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Was John Cabot looking for the Northwest Passage?

Question:

Was John Cabot looking for the Northwest Passage?

John Cabot:

John Cabot was a mariner who sailed for the English King, Henry VII during the last decade of the fifteenth century. Henry, like other European monarchs, wished to cash-in on the wealth made possible by trade with the Far East and in the new lands discovered by Columbus and other explorers. In many ways, John Cabot's expedition to the New World was just part of a large competition between European monarchs for wealth and supremacy.

Answer and Explanation:

John Cabot was looking for a western passage to the wealthy trading centers of East Asia. Cabot was well-aware of the travels of Marco Polo, Christopher Columbus, and Portuguese mariners during the previous decades. Cabot was also well-aware of the wealth of European trade with Asia. He spent considerable time as a trader in the Eastern Mediterranean. He engaged in the spice trade in the Levant. He also had limited involvement in the slave trade. Finally, he claimed to have traveled to Mecca in the Arabian Peninsula. Because of his experiences and knowledge, Cabot was excited to discover a western passage to Asia.


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John Cabot, Explorer: Voyage, Facts & Accomplishments

from High School US History: Homework Help Resource

Chapter 2 / Lesson 12
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