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The British East India Company was found smack in the middle (1600) of the period we're discussing.  For a couple of decades they screwed around unsuccessfully trying to oust the Dutch East India Company.  Eventually they decided to plant their butts in India ...

and the rest is history.

The unbelievable profits the BEIC reaped from India was the trigger and sustaining force for the British Empire allowing, among other things, the Brits to conquer more territories with equally lucrative resources.  As an example, ONE 10,990 square kilometer (4,243 sq mi) Caribbean island - Jamaica - returned more yearly profit than ALL of their North American colonies put together.  

The trade in, what we would call basic commodities, was the Oil Wealth of their time.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Mon Apr 11th, 2011 at 04:47:02 PM EST
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basic commodities...

such as sugar and indigo.

But the BEIC got a leg up after the Dutch became involved in their long struggle with Louis 14th and the English got past the Civil War and Protectorate period. Charles II's Queen Consort, Catherine of Braganza's dowry included the port cities of Tangiers and Bombay and good relations were maintained with the Mughal Emperors from 1612 until the mid 18th century.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Apr 11th, 2011 at 08:09:45 PM EST
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