15th Century Timeline

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Ptolemy introduces Geography. He assigned coordinates to all the places and geographic features he knew, in a grid that spanned the globe. Latitude was measured from the equator. (1406)

John Wycliffe was an English Scholastic philosopher, and translator. His English version of the bible was published in 1408. The Bible he created, the first literal translation of the Latin Vulgate Bible into English, was more a work of his followers than him but tradition still tends to attribute it to Wycliffe. (1408)

Henry IV was king of England from 1399 to 1413. King Henry IV married Joanna of Navarre during his reign in 1403. King Henry IV suffered from an unnamed illness which caused him to die in 1413. Prince Hal succeeded his father to the throne of England as King Henry V. (1399-1413)

During the Great Schism, there are two, and even three, rival claimant to the papacy. The election of Clement VII began the Great Schism. The great schism had a negative impact on the religious life of Catholic Europe. The election of Martin V ended the great schism. (1378-1417)

The election of Pope Martin V ends the great schism. The pope became actively involved in the political and cultural life of renaissance Italy and did little to deal with the much-needed reform of the Roman Catholic Church. This failure contributed the Protestant Reformation of the sixteenth century. (1417)

Portugal’s Prince Henry the navigator established a school of seamanship and navigation in 1419. He was a son of Portugal’s King John I. During his reign the Portuguese explored the Madeira Islands and discovered the Cape Verde islands. (1419)

Charles VI ruled France for forty two years. In 1388, Charles declared himself sole ruler. Four years later, he experienced his first bought of insanity. He was the ruler of France during the Hundred Years War. In 1420, Charles signed the Treaty of Troyes which recognized Henry V of England as his successor. (1380-1422)

Donatello sculpted the David. It is recorded as the centerpiece of the first courtyard in the Palazzo Medici during the wedding festivities of Lorenzo de' Medici and Clarice Orsini in 1469. It is probably the most famous example of fifteenth-century sculpture. (1430-1432)

Cosimo de’ Medici becomes the ruler of Florence. He was the first of the Medici political dynasty. Cosimo was effectively in control of the city but he ruled by pretending not to rule at all. He didn't hold any public office but rather filled the city council with loyal followers. (1434)

Portuguese transport around two hundred slaves from Africa to Portugal. Prince Henry's chamberlain led up the exploration. This was the beginning of what would become the African Slave Trade. These voyages reflected the change in policy from simply expanding overseas trade to finding a specific sea route to India. (1441)

The Portuguese establish a slave-trading station in West Africa. The Europeans exchanged rum, cloth, guns, and other trade goods for their human cargo. The slaves were transported across the Atlantic Ocean primarily to Brazil, the West Indies and the English colonies in North America. (1442)

Hapsburg got elected into Holy Roman Empire. The Holy Roman Empire grew to be a large political entity but faced serious problems that brought it close to the point of disintegration. Though the Habsburg Empire and the Holy Roman Empire were two distinct political entities, the Habsburg dynasty continued to assume the title of Emperor. (1452)

The Hundred Years War ends. In July 1453 a French army defeated Talbot at Castillon and Talbot himself. When it was clear that no more help would come from England, Bordeaux surrendered. This war marked the end of English attempts to control continental territory and the beginning of its emphasis upon maritime supremacy. (1453)

The War of the Roses was an international argument, between the House of York and the Lancastrians, for the throne of England. The Battle of Stoke Field is...
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