CoCoLaw will provide a comparative account of how early modern colonial laws of England, the Netherlands, Spain and Portugal evolved. The Project sets the colonial laws in two important contexts: the historical continuation that links the colonial experience to the middle ages and the early modern context of continental European empires (Sweden, Germany, Russia). The Project will seek to understand how and why the legal strategies of the colonizing nations developed into different directions. In addition, CoCoLaw will systematically compare early modern overseas legal orders with each other, contributing to making legal history a truly global discipline. Culturally contextualizing and comparative methods best characterize the approach of the Project.