Spain gained enormous wealth through colonization, spent it all, and returned to status as a secondary power. All within a few hundred years.
England gained enormous wealth and property and continues to hold a pivotal role in the world economy today.
There are countless ways to explain this difference, here is one:
Spain colonized South America which was rich in gold and silver deposits, because of this Spain just needed to extract the wealth. Spain didn’t need to build functioning economies, just to get the gold back to spend.
When they had this gold they spent it on luxury not on economic investments because it came so easily they assumed there would always be more.
England colonized land where the only value to be had would have to be created by populations of colonists. England had to build economies and productive states.
Arguably, if the locations of colonization had been reversed the outcomes would have been as well.
^Day 294/90 174 words