Spanish Imperialism and the Political Imagination

Pagden, Anthony
Date published: 
October 1998

With the discovery and conquest of America in the early sixteenth century, Spain became the largest and most powerful of the European monarchies. By the early nineteenth century, however, it had collapsed into little more than a dependency of its own American colonies. In the intervening years, Spain was regarded as a unique social and political community - the most exalted, the most feared, finally the most despised, and always the most discussed since the Roman Empire. Anthony Pagden is a Fellow of King's College and a Lecturer in Modern History at the University of Cambridge. He is the author of several books, including Lords of All the World, published by Yale University Press. This is an important analysis of the lasting influence of the Spanish Empire in the history of early-modern Europe and of its place in the European and Spanish-American political imagination.