Essay on The Effects of Discovering the New World on the Growth of Spanish Power

Essay on The Effects of Discovering the New World on the Growth of Spanish Power

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At the start of 1474, Spain was a non-existent entity that was composed of a series of minor kingdoms within the Iberian Peninsula. However Spain was subject to a process of change that led to the unification of the Iberian Peninsula under one monarchy, which controlled the new world and large areas of Northern Europe. This process of change was stimulated by the revenue of the new world and to varying degrees by domestic and international politics. However the New world was not always the primary factor during this period that catalysed the increase and maintenance of power. Over this time period the revenue from the new world increased, and thus directly Spain’s dependence upon it did as well. Isabella and Ferdinand had no reliance on the new world, as it occurred in the later third of their reign, and as such was viewed more as an economic failure. Kilsby rightly argues that with hindsight, the discovery of the Americas was the “the greatest event since the creation of the world.” Kamen shows us that there was a shift in the new world’s importance, as the “Indian globe” controlled by Spain caused their power and Kamen justily argues that the colonies were the sheet anchor of Phillips Power. The necessity of the new world is entirely due to the funds that it provided that stimulated other factors that contributed to Spain’s growing power over the time period.
The discovery of the New World was a minute factor in the development of Power during Ferdinand and Isabella's reign. Whilst Isabella and Ferdinand did commission Christopher Columbus for his voyage, this was under the pretence that there as huge wealth to be found, however the mission failed and resulted in Columbus returning to Castile in chains. Pendrill argues that the...


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...mplemented. Phillip was further dependant upon his New world inheritance to maintain his policies and authority over his land, shown in the issues of the Dutch revolt. authority throughout 1474-1598 was largely on the basis of religion, and it is clear that religion caused the discovery of the new world, as the capture of Granada fuelled messianic fervour, resulting in Columbus being commissioned by the Spanish. For Charles and phillip, controlling the Netherlands was only feasible by undermining the protestant reformation. Thus the New world was largely a growing source of power for the Spanish monarch's, being the primary factor for phillip in maintaining his authority, but the authority that was fuelled by this power was due to the foundation of religious policies, and marriages during Ferdinand and Isabella's reign that resulted in the expansion of Spanish power.

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