AP World History : Environmental Interactions 600 CE to 1450

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for AP World History

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Example Questions

Example Question #1 : Environmental Interactions 600 Ce To 1450

Which of the following is not one of the main factors that helped encourage the spread of the Black Death across Europe?

Possible Answers:

Frequent crop failures

Religious injunctions against seeking medical treatment

Widespread famine and/or malnutrition

Chronic over-population

Correct answer:

Religious injunctions against seeking medical treatment

Explanation:

The Black Death (aka the bubonic plague) first entered Europe in 1347 and was widespread across the continent by 1350. The disease was carried by infected fleas on the backs of rats onto various ships in Asia, which in turn entered European ports and then spread from person to person along nearly every one of Europe’s major trade routes. The greater the volume of human contact during any sort of connected economic transactions, the greater the transmission and the faster the spread of the disease. The spread of the Black Death was helped along by several other internal factors within the continent as well – frequent crop failures had been devastating the region for a few years. These failures, in turn, caused widespread malnutrition, hunger, and famine among much of Europe’s population, especially in the cities – which were also hotspots of trade, further compounding the dire situation. Prior to the plague’s arrival, Europe had also been struggling with a chronic over-population dilemma, which put further strains upon the already diminished food supply and the overall state of ill-health. Taken together, these factors coalesced to create the perfect conditions for the horrifically rapid spread of the Black Death throughout Europe.

Example Question #2 : Environmental Interactions 600 Ce To 1450

Most historians believe that the Bubonic plague originated in __________ and then spread eventually to Europe.

Possible Answers:

China

India

Russia

North Africa

South Africa

Correct answer:

China

Explanation:

In the 1330s an outbreak of Bubonic plague began in China. By the mid-fourteenth century it had spread throughout Eurasia, leading to widespread sickness and death. The Black Death, as it came to be called in Europe, led to the death of perhaps as many as one hundred million people and caused the population of Europe to decline by one-third.

Example Question #14 : Environmental Interactions

Which of these statements best reflects the differences between indigenous societies in South America and indigenous societies in North America before the arrival of the Europeans?

Possible Answers:

Native societies in North America were much more hierarchical, whereas native societies in South America were very meritocratic and relatively liberated

Native societies in South America were defined by agriculture-based extensive empires, whereas native societies in North America were much smaller and partially relied on hunter-gathering

Native societies in South America were monotheistic and subsequently more receptive to Christianity than the polytheistic, animist societies of North America

Native societies in North America were monotheistic and subsequently more receptive to Christianity than the polytheistic, animist societies of South America

Native societies in North America were defined by agriculture-based extensive empires, whereas native societies in South America were much smaller and partially relied on hunter-gathering

Correct answer:

Native societies in South America were defined by agriculture-based extensive empires, whereas native societies in North America were much smaller and partially relied on hunter-gathering

Explanation:

When the Europeans arrived in the Americas in the late fifteenth century the differences between civilization in South America and North America could be summarized as follows - South America contained more multinational empires and tended to be based on extensive agricultural systems and permanent settlements; whereas North America contained much smaller and more homogeneous communities who were more likely to live a nomadic, hunter-gatherer type lifestyle. Of course this distinction is not uniform and has many notable exceptions.

Example Question #3 : Environmental Interactions 600 Ce To 1450

Throughout human history epidemics have __________.

Possible Answers:

all of these answers are correct

limited the exchange of ideas

spurred socioeconomic change

led to a decline in trade

destabilized autocratic regimes

Correct answer:

all of these answers are correct

Explanation:

To begin with an "epidemic" is a widespread infectious disease. Throughout human history epidemics have had a diverse impact on human society. They have destabilized governments, encourage revolutions, spurred socioeconomic change, limited and encouraged the exchange of ideas, led to a decline in trade, and had many other unexpected consequences.

Example Question #4 : Environmental Interactions 600 Ce To 1450

Which of these statements about the Mississippian civilization is inaccurate?

Possible Answers:

All of these statements are inaccurate.

They built earthen mounds for religious and ceremonial purposes.

Their largest city was Cahokia.

None of these statements are inaccurate.

They declined as a result of the devastating impact of diseases introduced by European settlers.

Correct answer:

They declined as a result of the devastating impact of diseases introduced by European settlers.

Explanation:

The Mississippian civilization arose in pre-Columbian America around 700 CE. The people of the Mississippian civilization built earthen mounds for religious and ceremonial purposes. Their largest city was called Cahokia. They declined, however, more than two centuries before the arrival of Europeans in the Americas.

Example Question #5 : Environmental Interactions 600 Ce To 1450

Why did the Mississippian civilization decline?

Possible Answers:

as a result of the impact of diseases introduced by European settlers

as a result of the genocidal actions of the nascent American government

as a result of massacres committed by European settlers

none of these answers; no-one is sure exactly why the Mississippian civilization declined

as a result of a prolonged famine and drought in the thirteenth century

Correct answer:

none of these answers; no-one is sure exactly why the Mississippian civilization declined

Explanation:

Although it is true that the Mississippian civilization declined in the thirteenth century, we cannot say for sure that it was a result of prolonged famine and drought. No-one knows exactly why the Mississippian civilization declined, but it is certain that it did so long before the arrival of Europeans in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries.

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