hello I was looking at a population chart recently and realized that there are way more people in Eurasia than in the Americas. Was it always like this? If the population imbalance is due to exposure to old world disease surely after 500 years it would have recovered by now right?

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hello I was looking at a population chart recently and realized that there are way more people in Eurasia than in the Americas. Was it always like this? If the population imbalance is due to exposure to old world disease surely after 500 years it would have recovered by now right?

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3 Answers

Anonymous 0 Comments

Well the americas were mostly colonized.

While we have a pretty good idea the european landmass and asian landmass was pretty much populated by early humans over land bridges that came from Africa… africa was most likely the cradle of humanity, so everything spread away from that point, the european landmass compared to the African landmass is a much easier environment to thrive and live. So these populations grew…sure there was other human species too such as homo erectus, neanderthals and whatnot. But pretty much all thrived on the Eurasian landmass and mixed together genetically too.

While america.. was kinda semi cut off at the time of those events, any early humans that made it there got there over probably a southern route over what is now Chile, the odd raft or log and drifting over, or a northern asian route which is roughly the direction of alaska… so the population is lower by default sinply in lieu of envoiremental factors….while not exactly touched by these sweeping diseases and eventually it was mass colonised.

So purely just by how america as a landmass works these numbers just do not compare.

While europe had empires and cities, americas had mostly tribes that were isolated / smaller interconnected communities.

Anonymous 0 Comments

It’s generally thought that Europe and Asian were more technologically developed because they had horses and because they had a long stretch of land in an east to west direction so that trade and migrations could occur without having to move across widely different climates. A trip from France to eastern China is much easier than a trip from Canada to southern Argentina. Thus in Eurasia much technology could be passed around and a lot of trade could occur. With advances in technology come the ability to feed more people. Horse of course helped with that effort. So, you’ll notice Asia in particular is heavily populated. They had rice. Rice can feed a lot of people on a small amount of land.

So at the time of Columbus, Eurasia was already pretty heavily populated compared to the Americas. Much of the original population of the Americas was wiped out as you know, but immigrants replaced the natives. However, despite the huge amount of immigration and the large families they had, it wasn’t enough to catch up with Europe’s population density, and they didn’t farm much rice so they got nowhere near Asia’s population density.

Anonymous 0 Comments

In addition to the other points mentioned here’s a few more things to consider:

The Indian subcontinent and China are both heavily populated which will skew Eurasian’s numbers.

Eurasia (54.8 km^2 ) is larger than the Americas. (42.55 km^2 ). On top of that the actual livable area is likely different.

Eurasia had massive empires with heavy usage of metal implements which differed significantly from the indigenous peoples of the Americas and likely affected population growth.