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Setting the Tone: The Portuguese
Setting the tone: The portuguese

Portugal spearheaded the exploration ventures into the Atlantic, with Lisbon, the entrepot where the maritime economies of the Mediterranean and the Atlantic met, becoming the jumping-off point. When John I, the Grand Master of the Knights of Aviz, became the Portuguese king in 1384, he chose exploration and expansion in search of wealth, not unexpected for a resource-starved country like Portugal. Combined with this was a bunch of diverse motives: crusading zeal against the Muslims, the desire for Guinea gold, the quest for the mythical Prester John's kingdom and the search for oriental spices. The blessings from the Pope boosted the morale of the Crown: the Bulls1 issued by him, often termed as the charter of ...

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