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European Global Exploration Portugese and Spanish

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The purpose of this paper is to Describe how European global exploration, particularly the Portuguese and Spanish, from 1500-1700, changed the character of both old and new societies.
In the fifteenth century, European global expansionism was the driving force that kept the English motivated to expand. Europeans set out on a cycle of overseas voyages that would lead to the organization of European trading posts and colonies in both the Americas and the East. Colonialism is defined as a structure in a colony with a specific linkage; meaning economic, political, cultural, and social ideologies. The colonies linked England to the United States. England, being the mother country, also had a very important role play. The mother country was responsible for providing money for supplies for voyages such as ships, food, soldiers, and weapons etc. Also, England was responsible for the processing and manufacturing of raw materials. Settlers of the colonies needed markets to sell their goods and labor. They also needed a source of labor for the production of raw materials. This new labor force was made up of Native Americans, indentured servants
(white slaves who served terms of up to seven years as slaves), and Africans.
Columbus and his crew stated that when they arrived in the Americas they found
Africans already there.
In 1502, the Spanish were the first Europeans to enslave Africans in the Americas. Yet the local population died from European diseases like smallpox and from overwork.
Thus in 1502, ten years after Columbus' landing, the Spanish brought the first African slaves to Cuba from West Africa to replace Indian slaves who were dying out. This began the trans-Atlantic slave deal between West Africa and the Americas and the integration of Native Americans and Africans. The Spanish conquerors of the

Americas—known as Conquistadors were individuals whose guns and determination

brought them incredible success. The forces of Hernán Cortés took only three years to

over throw the mighty The Spanish and Portuguese conquests of Central and South

America were rapid and devastated the Aztec and Inca civilizations. Wanting to share

in the wealth, the Dutch, English, and French moved to set up colonies in North


Slavery, which had been practiced in Africa since ancient times, saw a dramatic rise in the sixteenth century. Many of the enslaved Africans were sent to Brazil and the
Caribbean to work on sugarcane plantations. The voyage across the Atlantic Ocean became known as the Middle Passage. Some ten million Africans were shipped on the Middle Passage, many of them dying en route or dying from disease in the
Americas. As the demand for enslaved people grew, slave traders in Africa moved farther inland to find their victims. In addition to the tragic effects on individuals, the slave trade completely devastated some African states, such as Benin. The Spanish

were supposed to protect Native Americans, but the settlers were far from Spain and

largely ignored their rulers. Native Americans were put to work on sugar plantations

and in gold and silver mines. Few Spanish settlers worried about protecting them.

Forced labor, starvation, and especially disease took a fearful toll on Native American

lives. With little natural resistance to European diseases, the native peoples were

ravaged by smallpox, measles, and typhus, and many of them died. Hispaniola, for

example, had a population of 250,000 when Columbus arrived. By 1538, only 500

Native Americans had survived. In Mexico, the population dropped from 25 million in

1519 to1 million in 1630.
Spain established an enormous colonial empire in Central America, most of
South America, and parts of North America. Portugal colonized Brazil. Colonial Latin
America was divided into social classes, with peninsulares at the top, followed by creoles, mestizos, and mulattoes. Latin America provided vast wealth for Spain and
Gold, silver and spices were sent to Europe. Landowners created immense plantations farmed by Native Americans and enslaved Africans. Spain's king appointed viceroys to rule his Latin American empire. Catholic missionaries—
Dominicans, Franciscans, and Jesuits—set up profitable missions as well as cathedrals, hospitals, and schools throughout the Spanish Empire. In the early years of

the conquest, Catholic missionaries converted and baptized hundreds of thousands of

native peoples. With the arrival of the missionaries came parishes, schools, and

hospitals; all the trappings of a European society. Native American social and political

structures were torn apart and replaced by European systems of religion, language,

culture, and government.
The English colonization of North America fit into the global integrated world capitalist system between 1600 and 1763. According to Laura LaHaye Mercantilism is the economic nationalism for the purpose of building a wealthy and powerful state. Adam Smith coined the term “mercantile system” to describe the system of political economy that sought to enrich the country by restraining imports and encouraging exports. The goal of these policies was to supposedly to achieve a “favorable” balance of trade that would bring gold and silver into the country and also to maintain domestic employment. The mercantile system served the interests of merchants and producers such as the British East India
Company, whose activities were protected or encouraged by the state. Other important factors were the establishment of colonies outside Europe which made the growth of
European commerce and industry relative to agriculture.

In Conclusion, Both the British and the Spanish directed their colonization efforts in

North America in distinctly different ways. Though the Spanish did colonize earlier

than the English, forming St. Augustine in Florida, their methods to maintain their

colony were different than the English. Though both the Spanish and British had

major colonizing efforts in North America prior to 1763 and they both had similar

pursuits in that they had varying economic goals, religious objectives, and some form

of governing by both host countries. The British colonization efforts in North America

prior to 1763 were economically, demographically, and politically different than those of

the Spanish and these differences led them to greater success. Developing and

maintaining these colonies allowed the English to pressure the Spanish out of North

America and eventually become the most dominate of all colonizing forces.

Additionally, the English dominance gave the colonies an opportunity to succeed from

their colonial rule and be well enough situated to become an independent country and

develop into the Americas it is today.

Hill, M. (2013, 07). The Age of Exploration. Chapter 13 : The Age of Exploration. Retrieved 07, 2013, from

Boyer, Paul et al. “The Enduring Vision.” Cengage Learning. 6e. Houghton Mifflin Company.
5 Jul. 2011
Nosotro, Rit. “The Long-Term Effects of Colonization in the Americas.” HyperHi 5 Jul. 2011

Unknown. “The Spanish Colonization of America.” 5 Jul. 2011…...

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