Spanish, Dutch and British Empires

Three global empires have all significantly impacted world history in a variety of ways. The Spanish, British and Dutch empires were all colonial, global forces at some point in history. Although they were all driven by wealth, they had differing goals. The Spanish, Dutch and British empires all extended their political control over seas. Spanish conquistadors colonized a significant portion of the land in the western hemisphere through religious conquests by spreading Catholicism. The Dutch colonized several spice-islands in Asia, South Africa and the Caribbean. The British had colonies all over the world, the most famous, New England.

The British, Dutch and Spanish empires were all incredibly wealthy global powers. The Spanish colonized the new world that was full of riches. In the new world, the Spanish set up the Columbian Exchange, the enormous, widespread exchange of plants, animals, foods, slaves, diseases and ideas between the Eastern and Western hemispheres. The country of Spain was completely dependent on the gold and silver in the New World. The Dutch West India Company was set up and given a twenty five year monopoly to those parts of the world that were not controlled by its East India counterpart: the Atlantic, the Americas and the west coast of Africa.

The British East India Company was an English joint-stock company that traded with the Indian subcontinent and China which enhanced the nation’s wealth. Although all the empires had many similarities, there were also a few differences. The Spanish and the British were more oriented toward colonization while the Dutch were more focused business and trade. In fact, at one point in time the Japanese would only trade with the Dutch as the Japanese were sure that the Dutch were not trying to conquer and colonize Japan.