Reading34-1 (dragged) 7

Reading34-1 (dragged) 7 - 8 Reading 34-1 so that by 1560,...

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8 Reading 34-1 so that by 1560, and measured against gold, sugar was barely half the price in Europe that it had commanded in 1500. Though prices would rise steeply after 1570, the quantities involved were still tiny in comparison to the trade today. It is certain that the whole of Europe’s sugar consumption for the year 1600 could be contained in one modern bulk carrier, far less sugar than is eaten in 1 year in present-day New York City, London, or Hong Kong. Prince Henry the Navigator, perhaps obsessed with the myth of Atlantis, sent many ships along the coast of West Africa, as well as to the East Atlantic islands—the Canaries and the Azores. One of his ships, returning fruitlessly from Equatorial Africa in 1443, fell upon a galley and captured and enslaved the crew. These men, who were of mixed Arab-Negro parentage and Moslems, claimed that they were of a proud race and un f t to be bondsmen. They argued forcefully that there were in the hinterland of Africa many heathen blacks, the children of Ham, 12 who made excellent slaves, and whom they could enslave in exchange for their freedom. Thus began the modern slave trade—not the transatlantic trade, which was yet to come, but its precursor, the trade between Africa and southern Europe. The novel feature of this particular slave trade was not only that the slaves were Negroes and the trad-
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This note was uploaded on 11/18/2011 for the course HIST 302 taught by Professor Jensic during the Summer '10 term at Purdue.

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