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Questions tagged [colonization]

The process of a country relocating some of its citizens to a territory under their purvey and asserting political, military and/or economic control over any native inhabitants who may already occupy said territory.

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117 votes
9 answers
47k views

Why did Native Americans die from European diseases while Europeans didn't catch serious diseases from the New World?

Why did Native Americans die of European diseases while Europeans didn't have serious diseases from the New World? I read that most Native American victims of colonization in the new world died of ...
CsBalazsHungary's user avatar
85 votes
8 answers
18k views

How accurate or supported is Jared Diamond's "Guns, Germs, and Steel"?

Jared Diamond wrote a fascinating book that purports to explain, in a very broad way, the development of civilization. It has several explanations for the development of Eurasian civilization rather ...
David Thornley's user avatar
71 votes
8 answers
28k views

Why was Africa colonized last of the continents in the Age of Discovery?

One thing that I always wondered is during the time where European powers were dividing up the world amongst themselves (1500-1900 roughly), why was it that Africa seemed to lag behind in colonization,...
canadiancreed's user avatar
51 votes
3 answers
8k views

Why didn't Portugal found universities in its colonies like Spain?

Imperial Spain and Portugal conquered and developed huge empires. Both monarchies were Catholic and seized huge amounts of land in the 1500s. Both European motherlands had numerous universities, but ...
Aaron Brick's user avatar
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38 votes
9 answers
25k views

Why aren't there any Chinese colonies?

It seems like European nations are all establishing colonies, but I don't understand why China would be any different. It seems like it has the power and resources to do so numerous times throughout ...
louie mcconnell's user avatar
36 votes
4 answers
6k views

Why could China keep most of the lands it conquered after 17th century but European powers could not?

If we look at the map of Ming dynasty, we see a much smaller China. Most of the northern and western part of today's China was conquered during Qing dynasty. In contrast, many European powers have ...
user10320's user avatar
  • 491
34 votes
8 answers
106k views

What were the main causes of successful take over of India by Britain?

The East India Company ruled an entire country of huge size for 101 years (1757–1858). During this time they did almost everything they wanted to do and won almost every battle in India. What was ...
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32 votes
6 answers
8k views

Did Pope Urban II issue the papal bull "terra nullius" in 1095?

Countless sources claim that the origin of the term terra nullius is from a papal bull issued by Pope Urban II in 1095 called "Terra nullius". Here are a two: Pramod K. Nayar, The Postcolonial ...
Gaslight Deceive Subvert's user avatar
31 votes
3 answers
20k views

What were the reasons that the British colonies in North America rebelled but not others?

I know more about the American War of Independence than about other British colonies, but I have begun to wonder why was it just America. The British had colonies in other places but there doesn't ...
MichaelF's user avatar
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30 votes
10 answers
16k views

Why was Germany not as successful as other Europeans in establishing overseas colonies?

French, British, Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch.. they all had vast outreach across the globe on multiple continents. Why did Germans not have this much outreach?
Samid's user avatar
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27 votes
4 answers
13k views

Why did the East India Company accept the Government of India Act 1858?

In 1858, the British Parliament passed the Government of India Act which contained provisions of liquidation of the Company and transfer of assets and governance to the British Crown. The Act was ...
Time Portal's user avatar
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26 votes
5 answers
6k views

Why did it take over 100 years for Britain to begin seriously colonising America?

After the New World was discovered, it didn't take long for Spain, and relatively soon after, Portugal, to begin permanent colonisation there. It took over 100 years after the New World's discovery ...
Alister Sinclair's user avatar
26 votes
5 answers
13k views

Why did the Dutch, French & British acquire minor colonies in South America?

We know that South America was partitioned between Spain and Portugal in the early days of empire when Spain and Portugal were the major powers. Later, in the 19th century, when Spain and Portugal ...
Tea Drinker's user avatar
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25 votes
8 answers
11k views

Why did Austronesian/Polynesian people not colonize Australia?

Australia hosted aboriginal populations since prehistory. However technologically advanced civilizations (in comparison) lived nearby, in Indonesia, Polynesia and New Guinea. Why was it not colonized ...
astabada's user avatar
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23 votes
2 answers
2k views

Why was the area now known as Liberia chosen as the location for repatriation of African slaves in the US?

The American Colonization Society thought that colonizing Africa for the purpose of returning US slaves to Africa was the solution to slavery problems. Why, and how, did they come to decide that the ...
ihtkwot's user avatar
  • 9,685
22 votes
3 answers
4k views

Why did epidemic disease spread only from Europe to America and not both ways in the Columbian Exchange? [duplicate]

In learning about the history of the Americas you often hear about how pre-columbian civilizations operating at a highly advanced level were devastated by epidemic diseases like smallpox, to the point ...
Emmett Palaima's user avatar
22 votes
3 answers
5k views

Are there historical instances of settlers who were largely uncontacted and undisturbed after settling?

