What Was Columbian Exchange History Essay

Columbian Exchange defines the clip of the American adventurer Christopher Columbus ‘s attempts to advance agricultural merchandises, farm animal and diverse cultural influences being diffused throughout the full Western and Eastern hemispheres. It all started with Columbus ‘s first visit to America in 1492. This twelvemonth is deemed to be the start of the epoch of trading and concern. Unfortunately these good merchandises were non the lone things introduces to the native people. They were besides greeted by new diseases. Before Columbus, the indigens considered poxs, TB and a few other diseases to be their lone jobs but they were subsequently on attacked by a broad array of diseases that included variola, rubeolas, epidemic parotitiss, whooping cough, cholera and xanthous febrility. The recognition of the term “ Columbian Exchange ” goes to Alfred Crosby who wrote a book in 1972 with the same rubric.

The Columbian Exchange played a polar function in presenting the Eastern and Western hemispheres to new agricultural harvests. Potatos were seldom adult outside America. Subsequently on it became a critical ingredient for Ireland and Russia. Lusitanian bargainers transported peanuts and maize to Africa. Their concern was rather booming because Southern Africa was non fertile for the cultivation of these stalwart workss. Research workers believe that this was the clip variola made its official introduction in America in 1519. It ‘s really first onslaught savaged the half population of Santo Domingo. Subsequently on it ravaged the Antilles Islands making its manner to the Mexican mainland. Finally it reached South America. Smallpox was the ground of the slow obliteration of the Incan civilisation in 1520. I simple words, we can province that it was Columbus ‘s ocean trip that changed the epidemiological landscape of this universe for good.


If we shed some visible radiation on what Columbus had planned to make after detecting America, the first thing on his top precedence list was the constitution of a sugar mill in the portion that he discovered normally known as the New World now. He was the proprietor of sugar mills in Canary Islands and Madeira. In order to rush the procedure, he brought sugar cane chaffs along with himself on his 2nd visit.

( Miller n.d. )


During the clip of Columbian Exchange, a multiple figure of points were provided to Spanish governments as a menu. Before the first visit of Columbus, guinea hog was considered to be the meat forte of Peru. But the adventurer brought with himself new dishes in the signifier of porc and beef as their particular points joined with cheese and milk. Chicken, sheep and caprine animal meat was subsequently on added to these spots and pieces. Columbus extended his list and brought garbanzos, wheat and vegetable seeds in the visits shortly after. The coming of new merchandises coming it at a steady gait facilitated in the improvement of the nutrition of the society as a whole which resulted in population growing. A peculiarly celebrated Italian dish in the southern climates known as Arrabbiata sauce was successful because of the usage of Piper nigrum. Finally the Piper nigrums made their manner into India and China. India being the Centre of spicy nutrient welcomed the new spices with unfastened weaponries and its usage flourished within no clip. Columbus must be thanked for conveying sweet murphies, green beans, corn and cassava to a antecedently narrow minded continent. Chocolate is besides considered to be a premier and prized add-on to the points traded by the business communities of that clip.

( Schwartz n.d. )


Transmission of diseases was the lone harmful parts of the Columbian Exchange. America is said to hold introduced Syphilis to the old universe through travel paths on Spanish ships. Many experts believe that Central America is the birth topographic point of Aids and is considered to be its origin point. A theory suggests that Aids is a transitioned signifier of a virus that crossed into the human strain from monkeys. Social alterations have been the chief ground of unleashing of Aids in the new universe. Equatorial Africa was plagued with Aids during the 1960 ‘s because of the growing of metropoliss, commercial hauling and the on-going war.

If we shine the limelight on the history of variola and rubeolas, we have to travel as far back as 1520 when Cortes had attacked the capital of the Aztec imperium. He did non win this war with the usage of sheer power, Equus caballuss, cannons or crossbows. The epidemic of variola and rubeolas destroyed the great Aztec imperium which in bend succumbed to its fierce onslaught. A group of historiographers are of the position that the Aztec physicians could non calculate out the roots of variola because this disease was non endemic to them. Their deficiency of cognition about this disease proved lifelessly for them and in consequence smallpox spread like wildfire killing each and every susceptible human being in its way. Historians besides suggest that a black adult male was responsible for transporting the variola virus into Tenochtitlan. An Aztec warrior discovered a black adult male who was on the threshold of decease. The cause of his decease was non diagnosed to be the lesions of conflict but was the symptoms of some signifier of unwellness. He was coughing and hemorrhage, had an redness of nose and pharynx and his full organic structure was covered with ulcers of multiple sizes runing from little to really large. The travel logs of Columbus reveal a batch of information of contagious communities enduring from variola in the twelvemonth 1507. Same studies came in about a disease that causes ulcers on the organic structure in Haiti in 1517. This in bend supports the hypothesis of a black adult male being a bearer of the variola virus. Ecuador and Peru suffered the same destiny five old ages subsequently as variola annihilated the Incas.

The universe is a planetary small town now. In the words of Alfred Crosby, “ Everybody ‘s diseases will be everybody else ‘s diseases. ”

( Ruvalcaba n.d. )


The Great Aztec Empire was brought down to its articulatio genuss by the epidemic of variola. Haiti, Peru, Ecuador, Caribbean Islands, Antilles Islands and even South America could non contend against this force of nature. The Incan civilisation neared its terminal because of the fierceness of the onslaught of variola.


Where does Africa suit in the clip of the Columbian Exchange? The Spanish governments at that clip were non concerned with the industry of sugar at all. All they wanted was the terminal merchandise. They could non trouble oneself with the difficult and clip devouring undertaking of turning the sugar canes and doing the sweetening. The lone solution that they could believe of was the usage of locals to make their work utilizing force. The Indians were falling quarry to the disease at that clip so the lone pick left for the difficult labour was the Africans. During the center of the sixteenth century, Spanish Caribbean was wholly in clasp of the sugar industry that had merely black slave labourers as their work force. This was the beginning of the long and palling journey of the black race towards bondage. It was besides the beginning of the relationship between African bondage and sugar production that was bound to go on for another twosome of centuries.


When the seventeenth century was approaching its terminal, the British were besides interest holders in the Caribbean doing slavery an built-in constituent of their comparatively new settled settlements. Their industry spread every bit far as the Leeward Islands where it brought about an economic, societal and political roar that was so rapid and sweeping that historians name it “ The Sugar Revolution ” .

The full sugar coevals procedure required a big work force. In order to run into the necessary demand for sugar, 1000s of slaves were imported from Africa by Antiguan plantation owners. A survey indicated that 2308 Whites and 2172 inkinesss were present on the island in 1678. The wheel of clip kept on singing. During the mid eighteenth century, the figure of inkinesss outnumbered the Whites by 10 to 1.

A slave lived the life of a Canis familiaris in those difficult times. Sometimes the anguish surpassed a individual ‘s capableness to digest. Mary Prince was a slave who said that her proprietor used to deprive her bare, hang her upside down and crush her with a cilium.

During the terminal of the nineteenth century the construct of bondage began to deteriorate go forthing the roots of the cause to be exterminated one time and for all. This did non go on overnight and took rather a figure of decennaries to go on.

( Miller n.d. )