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What were the three goals of the Spanish colonization in the Americas?

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tangolikerain76 | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted December 11, 2011 at 10:41 AM via web

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What were the three goals of the Spanish colonization in the Americas?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted December 11, 2011 at 10:51 AM (Answer #1)

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The three reasons the Spanish had for colonizing are usually listed as "gold, god, and glory."

"Gold" meant that one of the goals of Spanish colonization was to find gold or to otherwise get economic benefits from the colonies.

"God" meant that one of their goals was to spread Christianity.  This was a goal that they emphasized very strongly at least in their rhetoric.

"Glory" meant that both the individual explorers and the country of Spain wanted to gain glory and power.  The people wanted to become famous and powerful (along with getting rich).  The country of Spain wanted the glory and power than came with having the world's largest empire.

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thetall | (Level 2) Associate Educator

Posted February 10, 2015 at 9:03 AM (Answer #2)

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There are three dominant reasons as to why the Spanish colonized the Americas. First and foremost, there was a strong need for the monarchy of Spain to expand its empire because of growing threats from England, France and Russia who were also out to expand their own territories. Secondly, the Spanish colonization of the Americas was motivated by the need to spread of Christianity. Religion was the strongest driver of its colonial activities and has been noted to have surpassed other goals such as the spread of the Spanish language. The colonial territories had established religious structures in the form of churches and missionaries who worked to suppress the existing beliefs of the natives.  Thirdly, the Spanish colonized the Americas because they needed to advance their economy. This goal was achieved during their voyages when they struck gold in the Americas.


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