Table of Contents
It has been observed that the people who are linked to Mayan civilization is the Maya who are mainly remembered for their classical civilizations of Mesoamerica. These people rose highly around A.D. 250 in some areas like today’s southern Mexico, Guatemala and El Salvador among other areas. The Maya will be celebrated for their many innovations in writing, art, science and architecture which are used to date. In some ways, these people; said to be the height of pre-Columbian culture.
The Maya had many scientific inventions that where of considerable importance in the earlier civilization. They are the ones who developed astronomy and calendar cal systems. They could study the weather and focus on future changes of weather. They are believed to have formed the best calendar and an elaborate form of the hieroglyphics in America. Some of these inventions are however, said to have been invented by the Olmecs who settled in the Gulf coast. These inventions were utilized by civilizations that came later. The later civilizations also surpassed the inventions of the Maya due to increased technology (Carozza, 2003).
The Maya had one of the best architectural designs with some of their constructions being used as tourist sites even to date. The main architecture they are celebrated for are the temple pyramids, palaces and observatories which were all built without the use of metallic tools. These techniques were of immense importance to later civilizations, and they went beyond the limits of the Maya and made better designs. The Maya also invented hieroglyphic writing, which was also used and further advanced by future civilizations (Orique, 2009).
The Maya also invented pottery which was used by later civilizations. In these, the latter improved and made better changes.
The Maya had much scientific, art, architectural and writing inventions. All these created a basis for future civilizations to advance on the inventions. It would be true to say that the inventions were of immense importance however; the future civilizations went beyond them.
Christopher Columbus as the discoverer of the new world
Christopher Columbus was born in Genoa in 1446, and his father was Domenico Columbus. As a young boy, Christopher would help his father in wool-combing to make the wool to be ready for weaving into clothes. He later went to school and learned how to draw maps and charts. From his little studies, he went further and did miraculous things that made him be referred to as the discoverer of the new world.
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Christopher Columbus was mainly an explorer and a navigator. He is best and widely known as the door opener to the Americans by exploring. Through his little studies, he began his career as a young seaman in the Portuguese merchant machine. In 1942, he sailed from Spain to the Americas through the Atlantic Ocean. He was funded financially and materially be Ferdinand Aragon and Isabella of Castile. As he spread the word to the non-believers, he was named “admiral of the ocean seas.” in his three voyages, he ended up opening the chance for Spain to conquer the Americas. Second Monday of October is celebrated as his day in the United States, due to his discovery of America. He is also remembered for the founding of the Isabella city which was the first city in the European new world. It is through the three voyages that he became to discover the Americas also other sea routes that are of considerable importance even to date (Carozza, 2003).
Despite his outstanding achievements, Columbus was faced by many problems and challenges. For instance the death of his wife which significantly affected him, Also in the sea he met some difficulties that made some of his aspirations not to be realized.
Why both Spanish and the Portuguese were in the late 15th and early 16th centuries uniquely prepared for the conquest and conquest of the Modern World while the rest of Europe was not?
It is during the 15th century that the powers in Europe began to expand their territorial unit, and by 1650, this had affected the whole world. The expansion was both locally and overseas where Christopher Columbus discoveries and achievements were put into use. Portugal and Spain were in the front in this expansion as they began expanding in 1500. The two powers were fully prepared to expand due to some factors that were in favor of this expansion.
This expansion of the two powers was enhanced by social, economical, religious and political factors. The two powers had proficient naval knowledge and tactics. These together with their naval guns and ships urged them on to expand their territory (Orique, 2009).
Religiously they had fanatical obsessions that were advocated for by their long fight with the Moors. This bitterness encouraged them to convert heathen and destroy the non-believers in the name of Christ. They also did not want Islam to continue spreading, as it was doing in Ethiopia; this therefore, meant that they had to spread Christianity to more nations (Carozza, 2003).
Socially the two powers faced rapid population growth in the end of the 14th century. This forced them to expand to find land for settling the surplus population. Also, the need for adventure forced them to venture new areas. Disease was also another main factor that saw them expand. Disease was killing many people, and they therefore, wanted to control this by use of vaccines and medicines they had invented.
Politically the two powers had recently expanded their monarchy and were mainly looking at maritime adventure as their main source of revenue. This therefore, encouraged them to expand (Carozza, 2003).
The Portuguese and Spanish expansion had both negative and positive impacts. For instance, their spread of vaccines substantially saved life. They also changed some cultures in some regions like in Africa through the introduction of Christianity.
Las Casas and his Short Account of the Destruction of the Indies
Las Casas was a Spanish historian of the 16th century also a social reformer. He was the first resident Bishop of Chiapas. He mainly aimed at fighting violent colonial abuse and slavery which was affecting the indigenous people. He was forced to stay back at home, due to his resistance of the new laws.
As a king, Las Casas would have been jailed since he was misleading the indigenous people. Although his efforts resulted to some improvement in the treatment of the indigenous people, he was unfairly treating the king since they were mainly aiming at conquering the islands and many powers were in support of this. His writing was therefore, unrealistic since the strategies that the powers used by then were mainly for the importance of the indigenous people. Therefore, I think that he should have been jailed or taken to captivity. This would at least frighten others who opted to do the same thing. Las Casas used to advocate for the importation of black slaves but did not want the Indian slaves to be imported. This simply shows that he was in support of black-people slavery. He was therefore, supposed to be demoted in any post that he held over the government of the islands (Orique, 2009).
It would be difficult to say that Las Casas was against slavery and other mistreatments of the colonies, and yet he supported the black people slavery. He was therefore, to be kept silent by been demoted, taken to captivity or jailed. This would help not to lure the colonies into opposing the rule from the two powers.