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Impact of the 7 Years War on the American Revolution

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Conflict between the French and the English over territory, led to a conflict known as the Seven Years’ War

The Seven Years’ War solidified Britain’s stance as the most dominant European country in the world. However, as Britain attempted to increase control on the American colonies, colonists began rebelling, eventually leading to the Revolutionary War.

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Stephen Brumwell in his book The British Soldier and War in the Americas begs to challenge the apparent image of the British army as starkly divided between the soldiers from the low castes of the society and aristocrats with the low class subject to disciplinary acts, and combat inspired by fear of arrogant officers. This way of characterizing the historiography is testimony to being a straw man. The British army exaggerated the hierarchy of class during that era and ruled by tyrant means. They also faced the problem of ineffectiveness of men placed within the officer corps. In attempting to respond to other historians tawdry depiction of the British army, Redcoats is seen to give excessive ground to those who celebrate it. Brumwell attains enormous success in insisting that the Seven Years war was in all, a British victory, a point not quite emphasized considering the excitement about the provincial forces. The first chapter presents an overview of the war and recollects the large scale infusion of the British forces into their colonies, fundamentally inspired by the defeat of Braddock in 1755 and Oswego s fall in 1756. By the autumn of 1757, seven independent companies and 21 battalions totaling to 20,268 men were in effect. The net effect of this concentration was that the colonial provincial troops embarked on infrastructural roles like transportation and construction. This indicates that the red coats did most of the fighting and eventually won the war

One of the contributors to their success is seen to be the adaptability to different fighting scenes. The army employed a hybrid of European battlefield tactics and guerrilla tactics, leading to the light infantry strategy. In as much as Brumwell is keen to advice against hyping the adaptability of the British army, this advantage had long term impacts on the fighting tactics of the British.

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The war signalled the end to France's status as a key colonial influence in the Americas. The triumphs of Great Britain had significant influences on the world. They caused India and North America to change into “English-speaking liberal democracies” (New). Overall, the war caused Britain to be left in substantial debts. The British government consequently decided that the American colonies ought to assist with the lessening of the debt. (War). This suggestion, and the corruption that existed within the British government, set off protest from the American colonists. On 18 March 1766, the British Parliament repealed most of their requests, while still maintaining its assertion to tax the colonies (Costs)

The Seven Years War was complicated, messy and drawn-out. The effects of the war could be felt all over the word. However, the American colonies were changed forever. Relationships were also soured between groups who had previously been allies. This particular war occurred several centuries ago and, of course, there have been much larger conflicts since then. Nevertheless, every action has a reaction and, therefore, without the Seven Years War, the entire course of history since then may have been much different.

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As shown above, the Seven Years War proved to be a crossroads in the history of British colonial rule in America. Britain was victorious, but after defeating her French foes (along with their Indian allies), Britain was left to contemplate the ramifications of a war that would leave her relationship with her American colonies altered forever. This change would eventually lead to conflict between the colonies and Britain, and ultimately the Declaration of American Independence.

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“Seven Years War.” History of War. Web. 6 June 2011.

“Seven Years War.” New World Encyclopaedia. Web. 6 June 2011.

“The Costs of Empire: the Seven Years’ War and the Stamp Act Crisis.” The British Library.

“The Seven Years War.” Historica. Web. 6 June 2011.

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