The Importance of the War – The Seven Years War, or the French and Indian War in North America, had a great impact on world history in several ways:
1) Britain conquered Canada. The American colonists no longer needed protection from Britain, and the attempt by Parliament to tax the colonists to help pay for the war sparked the American Revolution.
2) France and Spain embarked upon a major naval buildup, made possible by the retention by France of fishing rights off the Canadian coast. Stronger Bourbon navies made possible the American victory in the Revolutionary War.
3) The debts France incurred in this war and later in the American Revolution helped cause the French Revolution. The humiliation of the army led to reforms and innovations which were later used with great success by Napoleon.
4) Prussia survived the war and retained Silesia despite enormous odds and confirmed its place as an important European power.
5) Russia showed itself to be a major power capable of enormous influence. It gained greater influence in Poland, and this would eventually lead to its partition.
6) By its lack of participation, The Netherlands showed itself to be in relative decline. Smaller states like The Netherlands and Saxony were becoming increasingly vulnerable. Despite its glorious past, Spain confirmed that it was a weak client state of France with minimal military power.
7) Britain confirmed itself as the world's dominant naval and economic power and a force to be reckoned with in the European balance of power. Britain became the dominant European power in India enabling it to eventually conquer all of India and used its resources to further expand the empire. Some non-"Eurocentric" historians believe British control of India made the Industrial Revolution possible.