Britain, like most other industrial countries, had long since begun to run an unfavourable balance of trade which was increasingly offset, however, by the income from overseas investments. In addition, surplus capital was often more profitably invested overseas, where cheap materials, limited competition, and abundant raw materials made a greater premium possible. Additionally, Britain wanted the southern and eastern coasts of Africa for stopover ports on the route to Asia and its empire in India. The rivalry between the UK, France, Germany and the other European powers account for a large part of the colonization.
European expansion before Antecedents of European expansion Medieval Europe was largely self-contained until the First Crusade —99which opened new political and commercial communications with the Muslim Near East. Although Christian crusading states founded in Palestine and Syria proved ephemeralcommercial relations continued, and the European end of this trade fell largely into the hands of Italian cities.
Competition between Mediterranean nations for control of Asiatic commerce gradually narrowed to a contest between Venice and Genoa, with the former winning when it severely defeated its rival city in ; thereafter, in partnership with Egypt, Venice principally dominated the Oriental trade coming via the Indian Ocean and Red Sea to Alexandria.
Overland routes were not wholly closed, but the conquests of the central Asian warrior Timur Tamerlane —whose empire broke into warring fragments after his death in —and the advantages of a nearly continuous sea voyage from the Middle and Far East to the Mediterranean gave Venice a virtual monopoly of some Oriental products, principally spices.
The word spices then had a loose application and extended to many Oriental luxuries, but the most valuable European imports were pepper, nutmeg, cloves, and cinnamon. The fall of Constantinople to the Ottoman Turks in did not seriously affect Venetian control. Although other Europeans resented this dominance of the trade, even the Portuguese discovery and exploitation of the Cape of Good Hope route could not altogether break it.
Early Renaissance Europe was short of cash money, though it had substantial banks in northern Italy and southern Germany.
Florence possessed aggregations of capital, and its Bardi bank in the 14th century and the Medici successor in the 15th financed much of the eastern Mediterranean trade.
Later, during the great discoveries, the Augsburg houses of Fugger and Welser furnished capital for voyages and New World enterprises. When Prince Henry the Navigator undertook sponsorship of Portuguese discovery voyages down the west coast of Africa, a principal motive was to find the mouth of a river to be ascended to these mines.
Technological improvements Europe had made some progress in discovery before the main age of exploration. The discoveries of the Madeira Islands and the Azores in the 14th century by Genoese seamen could not be followed up immediately, however, because they had been made in galleys built for the Mediterranean and ill suited to ocean travel; the numerous rowers that they required and their lack of substantial holds left only limited room for provisions and cargo.
In the early 15th century all- sails vessels, the caravelslargely superseded galleys for Atlantic travel; these were light ships, having usually two but sometimes three masts, ordinarily equipped with lateen sails but occasionally square-rigged.
When longer voyages began, the nao, or carrackproved better than the caravel; it had three masts and square rigging and was a rounder, heavier ship, more fitted to cope with ocean winds.
Navigational instruments were improved. The compassprobably imported in primitive form from the Orient, was gradually developed until, by the 15th century, European pilots were using an iron pin that pivoted in a round box.
They realized that it did not point to the true north, and no one at that time knew of the magnetic polebut they learned approximately how to correct the readings. The astrolabeused for determining latitude by the altitude of stars, had been known since Roman times, but its employment by seafarers was rare, even as late as ; it became more common during the next 50 years, though most pilots probably did not possess it and often did not need it because most voyages took place in the narrow waters of the Mediterranean or Baltic or along western European coasts.
For longitude, then and many years thereafter, dead reckoning had to be employed, but this could be reasonably accurate when done by experts.
The typical medieval map had been the planisphere, or mappemonde, which arranged the three known continents in circular form on a disk surface and illustrated a concept more theological than geographical.
The earliest surviving specimens of the portolanicor harbour-finding, charts date from shortly before and are of Pisan and Genoese origin. Portolanic maps aided voyagers by showing Mediterranean coastlines with remarkable accuracy, but they gave no attention to hinterlands.
As Atlantic sailings increased, the coasts of western Europe and Africa south of the Strait of Gibraltar were shown somewhat correctly, though less so than for the Mediterranean.
Portugal could claim and occupy everything to the east of the line and Spain everything to the west though no one then knew where the demarcation would bisect the other side of the globe.
They faced occasional Oriental enemies but weathered these dangers with their superior ships, gunnery, and seamanship. Territorially, theirs was scarcely an empire; it was a commercial operation based on possession of fortifications and posts strategically situated for trade.
This policy was carried out principally by two viceroys, Francisco de Almeida in —09 and Afonso de Albuquerque in — Almeida seized several eastern African and Indian points and defeated a Muslim naval coalition off Diu now in Goa, Daman, and Diu union territory, India.
Albuquerque endeavoured to gain a monopoly of European spice trade for his country by sealing off all entrances and exits of the Indian Ocean competing with the Portuguese route around the Cape of Good Hope. In he took Goa, in western India, which became the capital and stronghold of the Portuguese East, and in he captured Malacca at the farther end of the ocean.
Later he subdued Hormuz now in Irancommanding the Persian Gulf. They brought soldiers from the home country in limited numbers; but the Portuguese also relied on alliances with native states and enlisted sepoy troops, a policy later followed by the French and English. Portugal never fully dominated the Indian Ocean because it lacked warships necessary to control the vast water expanse.
Much of the Indian Ocean trade was local and, until the Portuguese incursion, had been conducted by Arabs or at least by Muslims. The Portuguese, who at first had intended to oust the Arabs entirely, found it impossible to manage without them.
The Hindus, whom they hoped to use for local trade purposes, proved unenterprising and had caste restrictions regarding sea voyages. Muslims were soon trafficking again vigorously, with Portuguese sanction.
Individual Portuguese reached Japan infollowed by traders and Francis Xavier later made a sainta renowned Jesuit missionary who laboured with small success to make converts.World War 1: A Comprehensive Overview of the Great War.
Germany and Britain were involved in a naval race for mastery of the seas. Britain had a long tradition of being the master of the seas and Germany knew that she was unlikely to win a naval war against Britain.
For this reason, Germany tended to avoid open naval conflict with Britain. The British Empire General historical overview One reason for that was the late development of the necessary navigation skills.
Colonization was started not necessarily for expansion but rather for trade. Finding new products was a today known as the Indian Mutiny or the Great Rebellion and it lasted 2 years, This. The scramble for Africa began shortly after the slave trade, and ended at WW1, and is a strong representation of the ‘New Imperialism’.
The first country to act was Belgium, who colonized Congo at , but soon, other countries such as Portugal and Great Britain joined in in order to not miss out.
Impact Of European Exploration And Colonization On Native. Impact Of European Exploration And Colonization On Native Also, Spanish are not white - they were conqured by Moors (Africans) for years and are now a darker race that is no longer 'European', obviously, to .
Colonization (or colonisation) France, the Kingdom of England (later Great Britain), the Netherlands, and the Kingdom of Prussia (now Germany), and, beginning in the 18th century, the United States.
Most of these countries had a period of almost complete power in world trade at some stage in the period from roughly to British Empire: British Empire, a worldwide system of dependencies—colonies, protectorates, and other territories—that over a span of some three centuries was brought under the sovereignty of the crown of Great Britain and the administration of the British government.
Learn more about the British Empire in this article.