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Journal ArticleDOI

The Rise of the Fiscal State in Europe, c. 1200–1815: Bonney, Richard, ed.: Oxford: Oxford University Press, 527 pp., Publication Date: December 1999

01 Jan 2000-History: Reviews of New Books (Taylor & Francis Group)-Vol. 28, Iss: 3, pp 126-126
About: This article is published in History: Reviews of New Books.The article was published on 2000-01-01. It has received 66 citations till now.
Citations
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Book
09 Apr 2009
TL;DR: In this article, Allen argues that the British industrial revolution was a successful response to the global economy of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and that in Britain wages were high and capital and energy cheap in comparison to other countries in Europe and Asia.
Abstract: Why did the industrial revolution take place in eighteenth-century Britain and not elsewhere in Europe or Asia? In this convincing new account Robert Allen argues that the British industrial revolution was a successful response to the global economy of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. He shows that in Britain wages were high and capital and energy cheap in comparison to other countries in Europe and Asia. As a result, the breakthrough technologies of the industrial revolution - the steam engine, the cotton mill, and the substitution of coal for wood in metal production - were uniquely profitable to invent and use in Britain. The high wage economy of pre-industrial Britain also fostered industrial development since more people could afford schooling and apprenticeships. It was only when British engineers made these new technologies more cost-effective during the nineteenth century that the industrial revolution would spread around the world.

972 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The authors investigated empirically both the importance of money for military success and patterns of state building in early modern Europe using data from 374 battles and found that when fiscal resources are not crucial for winning wars, the threat of external conflict stifles state building.
Abstract: Powerful, centralized states controlling a large share of national income only begin to appear in Europe after 1500. We build a model that explains their emergence in response to the increasing importance of money for military success. When fiscal resources are not crucial for winning wars, the threat of external conflict stifles state building. As finance becomes critical, internally cohesive states invest in state capacity while divided states rationally drop out of the competition, causing divergence. We emphasize the role of the “Military Revolution”, a sequence of technological innovations that transformed armed conflict. Using data from 374 battles, we investigate empirically both the importance of money for military success and patterns of state building in early modern Europe. The evidence is consistent with the predictions of our model.

233 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The current financial crisis may be deeper and more far reaching than earlier ones except the Great Depression, but it fits into an all-too-common pattern of capitalist development experienced over the past 40 years.
Abstract: The current financial crisis may be deeper and more far reaching than earlier ones except the Great Depression, but it fits into an all-too-common pattern of capitalist development experienced over the past 40 years. What can Marxian theory, with its focus on crisis formation and the internal contradictions of capital accumulation, teach us about the nature of capitalist crises, and what can the actual experience of the crisis teach us about Marxian theory? In what ways has the distinctive geographic unfolding of the crisis-all the way from subprime lending in specific locations to disruptions and spatial fixes in patterns of financial, commodity, capital, and labor flows-contributed either to the deepening of the crisis or to its partial resolution? How, finally, can adequate responses to the crisis tendencies of capitalism and the stresses of endless compound growth be articulated in these times? [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]

126 citations


Cites background from "The Rise of the Fiscal State in Eur..."

  • ...Financial institutions, furthermore, have always integrated with the state apparatus to form what I call a “state-finance nexus” (Bonney 1999)....

    [...]

Posted Content
TL;DR: The authors reconstructs the GNI from the output side for medieval and early modern Britain and finds that, in contrast to the long run stagnation of living standards suggested by daily real wage rates, output-based GNI per capita exhibits modest but positive trend growth.
Abstract: This paper reconstructs GDP from the output side for medieval and early modern Britain. In contrast to the long run stagnation of living standards suggested by daily real wage rates, output-based GDP per capita exhibits modest but positive trend growth. One way of reconciling the two series is through variation in the annual number of days worked, but there are also reasons to doubt the representativeness of the sharp rise and fall of daily real wage rates in the late middle ages, which creates the impression of no trend improvement of living standards. Acknowledgements: This paper forms part of the project "Reconstructing the National Income of Britain and Holland, c.1270/1500 to 1850", funded by the Leverhulme Trust, Reference Number F/00215AR. It is also part of the Collaborative Project HI-POD supported by the European Commission's 7th Framework Programme for Research, Contract Number SSH7-CT-2008-225342. We are grateful to Richard Britnell, Ben Dodds, John Hatcher, Leigh Shaw-Taylor, Philip Slavin, Richard Smith, Jan de Vries and seminar/conference participants at Cambridge, Durham, Evanston, LSE, Tokyo, Reading, Utrecht, Venice, Warwick and Yale for helpful comments and suggestions.

124 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the Spanish colonial state developed into a stakeholder model, in which local interests were deeply invested in the survival and expansion of empire and the means of co-optation were intra-colonial transfers, as well as credit relations between the state and colonial individuals and corporations, which guaranteed that much of colonial revenue was immediately fed back into the local economy, while minimizing enforcements costs.
Abstract: This article revises the traditional view of Spain as a predatory colonial state that extracted revenue from natural resources and populations in the Americas while offering little in return. Using eighteenth-century Spanish American treasury accounts, we show that local elites exerted important control not only over revenue collection, as previously argued by the authors, but also over expenditure allocation. The Spanish colonial state developed into a stakeholder model, in which local interests were deeply invested in the survival and expansion of empire. The means of co-optation were intra-colonial transfers, as well as credit relations between the state and colonial individuals and corporations, which guaranteed that much of colonial revenue was immediately fed back into the local economy, while minimizing enforcements costs. By allowing stakeholder control of both revenue and expenditure, Spain managed to avoid the problems faced by France, where royal control of expenditure clashed with partial elite control of revenue-raising.

