Full text: Religion, colonising & trade

appearances. But it was a matter of fact as well as 
of appearance. England, in the sixteenth century 
wholly separate from Scotland, was a small unit. It 
was a much larger home base, it is true, than Portugal, 
ot than the Netherlands when the Dutch had achieved 
their independence; but it was not a big enough 
unit to face the future without feeling the need for 
It is difficult to understand how the soil of England 
can have been overpopulated in the sixteenth century, 
and yet the necessity for disposing of the unemployed 
was a stock argument with advocates of expansion. 
In his Discourse concerning Western Planting,’ 
Hakluyt urged °that this enterprise will be for the 
manifold employment of numbers of idle men,” and 
that the © discoveries and plantings’ of Portugal and 
Spain had found honest employment for the whole of 
their respective peoples.! Similarly, Sir Humphrey 
Gilbert, in his © Discourse to prove a passage by the 
North-West to Cathaia and the East Indies,” dated 
1576, wrote, ‘ Also we might inhabit some part of 
those countries and settle there such needy people of 
our country, which now trouble the Commonwealth.” 2 
Partly because the world was younger and monarchy 
had a stronger hold in England in the sixteenth than 
in the seventeenth century, but largely or mainly 
because of the difference in personalities, the English 
people, or the adventurous members of the English 
people, had in Tudor times, and notably in the reign of 
* A Discourse concerning Western Planting, written by Hakluyt in 
1584. Collections of Maine Historical Society (1877), Second Series, 
chap. iv, p. 36. 
2 Hakluyt, vol. vii, p. 186.

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