Church and State Relations Term Paper

Pages: 3 (865 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Literature - Latin-American

Spanish Colonial Church and State

Spain and Portugal's Long Lasting Marriage between Church and State

Spanish and Portuguese rule in the New World has been a complicated affair full of tensions and relationships which seem unnatural to the modern American and democratic viewpoint. For generations, the Spanish and Portuguese crowns had intimate ties with the affairs and authority of the Church. However during early American settlement of the state had taken center stage, with undertones. After a reunion of church and state in the New World in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, Spanish and Portuguese lands in the Americas had re-opened the divide between church and state. Throughout rule in the New World, the Church gave justification to the brutal conquest and control over its far away colonies.

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Both early Spanish and Portuguese expeditions in the New World had religious undertones, but were forged by members of the state rather than clergy. Early Spanish conquistadors and Portuguese explorers ventured into the Americas in the name of profit and patriotism. The Spanish and Portuguese crowns found an untouched reservoir of goods which brought enormous revenue to the nation's treasuries. Early conquests, headed by explores such as Hernando de Soto, Hernan Cortes, and Vaso Nunez de Balboa, were the main focus during the early portion of the sixteenth century. These military men sought goods and riches. They destroyed the grandeur of the native populations in order to take control of their lands and gold. However, once the two nations had set themselves up in the New World, they returned to their religious obligations. By the end of the sixteenth century, Spain controlled most of the continental United States, the Caribbean, and a massive chunk of the western casts of South America, (Mills 118).

TOPIC: Term Paper on Church and State Relations Assignment

The seventeenth century witnessed a wave of religious settlers to the Americas. As the Puritans invaded New England, Roman Catholic Spanish and Portuguese settled on the Western coasts of the New World. During this century, the Church gained more power and control of the new colonies. The Church actually mandated religious qualifications for those migrating to the New World. The colonies of Spain and Portugal enforced religious conformism; only those who followed the Roman Catholic traditions and beliefs were allowed to resettle in the new lands of the Americas. The seventeenth century saw both radical ideologies as well as the harsh backlash of the Church in response to those new ideologies, (Miller 234). However, the Spanish Inquisition, which began in the late fifteenth century, was still going on strong. The Inquisition had originally been started by Spanish royalty and had tied… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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