Some Specific Patterns From the Period Between 1450 and 1750 That Speak to Both Change and Continuity in World History?
In contrast to the sea-based empires developing in Europe, land-based empires remained the dominant political form in other parts of the eastern hemisphere. The era between 1450 and 1750 saw the appearance of several land-based empires who built their power on the use of gunpowder: the Ottomans and the Safavids in Southwest Asia, the Mughals in India, the Ming and Qing in China, and the new Russian Empire. All had huge land armies armed with guns. These empires developed relatively independently from western influence, and to some extent they counterbalanced the growth of European power and colonization.
Just as wealth in the Italian city-states prompted patronage of the arts, so it did in the Islamic Empires as well. The emperors competed to attract the best scholars, literary writers, artists, and architects to their courts. The Ottoman sultans built beautiful palaces and mosques, with the most famous religious complex built by Suleyman the Magnificent called Suleymaniye, a blend of Islamic and Byzantine architectural features. The Safavid capital, Isfahan, was considered to be one of the most architectural beautiful in all the world, with its monumental entryways, large courtyards, and intricate decoration. Perhaps the most famous monument in Islamic lands was the Taj Mahal, built by Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan, who dedicated the white marble mosque and tomb to the memory of his wife. He planned to build a similar mausoleum out of black marble for himself, but he was deposed by his son and spent the rest of his life in prison, where he supposedly could see his wife's tomb through a small window with the help of a mirror. By 1750 the world was a much different one than had existed in 1450. This era saw the rise of Europe, though scholars debate just how much power Europeans actually had in the world economy. They dominated the New World, which was connected by regular, sustained contact to the eastern hemisphere during this time. They also controlled much of the African slave trade, but it is important to note that no European had ventured far into the interior of the continent by 1750. They were still dependent on African kingdoms to bring the slaves to the trading posts, and Europeans had not set up significant colonies in Africa, except at the very southern tip, Capetown near the Cape of Good Hope. This situation would change dramatically during the following era. Great empires continued to form in East Asia, the Middle East, and India, as the technological invention of gunpowder allowed them to conquer the nomadic groups that had challenged their authority for centuries. However, land-based empires clearly lost power in proportion to sea-faring powers, as world trade routes connected the western hemisphere to the east. These increased contacts were to have important consequences for people all over the world in the period from 1750-1914.
All in all, in the post-classical period (600-1450 C.E.) you studied the rise of new civilizations in both hemispheres, the spread of major religions that created cultural areas for analysis, and the expansion of long-distance trade. During the time period between 1450 and 1750 C.E., the Eastern and Western hemispheres were linked and for the first time resulting truly worldwide trade and cultural, political and social changes that can be seen in the modern world.