1415 Europeans Began A Long Process Of Essay


¶ … 1415 Europeans began a long process of expansion through imperial conquest and colonization. This early modern form of imperialism continued up to the late eighteenth or early nineteenth century. Explain how and why the various European powers expanded beyond their original borders and in many instances beyond the continent. Be sure to distinguish between at least three of the principal European imperial powers, among which were the Portuguese, Spanish, British, French, Dutch, and Russians. There were many factors that caused European powers to expand beyond their original borders and, in many instances, beyond the continent.

One of these was simply colonization where one country battled another and claimed its territory as its own. Another factor was trade where the trade dealings of specific countries brought them into contact with another and, thereby imported their influence into foreign soil. The slave trade too was a contributory factor where people from one powerful country captured slaves from an insignificant part of the globe (such as from Africa or captured at sea) and sold them in another.

The Safavid rulers (of the Portuguese empire), and the same was replicated in the case of the Spaniards, were not only excellent merchants who had control of the silk trade and thereby augmented their global power but also introduced the world to literature, painting, music, and architecture. There were certain nations (such as the British in the 18th to 19th century who became rulers of half of the world) who controlled the world largely through their dominion over and closeness to the ocean. They controlled...


Hence, Britain not only successfully embattled France on many an instance but also created the East Indies route and colonized many empires becoming the greatest nation in the Victorian age (Jiu-Hwa Upshur, 2012).
Commercialism resulted in territorial expansion in that, as in the case of Portuguese domination of Southeast Asia, Portuguese commanders established outposts on various parts of the coast of SE Asia, fought local rulers and formed alliances with others in order to control the lucrative trade of exotic and precious goods that was obtainable in that region. Another instance of commercialism that resulted in expansion is that of the Dutch attempt to monopolize the spice trade. They waged a war of attrition against the Portuguese in 1640 which resulted in the fall of the Portuguese stronghold of Malacca. The Dutch, too, in 1623 had ended British trade in the East Indies by massacring the entire staff of an English trading post, and had expelled the Portuguese from Ceylon in 1658, thereby gaining control of the entire lucrative spice trade from Asia to Europe that they would maintain for the next one and half centuries (Jiu-Hwa Upshur, 2012).

In a similar way, knowledge too served to expand the nation beyond its original domain. Instances of such were the culture of the French (particularly under Louis XIV) or the humanity and renaissance of the Italians during the Renaissance. Italy attracted people of other countries to its borders in order to learn of its…

Sources Used in Documents:


Jiu-Hwa Upshur (2012) World History Wadsworth; comprehensive, compact 5th edition)

John M. Cohen (1969) The Four Voyages, Penguin: UK

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