The Age of Discovery -or Age of Exploration- is the period when the pioneer Portuguese and Spanish navigators carried out long-distance maritime travels in search of alternative trade routes to the Indies, moved by the trade of gold, silver and spices.
From the early 15th century to the early 17th century, Europeans engaged in an intensive exploration of the world, establishing contacts with Africa, the Americas, Asia and Oceania and mapping the planet.
The Age of Discovery is seen as a bridge between the Middle Ages and the Modern era, along with its contemporary Renaissance movement, triggering the early modern period and the rise of European nation-states.
European overseas expansion led to the rise of colonial empires, with the contact between the Old and New Worlds producing the Columbian Exchange: a wide transfer of plants, animals, foods, human populations (including slaves), communicable diseases, and culture between the Eastern and Western hemispheres.
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Martes 16, agosto, 2011