See Article History Alternative Title: In he left Wesel, perhaps in flight from the Spanish who had occupied the town, and from Holland he sailed to the Dutch colony of New Netherland. He apparently returned to Holland the same year, for in January he sailed westward again, arriving at the mouth of the Hudson River on May 4,
Maritime expansion, driven by commercial ambitions and by competition with Franceaccelerated in the 17th century and resulted in the establishment of settlements in North America and the West Indies.
Slave trading had begun earlier in Sierra Leonebut that region did not become a British possession until Nearly all these early settlements arose from the enterprise of particular companies and magnates rather than from any effort on the part of the English crown.
The crown exercised some rights of appointment and supervision, but the colonies were essentially self-managing enterprises. The formation of the empire was thus an unorganized process based on piecemeal acquisition, sometimes with the British government being the least willing partner in the enterprise.
In the 17th and 18th centuries, the crown exercised control over its colonies chiefly in the areas of trade and shipping. In accordance with the mercantilist philosophy of the time, the colonies were regarded as a source of necessary raw materials for England and were granted monopolies for their products, such as tobacco and sugar, in the British market.
In return, they were expected to conduct all their trade by means of English ships and to serve as markets for British manufactured goods. The Navigation Act of and subsequent acts set up a closed economy between Britain and its colonies; all colonial exports had to be shipped on English ships to the British market, and all colonial imports had to come by way of England.
Competition with France British military and naval power, under the leadership of such men as Robert CliveJames Wolfeand Eyre Cootegained for Britain two of the most important parts of its empire—Canada and India.
Malacca joined the empire inand Sir Stamford Raffles acquired Singapore in Dominance and dominions The 19th century marked the full flower of the British Empire. That office, which began inwas first an appendage of the Home Office and the Board of Trade, but by the s it had become a separate department with a growing staff and a continuing policy; it was the means by which discipline and pressure were exerted on the colonial governments when such action was considered necessary.
Partly owing to pressure from missionaries, British control was extended to FijiTongaPapua, and other islands in the Pacific Oceanand in the British High Commission for the Western Pacific Islands was created.
The French completion of the Suez Canal provided Britain with a much shorter sea route to India. Britain responded to this opportunity by expanding its port at Adenestablishing a protectorate in Somaliland now Somaliaand extending its influence in the sheikhdoms of southern Arabia and the Persian Gulf.
Cypruswhich was, like Gibraltar and Malta, a link in the chain of communication with India through the Mediterranean, was occupied in Elsewhere, British influence in the Far East expanded with the development of the Straits Settlements and the federated Malay states, and in the s protectorates were formed over Brunei and Sarawak.
The greatest 19th-century extension of British power took place in Africahowever. Britain was the acknowledged ruling force in Egypt from and in the Sudan from In the 19 th Century, Victorian Britain and Tsarist Russia waged a daring struggle with frontier armies for control of Central Asia.
Imperial officers leading local troops performed as scouts, spies, diplomats and generals through a series of intrigues, negotiations and proxy wars that spanned 50 years. The region under British control was commonly called British India or simply India in contemporaneous usage, and included areas directly administered by the United Kingdom, The most important difference between colonial and postcolonial India was the utilization of land surplus with productivity-led growth by using high-yielding variety Currency: Indian rupee.
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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. INDIA’s top court is hearing arguments challenging a colonial-era law banning homosexuality, with activists optimistic the punitive law will be overturned.
INDIA’S government on Wednesday.
Statistical abstract relating to British India. From to [First number] In digital book form. In Excel spreadsheet form. Statistical abstract relating to British India.