This in turn encouraged greater governmental commitment to conquest. White colonists in South Rhodesia illegally claimed independence inand the blacks gained control of their country, Zimbabweinwhich meant the close of the British Empire in Central Africa.
The West Indian islands under British control were either self-governing or Crown colonies but all still slave societies, with the number of blacks largely outnumbering the whites. In broad terms, the Southern Colonies were ruled by the high-class people who developed a political system that honored local laws and customs based upon their elite, socially-stratified beliefs The English East India Company was one of these and obtained a royal charter in English possessions in the Americas were simultaneously being added to by acquisitions and conquests in the Caribbean.
The New Hebrides were under French and British control from onward. Britain became interested in acquiring northern territories perhaps equally rich in gold or minerals.
Representative government was introduced in as a result of the growing prosperity and industrialization thanks to diamonds and gold discovered in the Transvaal of the colonies.
The Caribbean colonies constituted the hub of the empire, and the American colonies and the Mother Country, the spokes. Newfoundland, which had not been a part of the confederation, had acquired Dominion status in but relinquished government to Britain in as a result of economic difficulties.
Burma gained independence in and did not join the Commonwealth.