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British Empire

Timeline of the British Empire

First British Empire

1497 John Cabot, sent by King Henry VII on an expedition to discover a route to Asia via the Atlantic, reaches the coast of Newfoundland. He claims the land for the British crown

1562 English naval commander John Hawkins begins his involvement in the slave trade between West Africa and the New World. He and Francis Drake are given permission to carry out privateering raids against Spanish ports in the Americas

1577–80 Francis Drake circumnavigates the world

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