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Spanish Musketeer, 17th century

Spain is a playable nation in Cossacks 3.

Background[edit | edit source]

Following the unification of the lands of Castile and Aragon, which had been taken by the Moors, an intensive development of the Spanish state began. Trade and industry grew rapidly, and soon after the discovery of America, Spain became the greatest colonial state and reached the peak of its might under the rule of Charles I of the Habsburg dynasty, the chosen Roman-German Emperor. Its American colonies supplied Spain with an enormous flow of precious metals. Then the Netherlands' revolution against Spanish predominance broke out (1567-1573). A mighty army with Duke Alba in command was sent to suppress the revolt. This was a time of long and exhausting sieges of Dutch cities. In the sphere of seafaring, Spain was constantly and seriously hampered by Britain, especially by British pirates. They plundered coastal towns and merchant ships. For instance, Francis Drake's galleon "Golden Doe" plundered the town of Lima on February 13th, 1579, and captured twelve Spanish ships and a lot of booty. Later, on March 1st, he captured a well-armed Spanish galleon, and his plunder brought him about 26 tons of silver, 80 pounds of gold, 13 chests of money and jewelry worth 200,000 British pounds sterling. He continued successful attacks against many Spanish vessels. For his victory he was promoted to Vice Admiral of the British Fleet and was dubbed a knight. The Queen enjoyed half the confiscated booty, the equivalent of about 2,250,000 pounds sterling in gold. English pirate Thomas Cavendish also followed Sir Francis Drake's route. Spain demanded that the buccaneers be punished, but all efforts were in vain. The Queen of England stated: "The Spanish monarch is a dog that barks but does not bite. The only thing I want from him is a regular payload of gold and silver that is aboard his ships." This statement exasperated the Spanish. An enormous fleet named The Great Armada was dispatched to Britain. Already beaten by numerous storms, the Spanish Armada was defeated by the English. Spain had finally lost its predominance at sea for some time until 18th century. Once again the Spanish army failed in the Netherlands. Soon after the War of the Spanish Succession, Spain lost its territories in Italy and Belgium. The Spanish state retained only a small portion of its former might in Europe, but still held vast territories in the Americas.

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