Week 36 – the Middle Ages, Native Americans

This is the last post from Western Civ I.

Why were Native Americans so easy to conquer?

First of all, they were overwhelmed by the armies that came; they’ve never seen people on horses and they’ve never seen firearms. Spaniards took advantage of that. Other major factor was that they didn’t think they were independent. Their civilization were still based on a pyramidal diversion. There was the ruler and then there were the other people. Hence when their emperor was captured, they gave up.

What is the truth of the matter regarding the claim that people in the Middle Ages thought the earth was flat?

Nobody actually thought that it was flat. Even Aristotle knew it was a sphere. This myth evolved in the 19th century. It was based on two people; Lactantius and Cosmas Indicopleustes. Lactantius said the Earth was flat only because he was strongly against pagans and when they did the Earth is a sphere, he said it was flat. Cosmas Indicopleustes didn’t even think that, he just made a philosophical project, where the Earth was flat and heaven was above it.

People started believing this myth was true basically because they were too lazy to search up the real facts.

So no, the truth isn’t that people didn’t support Columbus because they thought he was going to fall of the Earth’s edge. The simple answer was that Spain was at war and didn’t have money for his travels and most people also thought he won’t make it that far (to Asia).

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