a Catholic victory and the Protestants were wiped out of Bohemia.
  • Death of Native Americans

    By this year, the Andea population had decreased from 1.8 million to 600 thousand people. This demonstrates the impact disease had on native populations.
  • Battle of White Mountain

    Protestant forces were defeated and Ferdinand systematically eradicated Protestantism in Bohemia.
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    Danish Phase

    The Danish phase of the Thirty Years War. King Christian IV of Denmark intervened on the side of the Protestants. He was ineffective and the Danish phase saw the Catholic invasion of Silesia, Schleswig, the Baltic and Pomerania.
  • Peak of Habsburg Power

    During this time, Jesuits persuaded the emperor to issue the Edict of Restitution. The edict stated that all Catholic property lost since 1552 was to be restored and that only Catholics and Lutherans would be allowed to practice their faiths. The events convinced many Protestants that the balance of power in Europe was at stake.
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    Swedish Phase

    This stage of the war was marked by the intervention of the Swedes. Gustavus Adolphus led a small but well disciplined army equipped with superior muskets. He was funded by Cardinal Richelieu of France, who wanted to weaken Habsburg power in Europe. Adolphus was killed in 1632, but he was able to save the Protestant cause.
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    International Phase

    This phase of the war saw the intervention of Catholic France on the side of the Protestants (French foreign policy was based on weakening the Catholic Habsburgs). Cardinal Richelieu declared war on Spain in 1635 and continued to provide aid to the Swedes and Germans.
  • Peace of Westphalia

    Th peace officially ended the Thirty Years War. It gave independence to over three hundred German princes, who would govern their territory and make peace and war. The Habsburgs were weakened, Sweden recieved a large cash settlement and the papacy was denied the right to intervene in German religious affairs. It also applied the terms of the Peace of Augsburg to Calvinism.
  • Dutch East Indies Company Intrudes on American Trade

    They gained possesion of a majority of African and American trade.