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35

No, I can tell you why Spain was neutral. (Sorry, I don't know much about Portugal) Germany and Italy helped Franco during the Spanish Civil War. When the Second World War started, Germany of 1939 was not very interested in Spain. As you know in May 1940 Italy joined the Axis while France was being conquered. After defeat the Germans prepared themselves to ...


22

I mean if the people felt they were Portuguese how could they accept kings with Asturian origins? Because they didn't feel they were "Portuguese" until later on. Firstly, you are taking the modern approach of the nation-state which was absent at the time of the creation of Portugal. At that time, what counted was the relationships of loyalty between the ...


16

Actually, Portugal and England have the longest alliance in the world -- one signed in the Treaty of Windsor (1386). The Portuguese and English agreed that neutrality for Portugal was the most viable stance though Portugal helped the alliance in other ways like evacuating civilians from Gilbraltar to Madeira and allowing later in the war, bases in the Azores....


15

As mentioned in the comments, the Wikipedia entry on this subject does not adequately describe the situation and causes of the foundation of Portugal. The creation of Portugal was nothing short of a miracle which was accomplished by a single man, Alfonso Henrique (1109-1185), known as Alfonso Henry in English. His deeds are best known from the massive tomes ...


14

In "Mein Kampf," Hitler opined, "We stop the endless German movement to the south and west, and turn our gaze toward the land in the east...If we speak of the soil of Europe today, we can have primarily in mind the soil of Russia and her vassal border states." He was concerned primarily with conquering Russia and eastern Europe. Fought France and Britain (...


14

The most important "paradigm shift" of the early 19th century was the Industrial Revolution. That was the harnessing of the steam, and later, internal combustion engines, for manufacturing advances that led to an "order of magnitude" gains (five to ten times) in the standard of living. The great powers of the time were also among the earliest beneficiaries ...


11

The Wikipedia page has a bit of history for you. Remember that the freezer was invented first in the beginning of the 20th century, so before that, salt was a highly important (and expensive) commodity. Everything had to be salted in order to be transported inland. Cod is a good fish because it is lean – fat will get rancid. In the Northern Europe however, ...


10

"The nail that sticks out gets hammer down" While a Japanese saying, it holds true for all the super powers. Be their outside enemies, inside corruption, or just economic bad luck, the hammers are numerous indeed. Spain in particular, was cripple by mega inflation due to all the gold coming from the Indies. Portugal was assimilated into Spain and then ...


10

It is very clear that Brazil declared independence from Portugal, and not the other way around. That is why it is celebrated in Brazil and not in Portugal. There was a fairly short war of independence, fought on Brazilian soil between the Brazilians and the Portuguese garrisons, later reinforced by additional troops sent from Portugal. This shows that ...


10

You're looking at few different questions. 1) Why did Franco not bring Spain into the war voluntarily in 1939-40? a) Popular war fatigue: the Spanish people had been put through three years of a bloody fratricidal war. Remember, aerial bombardment of non-military targets such as capital cities was a brand-new military technique, and it was terrifying. ...


10

Historically, there weren't multiple Portuguese colonies in South America. There was just one. The Portuguese governed Brazil as a single unit since 1549, when the failed Captaincies were merged. This became the Viceroyalty of Brazil (1775), the Kingdom of Brazil (1815, still ruled by the Portuguese Crown), the independent Empire of Brazil (1822, when ...


9

The question is a bit confusing. The way I read it, you're asking why something expensive has enough demand to sustain a profitable trade ("How did the high price of spices allow such high demand?"). The answer is that it wasn't that expensive. A pound of spices might cost several days' worth of wages for an average craftsman, but a pound of pepper is a lot ...


9

Being portuguese myself, I can answer from memory what we've learned from history lessons and popular knowledge. Living on a maritime-driven country, the Portuguese people always consumed large amounts of fish. Bear in mind most coastal fishing is restrained to smaller-sized specimens - the large specimens were more expensive; and to catch big fish, you ...


7

Spain was involved in the invasion of the soviet union by sending 15k troops called "Blue Division". In order to not putting his relations to western democracies at risk, Franco set having the involvement limited to the eastern front as a condition. Already before WWII, ongoing from 1936, Germany supported Franco's forces during the civil war with secretly ...


7

I think you can talk about potential Moorish influences on Iberian nautical expansion in following three areas: Wealth By the 9th/10th Century, al-Andalus (Islamic Spain + Portugal) was by far the most advanced and wealthiest part of Western or Central Europe. When the northern Christian kingdoms expanded south, they were generally conquering places that ...