I am looking for historical instances of a rather specific and strange scenario: Settlers who settled a wild/unclaimed territory (ideally 100-300 in number) who after settling in the new place, were ...
Alexander Gambon's user avatar
22 votes
1 answer
6k views

Why didn't Britain or any other European power colonize Abyssinia/Ethiopia before 1936?

It is well mentioned while reading books on Africa or, the colonization or “scramble” for Africa, that two countries, Liberia and Ethiopia/Abyssinia, had retained their sovereignty as independent ...
Rohit Hari's user avatar
  • 1,378
22 votes
3 answers
1k views

Why didn't Japan expand into Ezo?

Throughout the first millenium of Japanese history (and before that even) the Japanese rather steadily expanded up Honshu. Once they had taken the whole of Honshu however they seemed largely to stop. ...
Lee Jackson's user avatar
21 votes
8 answers
8k views

Even though Spain and Portugal had many colonies (15th/16th C), what factors permitted UK/France to become world powers later (18th/19th C)?

Some of the first European countries to acquire colonies in the "New World" (and elsewhere) were Spain and Portugal. They "discovered America" (as the euro-centric interpretation goes), and had ...
Amandasaurus's user avatar
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20 votes
7 answers
68k views

Why was China not colonized by any country?

Why didn't China become a colony of anybody, unlike most other Asian countries?
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20 votes
2 answers
6k views

Why did no other empire contest Russia's colonization of North-Asia?

As far as I know, no 18/19th century empire tried to colonize Siberia or the northern Far East besides Russia. That sounds implausible to me and I'm curious how could that be?
Ezra's user avatar
  • 575
20 votes
1 answer
4k views

Why has Hainan been so little fought over?

There are two really substantial islands off the coast of China, namely Taiwan (Formosa) and Hainan. Whereas Taiwan has been occupied, colonised, renamed and fought over for the last 600 years, Hainan ...
Tea Drinker's user avatar
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20 votes
1 answer
820 views

Colonisation of India: Which regions of the United Kingdom did colonial personnel come from?

I'm a linguist doing research on the emergence of new dialects of English spoken in former colonies, especially India. These new dialects have two major influences: (1) Interference from the mother ...
Robert's user avatar
  • 300
19 votes
4 answers
16k views

Why did China annex Tibet?

This is probably a very naive question, but here it goes: Was there an economical or political reason for the invasion of Tibet by China in 1950? It does not seem to me that Tibet is a particularly ...
Steven Mathey's user avatar
18 votes
2 answers
4k views

Why were Morocco and Tunisia made a French protectorate, but Algeria annexed as part of France?

This question is somewhat related to this one. The three maghreban countries of Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia are almost like three sisters and share everything in common culturally and historically. ...
Bregalad's user avatar
  • 5,316
17 votes
2 answers
665 views

Was there a serious proposal to offer India territory in East Africa?

In the recent World Service series The War That Changed The World the episode dealing with India contains a rather extraordinary claim. A panel member, an Indian, says there was a notion during WW1 ...
Tea Drinker's user avatar
  • 11.7k
17 votes
1 answer
686 views

What historical evidence do we have regarding the Lost Colony of Roanoke?

In grade school, Americans are told a very basic story of Roanoke colony. A group of colonists arrive in the New World and establish the colony. The first American of English descent is born there: ...
Artemis's user avatar
  • 740
17 votes
3 answers
2k views

What was the role of Indian princes and aristocratic landowners under British colonial rule?

I am currently reading Ludwig von Mises' Human Action and find it rewarding in various ways. For instance, von Mises points out the following about volunteers' roles even around autocratic rulers: ...
Drux's user avatar
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16 votes
5 answers
4k views

How did former Spanish colonies in the Americas become so fragmented?

If we only consider countries that are connected by land, there are 16 Spanish speaking countries in the Americas, totaling 11,301,072 km2 in area. That's only slightly larger than Canada (9,984,670 ...
Orion's user avatar
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16 votes
4 answers
13k views

How long would it take to travel from England to western Africa in the late 1890's?

I am trying to do some research for a book I am planning to write, and I would like to know how long it would take for a troop transport ship to travel from England to the Gold Coast region of Africa. ...
Steven Drennon's user avatar
16 votes
3 answers
21k views

Economic effects of the Cuban Revolution

What were the economic effects of the Cuban Revolution? Were living conditions improved for the average Cuban? I'm looking for objective criteria like average income, wealth distribution, life ...
ipavlic's user avatar
  • 333
16 votes
1 answer
2k views

Did Japanese modernisation have an effect on Ethiopia?

On his wikipedia page, Tekle Hawariat Tekle Mariyam, "the primary author of Ethiopia's July 1931 constitution" the article calls him a politician and intellectual of the Japanizer school ...
Giraffeshavelongnecks's user avatar
16 votes
2 answers
1k views

New World Sickness

When Europeans came to the Americas, they brought with them "Old World diseases" that decimated the Native American population. There's a big list of them here. Were there any "New World" diseases ...
Nate Glenn's user avatar
16 votes
2 answers
991 views

Why did the Spanish take the island of Annobon in the Treaty of El Pardo in 1778?

