Historical Dictionary of European Imperialism

Historical Dictionary of European Imperialism

Historical Dictionary of European Imperialism

Historical Dictionary of European Imperialism

Synopsis

This unique reference work on the history of European imperialism is designed to provide a ready reference tool for students and scholars. Its major focus is the Spanish, Portuguese, British, Dutch, French, German, Belgian, and Italian empires during the past 500 years. The dictionary offers brief descriptive essays on a variety of topics--colonies, prominent individuals, legislation, treaties, conferences, wars, revolutions, and technologies. References at the end of each entry provide sources of additional information for those interested in further research. Cross-references within the text help the reader to find related items.

Excerpt

Five hundred years ago today, Christopher Columbus was shuttling back and forth among the courts of the major royal families of Western Europe trying to secure financing for his visions. He intended to reach the East by sailing west, and he promised to bring back the wealth of China and break the backs of the Italian and eastern Mediterranean middlemen who were profiteering in Asian goods. Columbus managed to get his financing, and although he never really understood the nature of his achievement in 1492, his landfall on San Salvador launched the peoples of the world on a process of economic and cultural integration that still continues today. In the wake of Columbus's voyage to the New World, the major powers of Western Europe established imperial systems that shaped global politics and economics for centuries.

The Historical Dictionary of European Imperialism is designed to provide a ready reference tool for students and scholars. Its major focus is the Spanish, Portuguese, British, Dutch, French, German, Belgian, and Italian empires during the past 500 years. This volume represents a general overview. Subsequent volumes on the individual European empires will provide substantially more detail. The Dictionary provides brief descriptive essays on a variety of topics-- colonies, prominent individuals, legislation, treaties, conferences, wars, revolutions, and technologies.

Several guidelines were used in selecting topics. For an individual to be included in this introductory volume, he or she had to have a historical significance which transcended his or her own country. Essays on individual colonies usually end with the winning of independence or formal incorporation into the body politic of the mother country. References at the end of each entry provide sources of additional information for those wishing to pursue the subject further. Cross-references within the text, designated by an asterisk, will help the reader . . .

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