|Selvom Holland trænger Spanien tilbage i 1600-tallet
vedbliver Spanien at være en betydelig flådemagt:
... during the XVIIIth century "Spain again became if briefly,
a dynamic seapower"(34). Under kings Felipe V (1700-1746)
and Carlos III (1759-1788) and a great minister, the marquess
de Enseñada , the shipbuilding is of high quality, there
are able leaders (35), as the admiral José de Mazarredo,
one of the finest seamen of his time, or Luis Córdoba
y Córdoba who captures two British convoys (79 merchant
ships taken) during the American Independance War. The Spanish
navy is able to recapture Minorca (recovered by the British at
the treaty of Paris at the end of the Seven Year's War) in 1782.
But, after the failure of the expedition of Sicily (1718), Mediterranean
area is not the center of gravity of Spanish strategy: the main
problem is the line of communication across the Atlantic with
the empire of America. The decline will ocurr in the last decade
of the century mainly for political reasons.
(34 John D. Harbon, Trafalgar and the Spanish Navy, Annapolis,
Naval Institute Press, 1988).