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Old 07-19-2009, 09:03 AM
gonorth gonorth is offline
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At its greatest extent in the Americas, Spanish territory stretched from Alaska through the western United States, Mexico, and Central America to southern Chile and Patagonia, and from the state of Georgia south to the Caribbean islands, Venezuela, Colombia, and Argentina. In Africa, at various times Spain occupied territories in the Western Sahara (present-day Morocco), and along the coast of what is now Equatorial Guinea, including the offshore island of Fernando Póo (now Bioko). In Asia, Spain ruled the Philippine Islands, which the Spanish named after King Philip II in 1542 . In Oceania, Spain held the Mariana Islands and later the Caroline Islands. Gibraltar, a rocky promontory connected to the Spanish mainland by a sandy isthmus, is a British dependency still claimed by Spain.Spain's overseas empire dates from the joint rule of Isabella of Castile and Ferdinand of Aragón, whose marriage in 1469 began the process of uniting their separate Iberian kingdoms into one Spanish nation. It was during their reign as Isabella I and Ferdinand V that the newly united country began to build an empire. Spanish expansion overseas began for a number of reasons. The monarchs wanted to secure neighboring areas for defense against Muslim raids originating from North Africa, to protect Castile's shipping activities and trade in the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, and to use the neighboring areas as ports for export of gold and enslaved Africans. They also supported exploration of distant areas primarily to spread Christianity and to increase Spain’s potential for trade with the Far East, thereby gaining wealth and international prestige.The concern to increase Spanish trade centered on the desire to overcome the advantage Portuguese explorers and traders had gained by establishing similar bases on the African continent and islands off of Africa in the Atlantic Ocean. Earlier in the 15th century Portuguese explorers had discovered and settled two of the small island groups, the Madeiras and the Azores. Between 1456 and 1460 Portugal occupied the Cape Verde Islands and soon established fortified trading posts in the Gulf of Guinea. In 1488 Portuguese navigator Bartolomeu Dias sailed around the Cape of Good Hope at the southern tip of Africa and opened a sea route to the Far East.Portugal’s growing international influence encouraged Spain to match its neighbor’s achievements. Although claimed by both Portugal and Spain, the Canary Islands came under Spanish control through a 1479 treaty. In the 1480s and 1490s, papal decrees assigned the Canaries to Spain. Despite fierce resistance from the indigenous Guanche people, by 1496 all seven islands had come under Castilian control.Like the Portuguese islands in the Atlantic, the Canaries under Spain were essentially military enclaves and trading centers where paid laborers or sharecroppers worked for a few merchant proprietors. The Spanish introduced cows, pigs, horses, sheep, and Mediterranean plants to the Canaries. The islands proved valuable for their supplies of sugar and fish, as well as their proximity to the West African coast.Columbus’s voyage occurred at an opportune time for Spain. In January 1492 Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand had conquered Granada, the last Muslim kingdom on the Iberian peninsula, completing what is called the Christian reconquest of Spain from Moorish control. Still, Islam was advancing elsewhere and posed a threat to Europe. Spain’s rulers planned to extend Spain’s Christian crusades overseas. They readied an armed expedition to North Africa, declaring Muslim-held Jerusalem as the ultimate goal, but that army was ultimately diverted to war in Italy. They also sponsored Columbus, who proposed to reach India or Asia by a westward route and so give Spain an alternate route to Jerusalem. They also hoped his voyage would bring Spain international prestige and fabled riches.Thus, Spain justified its imperial expansion on four grounds: to spread its religion; to reinforce national unity and identity by keeping alive a sense of national mission; to enhance Spain's international power; and to compete with Portugal for trade, territory, and glory.Columbus laid the foundation of the Spanish overseas empire by claiming for Spain the lands he explored in the Caribbean islands and establishing the first European colony there. At that time Europeans simply assumed that if representatives of Christian nations discovered previously unknown lands and peoples, they had the right and the responsibility to take charge of them. In 1493, to formalize their claims to the lands that Columbus discovered, Spain began diplomatic negotiations with Portugal and with the papacy, which served as a sort of international mediation agency. Because Spain and Portugal had similar desires to expand, the papacy helped reduce conflict between the two nations by establishing formal boundaries.A series of papal decrees confirmed Spain's claim to sovereignty in some of the lands that became known as America. The papacy based these decrees on what was considered to be the Spaniards’ responsibility to spread Christianity and Christian ways of life to the inhabitants of those newly discovered lands. In 1493 Pope Alexander VI formally approved the division of the unexplored world between the two countries. This was incorporated into the Treaty of Tordesillas (1494) between Portugal and Spain. This treaty established the so-called Line of Demarcation, which set the boundaries between areas that would become Spanish territories and those that would be Portuguese. As it turned out, the treaty determined where Hispanic culture would gain a foothold and where Portuguese culture would take root.On his first voyage, Columbus sighted Cuba and landed on Española (now Hispaniola), the island now occupied by Haiti and the Dominican Republic. He returned to Spain with small quantities of gold, native plants and animals, and six men of the indigenous Tano people. Columbus made three more voyages to the Americas between 1494 and 1502. At that time the area was called the Spanish Indies because Columbus continued to claim that he had reached India. For this reason, the inhabitants of the Caribbean area were all called Indians, despite their diverse cultures.Many of the people who accompanied Columbus on his four voyages were veterans of the Spanish wars to take Granada from Muslim control. Others included peasant farmers, royal officials, a few priests and friars, some women, as well as a few Africans, most of whom were enslaved. On Columbus’s second voyage, he took 17 ships carrying about 1500 colonists, to establish a permanent settlement on Española. Most of those people were peasant farmers, but some early immigrants to the Caribbean neither farmed nor settled. Instead, they relied on plentiful Indian labor and sought to find gold and return home rich. These immigrants were soon in conflict with both the native peoples and Columbus. By late 1494 many colonists opposed Columbus’s policies, such as his handling of the native people’s hostilities. They even filed grievances to the Spanish monarchy against Columbus in his role as administrator of the new lands.Spain’s royal government quickly imposed its own officials, first to collect taxes and then to administer the colony. Its goal was to assert royal control over both settlers and indigenous peoples. In Spain the government established a House of Trade to supervise colonial affairs and to oversee, license, and tax all trade and commerce. As the royal government asserted more authority over colonial activities, Columbus lost effective power, and was eventually replaced by other colonial governors.During the early 1500s, Spaniards used the major Caribbean islands as a base for expeditions to the mainland of Venezuela and Central America. Men called conquistadors recruited, equipped, and led these expeditions, often with the financial backing of merchants. Most hoped to find great riches or legendary places, such as the Seven Cities of Cbola, which were supposed to have streets and houses adorned with gold and jewels, and the fountain of youth, a spring whose waters were said to have the power to restore youth.The conquistadors came from areas of Spain where fighting was a way of life. The wars against Muslims in Spain had lasted for centuries, and clashes between rival clans were common. These men were accustomed to achieving their goals of fame and fortune through military endeavor. By taking treasure, territory, and subjects for their country, they won recognition from the king. Many explorers also felt it was their moral responsibility to convert people to Christianity.With the blessing—but not the financial support—of the Spanish government, these conquistadors made their way through Central and South America claiming territory for Spain. The conquistadors’ expeditions increased Spain’s territory, wealth, and power. In 1513 Vasco Núñez de Balboa and his men crossed Central America and became the first Europeans to see the Pacific Ocean. Six years later Hernán Cortés led an expedition into Mexico and in 1521 captured Tenochtitlán, the capital of the Aztec Empire. In the early 1530s Francisco Pizarro conquered the Inca Empire in Peru. Even so, native resistance to Spanish rule continued for years.From Peru, expeditions pushed north into Ecuador and Colombia and south into Chile. Conquistadors founded Buenos Aires, in what is now Argentina, in 1536 and Asunción, in what is now Paraguay, in 1537. Francisco de Orellana first explored the Amazon Basin in 1541 and 1542, searching for legendary chief El Dorado and his kingdom, which was rumored to abound in gold and precious stones. Other explorers ventured to the borderlands of northern Mexico and the Guiana Highlands, where they generally established only isolated and often temporary outposts. In the 16th century the major permanent settlements were in central Mexico and the Andes Mountains. By the 1550s Spain controlled the areas that are now Mexico, most of the South American continent, Central America, Florida, and Cuba.The European explorers of Central and South America encountered native civilizations far richer and more sophisticated than the Caribbean cultures—for example, the Maya and Aztec peoples in Mexico and the Incas in Peru. They came upon technology allowing relatively abundant crops and encountered forms of empire where city-states dominated smaller satellite communities. Their conquests brought dramatic changes to both the Americas and Spain. The conquistadors and colonizers introduced European culture and religion to the Americas, while Spain gained enormous wealth from the spoils of its conquests and from silver and gold mines in the newly conquered lands.
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  #2  
Old 07-19-2009, 09:08 AM
decade decade is offline
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Default flcocajuncujo did you know?

okay.
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Old 07-19-2009, 09:13 AM
click click is offline
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Default flcocajuncujo did you know?

Glory days, they pass you by.Glory days, in the blink of a young girl's eye.Glory days, glory days, glory days.
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Old 07-19-2009, 09:18 AM
Steve Steve is offline
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Default flcocajuncujo did you know?

Thanks.
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Old 07-19-2009, 09:23 AM
Amenda Amenda is offline
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Default flcocajuncujo did you know?

YES i knew it
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