5

The Order of the White Eagle was ordained by King Władysław (Vladistas) in 1325, instituted on the occasion of his son Casimir's marriage. Ensign: a white eagle, crowned. To this order belonged both noble Poles and Russians [Lexicon Tetraglotton (1660)]. In 1705, Augustus, Elector of Saxony and King of Poland, revived the order. From 1705, many important ...


5

The short answer is that the cost of the invasion would have been greater than the strategic value. For example, both sides tried to invade Norway and Germany succeeded, but it was very costly. Germany had to maintain a significant number of troops and equipment throughout Norway, paying them and feeding them. The cost-benefit ratio for Spain and Portugal ...


5

The argument arises from the fact that the royal family of Portugal fled to Brazil in the early 1800s when Napoleon took over Portugal. They then ruled from Brazil for around 12 years before the King returned to Portugal and his son was left as regent. It turned out to be a good move since the son's son, Dom Pedro II is widely considered one of the best ...


5

The reactions to the Treaty by the other powers were far from swift. On one hand, communication was slow and untrustworthy, on the other hand the New World was much smaller (as mentioned in another answer). England (still Catholic) suffered from the consequences of the Wars of the Roses (1455 - 1485) and had not yet the resources. France was suffering from ...


5

Although the Portuguese had dozens of small forts and watering stations all along the coast at various times, none of these were developed as settlements because South Africa originally had no interesting or valuable trade goods to provide. South Africa has a dry climate and the aborigines were very primitive hunter/gatherers. There were no mines, spices or ...


5

"Some people believe that Renaissance started in Toledo". Who are these people? I think the prevailing opinion is that Renaissance started in Italy. By the way, Columbus came from Italy too. And notice that his first voyage started in exactly the same year when the last Moorish kingdom fell, and Jews were expelled from Iberian peninsula. (As it is ...


4

I believe (although I can't cite a source right now), that Spain and Portugal's colonies were organized around resource extraction - the Spanish grants didn't even specify land, but rather the labor. The English Colonies were organized around building new infrastructure. Although they didn't have the terminology to discuss it, England and France performed "...


4

The "Propaganda de Portugal Society" probably refers to the "Touring Club de Portugal", previously known as "Sociedade de Propaganda de Portugal". It's foundation date is 28/02/1906. That's probably why they date the poster as post-1906. The only thing I can guarantee is that it can't be from before, not in that form. Maybe the society recycled some other, ...


4

According to Colin McEvedy, in 737 after the Muslim Conquest of Spain, the population on the peninsula was around 4 million. Nearly all of that would have been in Muslim-held territory, as there simply wasn't much else but a couple of little strips of land in the mountainous northern coastal region. Toledo was the only city of any real size in Western Europe ...


4

They did, and certainly had quite a few, as an article cited in Wikipedia says: In mid-sixteenth-century Seville 7.4 percent of censused inhabitants were slaves and [...] between 1682 and 1729 the slave population of Cádiz was extremely large, making up perhaps as much as 15 percent of the total urban population. In other cities, such as Málaga, ...


4

It depends who is talking. As @Alex pointed in his comment Serious historians do not use the words "good", "bad", "evil" etc. These notions depend on time and culture. So when talking about different time and different culture, a scientist should avoid them. What is important, the process of taking back Spain (and Portugal) is called not a "crusade", ...


3

It is pretty logical. Back in time there were no electronic, car and many industries, and the wealth - gold and silver - of the world arrived to Europe - mainly to nobles and kings. There was a big portion of extra wealth available to spend, and it was an interesting luxury item since those times the spices in foods were very limited in europe due to the ...


3

It could well be that Annobon, being farther out from the two Bights, has better sailing conditions - more access to trade winds, less likely for fleets to be caught by a contrary wind against the two shores. Thus it is more convenient as a base for ships travelling on to the far east via Africa.


3

There were, believe it or not, limits to the numbers of men and equipment that Hitler had available - and in the event he took on vastly more than Germany could cope with anyway. Armoured divisions by the score simply disappeared into the frozen wastes of the Russian winter. After the autumn of 1941 German resources, and availability of oil, were always ...


3

Things I'm noticing: Mostly steam ships are depicted. The big one in the foreground also has masts for sails. The first such hybrid ocean liner was the SS Great Western, in service from 1838 to 1856. The last such ocean liner to be built was perhaps the SS La Touraine which was in service from 1890 to the 1920s. The two-mast depiction there looks much more ...



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