When I think of the Spanish Empire, I think of the vast swathes of the Americas that were Spanish colonies until the independence movement of the early 19th century. But it survived beyond that period, albeit substantially reduced in size. A few other places (Cuba, the Philippines) lingered under Spanish control, but were gradually peeled away by events like the Spanish-American War. And Spain held a few territories in Africa well into the 20th century—none later than the area known as Western Sahara, Spain’s last colony, which gained a sort of quasi-independence in 1975.
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