During the reign of the Catholic monarchs (15th century), the accumulation of huge territories because of this marriage and future conquests, made the Spanish Empire became difficult to control directly. For that, the kings created the form of Viceroyalty that could be defined as a regional division within the Empire. That portion of land was led by the viceroy, the official most important and direct in the hierarchy under the King. Being land of large size, typically all functions could be controlled by the viceroy, whether political, economic, social and legal functions.
In the case of America, territories were yes or Yes organize this form since, due to the distance of the same with Spain, the presence of the Spanish kings of the day was impossible. Thus, the Spanish Crown organized regions conquered on viceroys who were, in general, very widespread and abundant (therefore, difficult to control even though officials were in them). The most important viceroyalties of the colonial period were those of new Spain (present territories of Mexico and Central America), the Peru and Nueva Granada (current territory of Venezuela). The case of South America was a case apart since the territories would not exploited and organized as Viceroyalty until 1776, moment in which was established the Viceroyalty of the Río de la Plata.
This Viceroyalty would be that less time would last since nearly forty years later would start the wars of independence between the Creole and Spanish revolutionaries who would make that the power of the Spanish Crown ended disappearing from these regions of the planet.
Article contributed by the team of collaborators.