Age of Seafaring: Spain

时间:2015-01-06 单词数:3430

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Age of Seafaring: Spain


It was Spain that conducted the opening of new sea-route and colonial expansion at almost the same time with Portugal. Located in southwest of Europe and bordered by Portugal on the west and Bay of Biscay in the north, Spain began to be a single country in the 15th century and was an important headstream that influenced the world. Its influence as a world empire is that about 500 million people in the world speak Spain, making Spain the third most spoken language in the world.


Under the support of Spain Queen Isabel, Columbus arrived at the American Continent in 1492 on behalf of Spain. Also, under the support of Spain royal family, Magellan finished the first voyage round the world, the world which was separated before was finally connected as a whole world, thus creating a world-class power. Portugal and Spain competed to carve up the world and set up a colonization empire all over the world through new navigation line and colonial plunder and reached their height in the first half of the 16th century, becoming the first generation of world powers.


Compared with Portugal, Spain is relatively large in territory and has a big population and is able to conduct the government’s strategy to set up a colonial empire with central authority. There is also contingency for the successful navigation expansion of Spain as the whole nation has been focused on independence and unification for a hundred years and is void of great leaders and navigators as Portugal has. It didn’t make long term preparation of technology and experts for the navigation expansion. The setting up of overseas colonial empire of Spain was partly due to admiration for and imitation of Portugal’s overseas empire and in most part due to the casual finding of foreign navigators.


The reason why Spain declined and fell is that the wealth taken from colonial empire cannot push forward the technological progress and induce social and economic revolution and therefore cannot support the empire eternally.