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Early American Civilization

             Us humans would like to believe our own culture is unique. In reality, basic human methods interacting with our environment and sheer survival techniques tell us otherwise. Human civilization or the development of a culture of people is shaped by its surroundings and basic beliefs from which they were brought up. The settlers of Jamestown and Plymouth were both descendants of the British Crown, and were brought up under the same Protestant theology. Under such conditions, it is only natural for historians to find similarities, both qualitative and quantitative, between the two early American Colonies. .
             Although the two colonies find themselves very similar at the later stages of their settlement, the reason for their colonization, the grounds from which motivated them to leave their homeland and venture into the unknown waters of the Atlantic remains different. Europe was a very religiously volatile place in the 16th Century, especially in England. After the Church of England was reconstituted and the rise of the Calvinist doctrine and theology, an extreme Protestant group called the "Separatists" demanded fuller reformation and when they failed to achieve their objectives, these "Puritans" simply moved to the Netherlands between 1607 and 1609 (Murrin, 54-55). After tens years of religious freedom in Holland, these Puritans suddenly realized that their descendants will grow up as Dutch, not English. For fear of discrimination, the group negotiating rather harsh terms with the London Company, and sailed off to the Americas on the Mayflower (Murrin, 69). Unlike the religious freedom sought by the Puritans, the founders of the Jamestown colony we motivated by pure greed. With hopes of discovering rich gold and silver mines, a northwest passage to the continent to Asia, a cure for syphilis and other valuable products for sale in Europe they sailed into the Atlantic (Murrin, 59).

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