Hardly had the Spaniards and Portuguese established their first footholds in the newly discovered Americas they claimed as their exclusive preserves than their European rivals and enemies were on the scene. In what came to be known as the Spanish Indies they endeavoured to obtain some of the continent's staggering wealth in precious metals. In Brazil they were after the logwood that could be more or less had for the taking. It produced dyes far superior to those then in use in Europe and in great demand in an expanding textile industry, of which that of England was a considerable part. Besides which there was the pleasing prospect that Brazil's great rivers might give access to the silver mining regions of Spanish South America. Such predatory urges were sharpened as Protestantism took root in Western Europe. Convinced that the military strength of Spain, the continent's leading Catholic power, stemmed from American bullion, zealous Protestants believed that could this wealth only be diverted into the right hands the true faith would be saved, its adherents duly rewarded and Spain, deprived of its lifeblood, ruined. But the implementation of this godly strategy was no obstacle to conducting a lucrative commerce with the arch-enemy. Sugar and tobacco, of which the Iberian Americas were soon substantial producers, could be purchased for sale in a growing European market. Equally appealing was the opportunity to sell to Portuguese and Spanish colonists the African slaves their plantation economies demanded. And no less attractive or rewarding was the chance to supply them with those European goods, both luxuries and necessities, which they were forbidden to produce for themselves and which Iberian industries were increasingly unable to provide, or which, through the inadequacies of the Spanish and Portuguese imperial commercial monopoly, were usually in short supply and invariably grossly over-priced.