A World Divided 1494 – The Portuguese and the Spanish race to reach the Spice Islands

In the 15th century the aromatic spices of cloves and nutmeg, grown only in the remote Spice Islands of present day Indonesia were said to be worth their weight in gold and were some of the most valuable of traded commodities.

After the discovery of the America’s, the 1494 of Treaty of Tordesillas between Spain and Portugal divided the world in half, along a line of demarcation in the Atlantic Ocean halfway between the Portuguese claimed island of Azores and the island of Hispaniola discovered by Columbus. The Treaty then allowed Spain to claim any territory discovered to the west of this line and Portugal any territory discovered to the east.

The two Iberian powers were now in a race to reach the source of these valuable spices and claim it for themselves, by sailing in opposite directions around the world and across the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean respectively. Although neither of them could accurately measure longitude and know in whose supposed half of the world the Spice Islands were actually located. The results changed the map of the world and even the first map of Australia.

Follow this link to view the 30 minute presentation on ‘A World Divided ‘made by Ian Burnet at the ANZ Map Conference in October 2020 at the National Library of Australia.

https://ianburnetbooks.com

About ianburnet

Author of the book, Spice Islands. Which tells the History, Romance and Adventure of the spice trade from the Moluccas in Eastern Indonesia over a period of 2000 years. Author of the book, East Indies.Which tells the history of the struggle between the Portuguese Crown, the Dutch East India Company and the English East India Company for supremacy in the Eastern Seas. Author of the book 'Archipelago - A Journey Across Indonesia'.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to A World Divided 1494 – The Portuguese and the Spanish race to reach the Spice Islands

  1. Denis O'Hara says:

    Amazing collection and sequencing of map mages. Thanks Ian.

  2. Denis O'Hara says:

    should read…images.

  3. ianburnet says:

    Thanks Denis. As you can expect for a ANZ Maps Conference it is all about the historic maps

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s