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   Fasttrack to America's Past
    Section 1: Discovery and Exploration
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Section 1: Discovery and Exploration          Practice Test 1

Write your answer choices on a piece of paper, then click on the "Answer Key" button at the end to check and grade your test.

1.  Most experts think that the Native Americans (Indians) first arrived in North America 10 to 40 thousand years ago by

A. rowing primitive boats across the Atlantic Ocean from Northern Europe.
B. sailing canoes across the Pacific Ocean from Hawaii or nearby islands.
C. traveling from northern Asia across to what is now Alaska.
D. sailing rafts from Western Africa to Central America.

2.  Which of these is the best explanation for the "rebirth" or Renaissance of European civilization around 1300 - 1400 A.D.?

A. the discovery of the New World and its wealth, especially gold, that came to Spain
B. Europe had become so isolated that it had to develop all its ideas on its own
C. the Protestant religious movement led by figures like Martin Luther
D. steadily growing trade and growing contact with other cultures such as the Arabs

3.  Which of the features below was NOT generally associated with the Renaissance?

A. the idea that the world can be understood, especially with science and mathematics
B. a new emphasis on the depiction of human life in art as something beautiful
C. wide acceptance of the idea that all men should be politically and socially equal
D. a "merchant" class that had been growing in importance since the late Middle Ages

4.  Why did Spain and Portugal take an early lead in the Age of Discovery?

A. They were both Catholic countries.
B. Italy already had control over overland trade with the Far East, so Spain and Portugal had to search for other ways to expand trade.
C. Both countries were familiar with legends of land in the western oceans.
D. They were the only countries that knew about the Spice Islands.

5.  On his first voyage of discovery, Christopher Columbus was trying to find

A. a sea route by which ships could sail to the lands of the Far East. 
B. a better trade route to Southern Africa, and around it, to India.
C. an island or series of islands to plant Spanish colonies.
D. a New World which old myths and stories spoke of somewhere west of Europe.

6.  When did Columbus make his first voyage to the New World?

A. 1420
B. 1492
C. 1522
D. 1607

7.  Which is NOT a true statement about the geographic and navigational knowledge of Columbus as he set out on his first voyage of discovery?

A. He thought the earth was smaller than it really is.
B. He thought the shape of the earth was a flat circle, like a pancake.
C. He knew the angle of the North Star was an indicator of one's position on the Earth in a North/South direction.
D. He was familiar with the eclipses of the moon, and believed they were evidence of the shape of the earth.

8.  Which explorer below sailed for England and helped establish an early English claim on lands in North America?

A. Hernando de Soto 
B. Ferdinand Magellan
C. Bartholomew Dias
D. John Cabot

9.  Where does the name "America" come from?

A. It is Latin for "New World."
B. It was taken by a map maker from the name of Amerigo Vespucci, an early explorer.
C. It was a "made up" word by an Italian geographer, and has no other origin.
D. It came from the Aztec word for "land of gold."

10.  How did the system of land ownership of Native Americans compare to that of Europeans?

A. Indians life was built around a system of individual ownership of land, much like that of Europeans. 
B. Indians generally did not own land individually, but as a tribe.

11.  Which Native American group lived in what is now the Southwestern United States?

A. Inca
B. Creek
C. Iroquois
D. Pueblo

12.  Which of these is NOT true of the Aztec Indians?

A. Their religion opposed all forms of bloodshed.
B. They lived in what is now Mexico City.
C. They were conquered by the Spaniard, Hernando Cortes.
D. They were among the most highly developed civilizations in the New World.

13.  Which of these is a true statement about smallpox?

A. It was a disease carried from Europe that wiped out millions of Native Americans.
B. It was a disease Europeans had never seen before.
C. It was a term for a type of Spanish mission building.
D. It is a term for a type of deadly arrow used by South American Indians.

14.  Which of these best describes the reason or reasons why the Spanish explored and conquered large areas of Central and South America?

A. They mainly wanted the land, because Spain did not have enough.
B. They wanted gold, they wanted to spread their religion, and they wanted the glory of conquest. 
C. The Spanish wanted to establish a new land with religious freedom.
D. The Spanish wanted to spread ideas of democracy to Native Americans.

15.  Which is an example of the Columbian Exchange?

A. the division of South America between Portugal and Spain
B. the spread of the corn plant from the New World back to Europe
C. the gift by the King of Spain of ships for Columbus' expedition
D. the claim by Columbus to a share of the wealth he discovered

16.  By considering the life of Bartolome de Las Casas, which issue below would he most likely want to get involved in if he were alive today?

A. How can we make better space ships for the exploration of Mars?
B. How can sugar cane be grown in old, exhausted farmland?
C. How can the abuse of native Indian populations in South America be stopped?
D. What is the best route for a new canal across Central America to the Pacific?

17.  What and where was “The Lost Colony”?

A. a sugar growing colony planted by Portugal on an island near Africa 
B. a settlement of English people who disappeared from an island in what is now North Carolina
C. a colony of French people in Canada that joined an Indian tribe
D. a group of Indians who settled in England

18.  The purpose of missions built in the New World by the Spanish was

A. to provide military protection for Spanish settlers.
B. to develop navigation and land charts in the New World.
C. to provide a place to store supplies for exploration.
D. to make Native Americans accept Christianity and European ways of life.

19.  Which of these best describes the houses of the Indians first encountered by the English explorers in the coastal areas near the Chesapeake Bay?

A. They were built of stone.
B. They were built with mud bricks dried in the sun.
C. They were wood poles covered with bark or other natural materials.
D. They were built of heavy wood timbers with walls of mud and sticks.

20.  Which of these was NOT a result of the meeting of the Old World and the New World in the early 1500s?

A. Many Native Americans died of European diseases and exploitation.
B. Important new plant foods like corn and the potato entered the European diet.
C. European religious beliefs changed dramatically.
D. New sources of wealth and trade were opened to European nations.

        Use the map below to answer questions 21 to 30.

21.  Which letter shows the location of China, a source of silk and other valuable products traded to Europeans during and after the Middle Ages?

22.  Which letter shows the location of the Spice Islands, known today as the Molucca Islands?

23.  Which letter shows the location of India, which was reached by the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama?

24.  Which letter shows the location of Spain, the country that sponsored Columbus and Magellan on their famous voyages of discovery?

25.  Which letter shows the area where Columbus landed on his first voyage to the New World?

26.  Which letter shows where the Aztec Empire was located?

27.  Which letter shows where the Inca civilization was located?

28.  Which letter shows the area that French explorer Jacques Cartier searched unsuccessfully for a "Northwest Passage" in 1534?

29.  Which letter shows the location of England?

30.  Which letter shows where the English put the settlement known as "The Lost Colony"?

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Answer Key

Copyright 2001, 2016 by David Burns