Anglo-Spanish War (1654–1660)

Anglo–Spanish War (1654–1660)
Part of the Franco-Spanish War
The Battle of Santa Cruz de Tenerife (1657)
Date 1654–1660
Location Caribbean, Spain, Canary Islands and Spanish Netherlands.
Result Treaties of Madrid ( 1667 and 1670).
Acquisition of Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, Dunkirk and Mardyck by the Commonwealth of England
Spain Spain
Royal Standard of Great Britain (1603-1649).svg Royalists of the British Isles [1]
  Commonwealth of England
  France (1657–59)
Commanders and leaders

Spain King Philip IV

Spain Bernardino de Meneses
Spain Cristóbal Arnaldo Isasi

Spain Pablo Fernández de Contreras
Spain Marcos del Puerto
Spain Diego de Egüés

Spain Willem Bette 
Spain Juan José de Austria
Spain Louis, Grand Condé

Commonwealth of England Oliver Cromwell
Kingdom of France King Louis XIV

Commonwealth of England William Penn
Commonwealth of England Robert Venables
Commonwealth of England Edward Doyley
Commonwealth of England Christopher Myngs
Commonwealth of England Henry Morgan

Commonwealth of England Robert Blake
Commonwealth of England Richard Stayner

Commonwealth of England John Reynolds
Commonwealth of England Thomas Morgan
Kingdom of France Vicomte de Turenne

The Anglo-Spanish War was a conflict between the English Protectorate under Oliver Cromwell and Spain, between 1654 and 1660. It was caused by commercial rivalry. Each side attacked the other's commercial and colonial interests in various ways such as privateering and naval expeditions. In 1655, an English amphibious expedition invaded Spanish territory in the Caribbean. The major land actions took place in the Spanish Netherlands. In 1657, England formed an alliance with France, merging the Anglo–Spanish war with the larger Franco-Spanish War.


When the First Anglo-Dutch War came to an end, Cromwell turned his attention to England's traditional enemies, France and Spain. Although Cromwell believed it to be God's will that the Protestant religion should prevail in Europe, he pursued a foreign policy that was at once pragmatic and realistic, allying himself with Catholic France that was engaged in a major and longstanding war with Superpower Catholic Spain. In essence, by going to war with Spain he was seeking a return to a policy of commercial opportunism pursued in the days of Elizabeth I and subsequently abandoned by the Stuarts. Cromwell's attack on Spanish trade and treasure routes immediately recalled the exploits of Francis Drake and Walter Raleigh; and it is not by accident that printed accounts of their activities began to circulate in England at this time. There was, however, one important difference: alongside silver and gold a new treasure was becoming ever more important – sugar. This meant occupation of territory, a step beyond the piracy pursued in Elizabethan days.

During the first year of the Protectorate, Cromwell conducted negotiations with the French statesman Cardinal Mazarin, resulting in the drafting of an Anglo-French alliance against Spain in October 1655. The alliance had an added benefit of keeping the French from helping the Stuarts to regain the throne of England for a few more years.