107 citations

References
More filters
Book
09 Apr 2009
TL;DR: In this article, Allen argues that the British industrial revolution was a successful response to the global economy of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and that in Britain wages were high and capital and energy cheap in comparison to other countries in Europe and Asia.
Abstract: Why did the industrial revolution take place in eighteenth-century Britain and not elsewhere in Europe or Asia? In this convincing new account Robert Allen argues that the British industrial revolution was a successful response to the global economy of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. He shows that in Britain wages were high and capital and energy cheap in comparison to other countries in Europe and Asia. As a result, the breakthrough technologies of the industrial revolution - the steam engine, the cotton mill, and the substitution of coal for wood in metal production - were uniquely profitable to invent and use in Britain. The high wage economy of pre-industrial Britain also fostered industrial development since more people could afford schooling and apprenticeships. It was only when British engineers made these new technologies more cost-effective during the nineteenth century that the industrial revolution would spread around the world.

972 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The authors investigated empirically both the importance of money for military success and patterns of state building in early modern Europe using data from 374 battles and found that when fiscal resources are not crucial for winning wars, the threat of external conflict stifles state building.
Abstract: Powerful, centralized states controlling a large share of national income only begin to appear in Europe after 1500. We build a model that explains their emergence in response to the increasing importance of money for military success. When fiscal resources are not crucial for winning wars, the threat of external conflict stifles state building. As finance becomes critical, internally cohesive states invest in state capacity while divided states rationally drop out of the competition, causing divergence. We emphasize the role of the “Military Revolution”, a sequence of technological innovations that transformed armed conflict. Using data from 374 battles, we investigate empirically both the importance of money for military success and patterns of state building in early modern Europe. The evidence is consistent with the predictions of our model.

233 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The current financial crisis may be deeper and more far reaching than earlier ones except the Great Depression, but it fits into an all-too-common pattern of capitalist development experienced over the past 40 years.
Abstract: The current financial crisis may be deeper and more far reaching than earlier ones except the Great Depression, but it fits into an all-too-common pattern of capitalist development experienced over the past 40 years. What can Marxian theory, with its focus on crisis formation and the internal contradictions of capital accumulation, teach us about the nature of capitalist crises, and what can the actual experience of the crisis teach us about Marxian theory? In what ways has the distinctive geographic unfolding of the crisis-all the way from subprime lending in specific locations to disruptions and spatial fixes in patterns of financial, commodity, capital, and labor flows-contributed either to the deepening of the crisis or to its partial resolution? How, finally, can adequate responses to the crisis tendencies of capitalism and the stresses of endless compound growth be articulated in these times? [ABSTRACT FROM AUTHOR]

126 citations

Posted Content
TL;DR: The authors reconstructs the GNI from the output side for medieval and early modern Britain and finds that, in contrast to the long run stagnation of living standards suggested by daily real wage rates, output-based GNI per capita exhibits modest but positive trend growth.
Abstract: This paper reconstructs GDP from the output side for medieval and early modern Britain. In contrast to the long run stagnation of living standards suggested by daily real wage rates, output-based GDP per capita exhibits modest but positive trend growth. One way of reconciling the two series is through variation in the annual number of days worked, but there are also reasons to doubt the representativeness of the sharp rise and fall of daily real wage rates in the late middle ages, which creates the impression of no trend improvement of living standards. Acknowledgements: This paper forms part of the project "Reconstructing the National Income of Britain and Holland, c.1270/1500 to 1850", funded by the Leverhulme Trust, Reference Number F/00215AR. It is also part of the Collaborative Project HI-POD supported by the European Commission's 7th Framework Programme for Research, Contract Number SSH7-CT-2008-225342. We are grateful to Richard Britnell, Ben Dodds, John Hatcher, Leigh Shaw-Taylor, Philip Slavin, Richard Smith, Jan de Vries and seminar/conference participants at Cambridge, Durham, Evanston, LSE, Tokyo, Reading, Utrecht, Venice, Warwick and Yale for helpful comments and suggestions.

124 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the Spanish colonial state developed into a stakeholder model, in which local interests were deeply invested in the survival and expansion of empire and the means of co-optation were intra-colonial transfers, as well as credit relations between the state and colonial individuals and corporations, which guaranteed that much of colonial revenue was immediately fed back into the local economy, while minimizing enforcements costs.
Abstract: This article revises the traditional view of Spain as a predatory colonial state that extracted revenue from natural resources and populations in the Americas while offering little in return. Using eighteenth-century Spanish American treasury accounts, we show that local elites exerted important control not only over revenue collection, as previously argued by the authors, but also over expenditure allocation. The Spanish colonial state developed into a stakeholder model, in which local interests were deeply invested in the survival and expansion of empire. The means of co-optation were intra-colonial transfers, as well as credit relations between the state and colonial individuals and corporations, which guaranteed that much of colonial revenue was immediately fed back into the local economy, while minimizing enforcements costs. By allowing stakeholder control of both revenue and expenditure, Spain managed to avoid the problems faced by France, where royal control of expenditure clashed with partial elite control of revenue-raising.

107 citations