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The years from 1450 to 1800 was a time of great significance for both maritime nations and gunpowder empires. Both were at one point successful world powers achieving many personal improvements/benefits. The Spanish and the Ottomans, for example, built 2 flourishing empires based on different principles and serves as an example of how empires grow with success throughout time. As the Ottomans took control of Europe, the Spanish were conquering the New World, and each empire had different tactics that made their empire successful; for example, the Ottoman Empire promoted religious tolerance, unlike the Spanish empire. However some of their tactics were very similar, for example, both empires expanded their influence and rule through the use of their own military.
The Spanish and Ottoman Empire’s methods of empire building differed in that the Spanish captured lands overseas in the New World while the Ottomans captured land in the Old World. Due to the advances in maritime technology, Spain was able to travel to the New World and colonize there, instead of challenging the Ottoman Empire in Europe and the rest of the Old World. The theme of expansion and exploration is greatly shown by both empires controlling over different areas around the globe.
Another difference between the Spanish’s and Ottomans’ methods of empire building was their views on religion acceptance. Unlike the Ottomans, the Spanish were not tolerant of different religions. The Spanish conquered the Americas with the intent of converting the natives to Christians, and if they refused, they would be killed. Although the Ottomans promoted their religion, Islam, peoples of different religions were not persecuted. In fact, the Ottomans created millets, which were little groups of people with the same religious view. The theme of religious beliefs is greatly shown by both empires showing how empires can be strict or limitless toward religious freedom.
A similarity between the Spanish and Ottoman Empire’s methods of empire building was their use of military in order to expand their influence and rule. The Ottomans used their janissaries and their army of trained foreigners, under the reign of Suleyman the Magnificent, in order to push the Ottoman Empire’s borders as far as into Persia and Egypt. They continued to push their borders by controlling trade routes in order to help their economy and also to spread Islam. Similarly to the Ottomans, the Spanish used their military to enrich their trade and promote their religion of Christianity. Their navy, the Spanish Armada, was very skilled. The Spanish sent conquistadors to colonize the America’s for Spain. The theme of power is greatly shown by both empires showing that the more stronger an empire’s military is, the better chance an empire has onto influencing others and expanding their rule.
The Spanish and the Ottoman Empire had similar yet different ideas when they built their empire. Different in the fact that the Spanish empire captured lands in the New World while the Ottomans captured land in the Old World and how the Ottoman Empire promoted religious tolerance while the Spanish didn’t promote it. Similar in the fact that both empires expanded their influence and rule through the use of their own military.
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