Choose 5 to answer



Pick 5 of the questions below to answer.



Each answer must be a minimum of 500 words, double spaced.


Your answers must address all aspects of the question using specific historical facts from the readings. (Names, dates, events etc)



Answer these questions in as much detail as possible. Be specific with your answers.


Your answers should cover who, what, when, where and then go beyond.


 Min: 500 words per essay.


This is an open book exam.



Transition to Modern Times, 1200 to 1500 CE


  1. Compare and contrast overseas commerce in the European, Muslim, and East Asian contexts between 1400 and 1650.
  2. Compare and contrast the population size of the various major civilizations of the world in 1400 and 1660.
  3. What role did religion play in politics and commerce in the various cultures of the world between 1400 and 1650? Which cultures showed the most religious toleration?
  4. Why was the discovery of gold and silver by the Spaniards in the New World so important for world commerce after 1560?
  5. Despite expansion into what became known as the Americas coupled with a great increase in wealth, why was Europe still not able to challenge the major empires of the Middle East and Asia militarily during the period 1500–1600?
  6. List the assets and liabilities of the Chinese civilization under the Ming dynasty. Why did they not expand into other areas of the world with the same desires as the various European nation states?
  7. Compare and contrast the development of the Ottoman, Safavid, Mughal, and Ming bureaucracies with the governments of the various European monarchies.
  8. Assess the impact of the European trade in enslaved Africans on Africa, Europe, and the Americas.


The World Changes, 1400 to1500 CE


  1. What purposes did the great Chinese voyages during the Ming era serve?
  2. Compare the extent of the Ottoman Empire with earlier civilizations and discuss the possibility that the Ottoman Empire re-unified the traditional centers of civilization (Mesopotamia, Egypt, and the Eastern Mediterranean world).
  3. Why did the Portuguese sail south and the Spanish sail west in their voyages of exploration?
  4. What impacts did the expansion of European and Islamic powers have on Africa during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries?
  5. What obstacles prevented Charles V, the accidental heir to the Habsburg and Spanish Empires, from consolidating imperial power?

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