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Why was India so important to Britain between c. 1858 and 1914 - Essay Example

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The East, particularly India and China with their old civilizations and glorious past, was politically, economically and socially far…
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Why was India so important to Britain between c. 1858 and 1914
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Download file to see previous pages But in course of time the merchants became the master of the land2.
Like Dutch, the Danish started a Danish East India Company in 1616 and established factories at Tranquebar in 1620 and Serampore in 1676. But they sold of their factories to the British in 1845 for Rs. 12, 50,000. The Ostend Company was similarly started by Flemish merchants in 1723. Its chief settlement in India was at Bankibazar, three miles north of Barrackpur. A Swedish East India Company was chartered in 1731. All these projects, after sometime, could not stand the test of time3.
The victory of the English over the Spanish Armada and the report of the immense wealth of India spread by the English travellers like Ralph Fitch and Mildenball aroused in the minds of Englishmen a strong desire to trade with the East. With this end in a view body of English merchants applied to Queen Elizabeth for a charter granting them the right of trading in the East. In 1600, Queen Elizabeth granted them under the title, ‘The Governor And Company of Merchants of London trading into the East Indies’ - a monopoly of trade in the East for a term of 15 years. This company is generally known as East India Company. India was the bone of contention between England and France but as a result of three Carnatic Wars fought from 1746 to 1761, the East India Company had established her superiority in India. As a result of her success in the wars amongst European Powers in the 18th Century, England emerged as the mistress of the seas4.
There is no doubt that the permanent settlement made the British government highly popular and gave stability to its administration. The causes those were responsible for the success of the English Company.
Firstly it was a private enterprise. This created a spirit of self-reliance among the people. They knew that if they worked hard, they would be able to get profits and if they slacked, they were to be ruined. The result was English company ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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