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Columbian Exchange Essay

Essay by   •  September 6, 2012  •  Essay  •  661 Words (3 Pages)  •  1,014 Views

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Christopher Columbus, the champion of Spain and the discoverer of the new world, can be blamed for the horrid tragedies that happened to the Americas, as well as new and good things that also happened. Of course, a good point of Christopher Columbus coming to the Americas was the colonization of the area, as well as the discoverer of dozens and dozens of species of animals, plants, and other treasures. Out of two bad points, the worst would be the great mass of the native population dying from diseases brought from Europe. The second would be the mass depletion of the natural American world.

Partially, Columbus did a high amount of good on the benefit of Europe and the Americas. The Europeans brought crops and animals such as coffee, cattle, swine, and tea west to the Americas, while the Europeans brought corn, potatoes, and chocolate home with him. The introduction of products to both regions highly changed the lifestyle of the two. New foods were added to the cooking and eating style, and new treasures were discovered. Such as gold, this was highly wanted by the Europeans. Along with products, Columbus spread Christianity and colonized. While the methods of spreading religion and colonization are considered cruel, he did get him point across. The spread of the new religion allowed for diversity among natives and new ideas for them to learn from. Colonization of the Americas allowed for new people to move in and spread their culture to the natives.

At the times of Columbus' journey to the Americas (which he thought to be Asia), diseases such as smallpox were normal and immune in European countries. Unfortunately, in the Americas, this was a new sickness and the humans that lived on this continent were not immune. In effect of that, a large population of the continent died from foreign diseases. For example, at the prime of the Aztec Empire in Mexico, there were close to twenty five million inhabitance. By the time the epidemic of smallpox had run its course of the Aztecs, there were a little more than one million people left in existence in the empire. This extremely loss of local inhabitance hurt the continent immensely. It depleted the Americas of its cultural history, causing there to be very little records of the Aztecs, Incas, Maya, and several others. The European settlers had no idea how the citizens of Central America were dying, so they gave it no through. This was rather selfish of them.

Along with the death of a majority of the local inhabitance, the depletion of natural species and the earth took place. Even though the introduction of new species of crops, plants, and animals introduced diversity to South America, it also destroyed the natural world. There were already special ways that crops such as maize and beans were being grown, and new European crops were not meant to grow in the same way. "Some crops represented a fundamental change to the system of agricultural production" (Columbian

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