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Wednesday, January 25, 2017

History Government, and Economy (A World of Trade)

History Government, and Economy
During the centuries that followed the Roman Empire, people became more aware of other peoples and other places. Peoples who lived far from each other began trading and affected each other's ways of life.

A World of Trade
Between 500 and 1500, empires based on trade grew up around the world. You have read that the Roman Empire split into two parts. The western part fell to Germanic invaders. In contrast, the eastern part became the Byzantine (BIH'Zubin*teen) Empire, beginning in the 500s. Its capital, Constantinople, became a crossroads for travel, trade, and the exchange of technology and ideas.

In the 600s another empire the Muslim Empire rose in southwestern Asia. This empire, which was based on the religion of Islam, grew to include Egypt and Persia as well as ancient Arabia.

Farther east in Asia lay still another large empire, the Mongol Empire. Under the leadership of Genghis Khan, the Mongol people conquered China in the 1200s. Genghis Khan's sons and grandsons continued to claim more lands. In just 50 years the Mongol Empire spread across much of Asia. The European explorer Marco Polo visited China during the time of Mongol control. After Polo's return to Europe, reports of his travels caused much interest in China. Soon European merchants began searching for ways to trade with Asia.

The people of Africa, too, took part in world trade and empire building. Between the years 700 and 1500, powerful kingdoms based on trade developed iin western Africa.
The Ghana (GAH»nuh) Empire ruled over many peoples of western Africa. This empire was followed by the Mali Empire, which, in turn, was replaced by the Songhay (SAWNG»hy) Empire. Contact with the Muslim Empire brought many changes to the peoples of western Africa, including the introduction of Islam.

Meanwhile, unknown to the peoples of Asia, Africa, and Europe, the Aztecs and the Incas were conquering their neighbors to build empires in the Americas. All through the Aztec Empire and the Inca Empire, native peoples of the Americas traded goods and ideas.

What important empires rose up in the world between the years 500 and 1500?


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