The French and Indian War (The Seven Years' War)

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What were the results of the Seven Years' War?

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One consequence of the Seven Years' War (1754-1763) was that in the Treaty of Paris, the French lost their colonial possessions in North America and ceded control of most of their territories to England (though Spain claimed Louisiana). Britain now controlled all of the previous French lands in North America and gained Florida from the Spanish. English power became dominant in North America, and some historians believe that American nationalism grew as a result of the war. When the English under George III passed the Proclamation Line of 1763, forbidding American settlement beyond a line drawn across the Appalachian Mountains, American settlers felt frustrated because they wanted to expand west. The English, however, were wary of alienating their Native American allies. The proclamation line, along with heavy English debt that led to higher taxes through the reinvigoration of the Navigation Acts, were among the eventual causes of the American Revolution.

In Europe, the Seven Years' War strengthened Austria. Though Austria did not regain territory in the war, the country acquitted itself well enough to be considered a European power. The 1763 Treaty of Hubertusburg between Prussia, Austria, and Saxony granted Austria no territorial gains but did recognize Archduke Joseph as the head of the Holy Roman Empire. Prussia under Frederick the Great emerged as a major European power, and Russia was able to start gaining control of Poland without French claims in that country. 

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The Seven Years War, which is also known as the French and Indian War, had monumental consequences for the history of both Europe and North America.

At the end of the war, the British became the dominant power in North America by absorbing almost all of the colonial possesions of France. Canada and the Lousiana Territory both became British possessions, all but removing the French as a power player in the New World.

The British had also amassed a monumental war debt that they viewed as a result of defending the American colonies. Needing new sources of revenue for the treasury, they decide to begin levying taxes against the America colonies directly, which ultimately results in the America Revolution. 

The global position of the French was weakend while the position of other nations, such as Spain, was strengthened. Thanks to the defeat of the French, there was a considerable power vacume North America that other nations were happy to exploit. The Russians and Spanish eagerly pressed in on the new borders which resulted in new conflicts, but empires with more territory.



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