The conditions of the Treaty of El Pardo (1778) have always been a mystery to me. From Wikipedia: The Treaty of El Pardo was signed on March 11, 1778 between Queen Maria I of Portugal and King ...
aenariel's user avatar
  • 509
15 votes
7 answers
6k views

Is there a correlation between the colonial power and the stability/success of the post colonial state?

Looking at the history of Ghana relative to many post-colonial African states, it appears to be quite a successful and stable nation-state, both politically and economically, compared to many other ...
14 votes
5 answers
16k views

Why did France put so many resources into fighting Algeria in comparison to its other former colonial holdings?

Why did France put so many resources into fighting Algeria in comparison to its other former colonial holdings? Was there anything unique about the French-Algerian relationship. On Wikipedia it says ...
Cite Lex's user avatar
  • 157
14 votes
2 answers
1k views

What was the impetus for some African nations to participate in the slave trade?

I know that some African nations participated in the slave trade by providing captured enemies as slaves to Europeans, but what are some of the reasons they did? Was it simply a new economic ...
ihtkwot's user avatar
  • 9,685
13 votes
2 answers
3k views

Did Japan have any continental colonies before modern times?

Imperial Japan built up an impressive collection of colonies on the Asian mainland due to their uncontested navy and comparatively modern army. Did Japan ever hold any colonies on the mainland before ...
congusbongus's user avatar
  • 14.5k
13 votes
1 answer
5k views

How much tax revenue did the British Empire receive from its colonies in a given year?

I have heard that India at least was quite profitable for the United Kingdom. However, I do not know of any exact numbers for the annual tax revenue of the colonies in any given year. This book on the ...
Kelmikra's user avatar
  • 303
12 votes
4 answers
5k views

Why was Africa never really colonized? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Why was Africa colonized last of the continents in the Age of Discovery? When the British colonized the Americas and Australia, they made sure to move normal civilians in and ...
user avatar
12 votes
5 answers
5k views

Were the (early 17th C) arrivers/colonists to North America (USA) outcasts from European societies?

I have heard that early pilgrims for 'the new world' (North America / USA) left because they were indigent and had no support in their homelands. I have also heard that some were criminals or ...
New Alexandria's user avatar
12 votes
2 answers
47k views

How many Britons lived in India during the British Raj (1858 - 1947)?

How many Britons lived (not just visited shortly) in India during the British Raj (1858 - 1947)? There might be two answers, both of them interesting: The amount of Britons in India over time - ...
Honza Zidek's user avatar
12 votes
1 answer
827 views

Did any Ethiopian leaders help the Italians?

Around the two Italo-Ethiopian wars, did any Ethiopian leaders side with the Italians? By "around", I mean anywhere from about 1890 to 1936. By "leaders", I mean noblemen, military officers, popular ...
Joe's user avatar
  • 10.5k
12 votes
1 answer
651 views

17th century Japanese colonies in Southeast Asia?

After a period of exposure to European interests, Japan secluded itself in the 1630s. George Lensen wrote in "The Russian Push Towards Japan": On the eve of her seclusion, Japan had begun to expand ...
Aaron Brick's user avatar
  • 27.5k
12 votes
2 answers
540 views

Who owned Franz Josef islands between 1918-1926?

Franz Josef land was discovered and claimed by Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1873. Previously Norway discovered it, but they never reported the discovery. The Austro-Hungarian Empire dissoluted in 1918. ...
CsBalazsHungary's user avatar
12 votes
3 answers
767 views

Why is the Ping Yuen river in Hong Kong called River Ganges?

Why is the Ping Yuen river in Hong Kong called River Ganges? From the wikipedia: Ping Yuen River (also known as River Ganges) (平原河) is a river in northern New Territories, Hong Kong. Its source ...
Apoorv's user avatar
  • 2,942
12 votes
3 answers
3k views

How did the elite maintain the status quo throughout the British Colonies of North America?

Though Nathaniel Bacon himself may not have been poor, the rebellion he became a leader of in 1676 eventually proved to be evidence of the class envy that existed in the British colonies of North ...
E1Suave's user avatar
  • 3,830
11 votes
1 answer
1k views

Were the Islamic Caliphates (Umayyad and Abbasid) and the Mongol Empires truly as benevolent as they are portrayed?

My history textbooks insist on the same idea: these empires were religiously tolerant, allowed trade to flourish, and improved the quality of life for the subjects. On the other hand, all the ...
physm12's user avatar
  • 119
11 votes
3 answers
40k views

In the British empire, what was the difference between a Governor General and a Viceroy?

In the many colonies of the British empire, it seems that the rulers of some were known as Governors General and others were officially titled as Viceroys. Was there a practical distinction between ...
Gwen's user avatar
  • 2,888