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Spanish Imperialism and Colonialism

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Braden Richardson

on 25 August 2011

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Transcript of Spanish Imperialism and Colonialism

A brief overview of spanish colonialism and imperialism
1500-1900 Imperial Spain The unification of the crowns of Aragon and Castile laid the basis for modern Spain and the Spanish Empire. Spain was Europe's leading power throughout the 16th century and most of the 17th century, a position reinforced by trade and wealth from colonial possessions. It reached its apogee during the reigns of the first two Spanish Habsburgs – Charles I (1516–1556) and Philip II (1556–1598). This period saw the Italian Wars, the revolt of the comuneros, the Dutch revolt, the Morisco revolt, clashes with the Ottomans, the Anglo-Spanish war and wars with France. Philip II Charles I The Spanish Empire expanded to include great parts of the Americas, islands in the Asia-Pacific area, areas of Italy, cities in Northern Africa, as well as parts of what are now France, Germany, Belgium, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands. It was the first empire of which it was said that the sun never set. This was an age of discovery, with daring explorations by sea and by land, the opening-up of new trade routes across oceans, conquests and the beginnings of European colonialism. Along with the arrival of precious metals, spices, luxuries, and new agricultural plants, Spanish explorers brought back knowledge from the New World, and played a leading part in transforming the European understanding of the globe. Conquistadors Conquistador refers to the Spanish and Portuguese soldiers, explorers, and adventurers who brought much of the Americas under the control of Spain and Portugal in the 15th to 16th centuries, following Europe's discovery of the New World by Christopher Columbus in 1492. The two perhaps most famous conquistadors were Hernán Cortés who conquered the Aztec Empire and Francisco Pizarro who led the conquest of the Incan Empire. Conquistadors in the Americas resembled a volunteer militia more than than a regular organized military in that they had to supply their own materials, weapons and horses. Some were supported by governments, such as Hernán Cortés, who was funded by Spain. The conquerors were professional armies, using modern tactics, firearms, combat dogs, and cavalry tactics against unprepared groups. The Companies would often specialize in forms of combat that required longer periods of training that was not available in the form of a mobilized militia. Militarily, conquistadors had various advantages over the native peoples, most notably firearms and steel. While the indigenous peoples had the advantage of established settlements, determination to remain independent and large numerical superiority, which in many cases was a decisive factor in the defeat of the conquistadors,[citation needed] European diseases combined with advanced military technology and divide and conquer tactics ultimately overcame the native populations. Hernán Cortés Hernán Cortés (1485 – December 2, 1547) was a Spanish Conquistador who led an expedition that caused the fall of the Aztec Empire and brought large portions of mainland Mexico under the rule of the King of Castile in the early 16th century. Cortés was part of the generation of Spanish colonizers that began the first phase of the Spanish colonization of the Americas. In 1528, Cortés returned to Spain to appeal to the justice of his master, Charles V. He was received by Charles with every distinction, and decorated with the order of Santiago. In return for his efforts in expanding the still young Spanish Empire, Cortés was rewarded in 1529 by being named the "Marqués del Valle de Oaxaca" (Marquis of the Oaxaca Valley), a noble title and senorial estate which was passed down to his descendants until 1811. Cortes Spanish Colonisation of the Americas The Spanish Colonization of America was the exploration, conquest, settlement and political rule over much of the western hemisphere by the Spanish Empire. It was initiated by the Spanish conquistadores and developed by the Monarchy of Spain through its administrators and missionaries. The motivations for colonial expansion were trade and the spread of the Christian faith through indigenous conversions. It lasted for over four hundred years, from 1492 to 1898. This shows the extent of spain's colonisation of America Another explorer that did a lot for spain was Christopher Columbus Christopher Columbus (c. 31 October 1451 – 20 May 1506) was an explorer, colonizer, and navigator, born in the Republic of Genoa, in northwestern Italy. Under the auspices of the Catholic Monarchs of Spain, he completed four voyages across the Atlantic Ocean that led to general European awareness of the American continents in the Western Hemisphere. Those voyages, and his efforts to establish permanent settlements in the island of Hispaniola, initiated the process of Spanish colonization, which foreshadowed the general European colonization of the "New World". Columbus Columbus' voyages led to the first lasting European contact with America and inaugurated a period of European exploration and colonization of foreign lands that lasted for several centuries and had, therefore, an enormous impact in the historical development of the modern Western world. Columbus himself saw his accomplishments primarily in the light of the spreading of the Christian religion. In the latter half of the 17th century, Spain went into a gradual relative decline, during which it surrendered a number of small territories to France. However it maintained and enlarged its vast overseas empire, which remained intact until the beginning of the 19th century. That's all I have... People back then were really ugly.
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