Since the early 1500’s England had imperial ambitions but never the money to complete it. However, following the defeat of the Spanish Armada, England felt a sudden urge to begin to build overseas colonies all over the world. This beginning however would be slow for the first 200 years. This first British Empire was concluded with the defeat and eventual independence of the thirteen colonies in to the USA. Almost immediately afterwards the British turned their attention to India. The second British Empire was massively more powerful then the first and had little to no competition in history. With the defeat of Napoleon, Britain was left with many new colonies that were former Dutch and French. The British would go into a “Pax Britannica” state or British Peace era. This is followed by the Victorian era which saw the world put under the British Sphere of Influence. The Royal Navy stood as the largest navy ever created, a title it still holds, and this therefore ensured that the British could keep close watch on the world and more importantly threaten others. Britain took full control of India in the 1860’s after a mutiny by the Indian people. China came under influence and even the USA. The British were truly unchallenged and their vast empire made over half of the worlds goods. The British however would begin to decline rapidly following the Second World War. While victorious it still struggled greatly. From the 1950’s on wards Britain’s empire slowly decolonized until it’s dissolution in 1997. Today the UK remains a powerhouse but in thew shadow of what it once was. The commonwealth is her only remaining breath and tie to the old empire still left standing.