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Questions tagged [economy]

Questions which concern the historical management, distribution, and usage of resources; why a particular resource, or state of production, occurred in a certain way.

7
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2answers
142 views

How did agricultural productivity change in Italy with the fall of the Roman Empire and through the early Middle Ages?

I have heard that overall agricultural productivity decreased with the fall of the Roman Empire in the West. In part at least it must be in relation to a general decrease of population - less people ...
1
vote
3answers
341 views

Who was the first to point out that transmutation of gold would be mostly useless, since it would simply lead to inflation?

For millenia it was a goal of princes and alchemists to produce the Philosopher's Stone, a device by which common metals could be transmuted into gold. To modern people who know about economics, it ...
12
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3answers
495 views

What factors led to much higher US war bond sales and participation rates in WWII over that of WWI?

Sample US WWI Liberty Bond poster (left) and WWII War Bond poster (right). Source: Wikipedia Financing World Wars I & II in the United States In reviewing the United States efforts to finance ...
2
votes
1answer
176 views

How could Germany afford waging WWII? [duplicate]

I have been asked on several occasions how could Germany afford to start such a big war as WWII. Of course, they mean multiple aspects such money and other actors (countries) allowing it. Also, ...
3
votes
1answer
197 views

What expenses did a village have?

I'm trying to research the incomes and expenditures of a small village in medieval England. The village occupies a formerly abandoned settlement situated against an abandoned castle. The village is a ...
8
votes
1answer
169 views

Did indentured servants in British North America have job security?

Most people know about the practice of Indentured Servitude in the British North American colonies - that workers would receive "free" passage to the Colonies in exchange for working for the ...
64
votes
6answers
15k views

Has an individual ever purchased an entire country?

At any point in history, has an individual ever purchased an entire country - using their private wealth? Specifically, I'm looking for any examples of somebody who has purchased an entire already-...
5
votes
0answers
64 views

Economic aftermath in Europe and the Middle East of the Black Death

The following excerpt is from Blinkist's summary of The Silk Roads by Peter Frankopan: Europe after the plague was an altogether different place. The population had fallen dramatically, but this ...
5
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0answers
239 views

What did a WW2 fighter cost?

The second world war was among other things a war in resources and economy. So it got me wondering, what were the prices for fighter planes used? With some searching I count not find a satisfying ...
37
votes
3answers
5k views

How and when was the modern company ownership structure invented?

More specifically I mean the very common structure with the following roles: Shareholders Board members CEO When was this structure invented, and how? It would also be very interesting to get any ...
12
votes
3answers
674 views

How extensive and developed was the ancient Kushite (Nubian) horse trade?

In 1997 there was a fascinating paper published called The Horses of Kush by Lisa A. Heidorn in the Journal of Near Eastern Studies which summarized some finds about the popularity of horses from Kush ...
16
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3answers
1k views

How profitable was India for the British Empire in the 1800s?

I recently read Imperial Twilight, an excellent history of the opium wars. The author claims several times that while the British trade with China was very lucrative, India was by contrast "...
1
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1answer
230 views

Why did Shock Therapy fail so badly?

Why did shock therapy fail during perestroika? Has shock therapy ever worked in other situations? Was it responsible for the creation of the nomenclature and oligarchs? Are there any authors who ...
2
votes
1answer
101 views

Pre-1900s advertising methods targeting a sub-population stratified by demography/social classification

In my view, the term "Millennial" (insert air quotes) now defines the current young (< 40 years of age) generation. It also possibly provides some sort of identity to a generation who are ...
5
votes
1answer
201 views

Why did Denmark, unlike in other 'rich' nations, favour agriculture in the 1920s?

According an article on the Economic History Association website, An Economic History of Denmark, Structural development during the 1920s, surprisingly for a rich nation at this stage, was in ...
8
votes
5answers
358 views

How do we measure the adequacy of pre-modern monetary supply?

In a comment to a response to another question, P. Geerkens made the offhand comment that: the monetary supply of Europe was grossly inadequate until New World silver arrived. I'm intrigued. How ...
28
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7answers
7k views

Has there ever been anything like the oil boom we see today?

Since the discovery of oil, there have been entire nations that have literally been built from the ground up almost completely with oil money. This has been done, and is still being done, in ...
-4
votes
2answers
243 views

Were there any ancient civilisation that functioned without currency or bartering? [closed]

As required here is how I define the terms used in this question: • money/currency: is something that has little use to the individuals (such as metal coins) but has a commonly recognized value the ...
5
votes
1answer
231 views

German 10 zehn heller

This 10 zehn heller , which I believe at the top on the reverse says "Notgeld" but it is really hard to make out. The date looks like "1827" but is probably 1923 and it seems to have a wood grain ...
1
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2answers
285 views

Did Nazi Germany suffer hyperinflation during the war? Why or why not?

I've heard about hyperinflation in Germany right after WW1, and also in West Germany right after WW2. However, I've never heard of hyperinflation in Nazi Germany during WW2. It seems a very typical ...
3
votes
1answer
268 views

What was the biggest shipbuilding centre in Europe during the Second Industrial Revolution?

I'm specifically interested in the United Kingdom, though I'd love to get a comparison between countries. I would like any answer to cite records of number or tonnage of ships built. I'm interested ...
2
votes
0answers
129 views

Did the Russian alcohol monopoly cover the whole Russian territory?

Crownhart-Vaughn's introduction to her translation of Krasheninnikov mentions an Imperial monopoly on liquor, and the state's difficulty in enforcing it, in 1750s Kamchatka. One main principle of the ...
3
votes
3answers
303 views

Income versus living expense in USSR during the 1980's and 1990's

My understanding of life in the USSR was that both the salaries and living costs were more or less state controlled and fixed with very little variation. I wanted to ask about the sizes of peoples ...
-1
votes
2answers
137 views

If the prices for cotton increased during the Industrial Revolution, how would the increase affect the market for farm land? [closed]

Since cotton was a major crop on farm land, if the price of cotton increased, the price of farm land would also increase. This would increase the demand for farm land and shift it to the right. Would ...
-5
votes
1answer
168 views

What happened to the Philippines, Thailand and Malaysia in c. 1975 and c.1990? [closed]

can someone tell me what happened in 1973 and 1988. Thank you.
1
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0answers
73 views

What happened in Southeast Asia in these years?

Im interesting to know what happened in the GDP growth in those years. I think that the 1964 and 1978 decline was because of the fall in oil prices, but im not sure. And in 1970 i really don't know ...
2
votes
1answer
381 views

How could the Roman sestertii/sesterces be converted into modern terms (say 2017 US$)?

Of course, the value of the sesterti must itself have fluctuated over the centuries it was in use. And so if I must narrow it down, I am particularly interested in its value during the time of ...
4
votes
1answer
407 views

Why don't the Americas use ISO paper sizes?

In the mid-sixties, most countries standardized on ISO paper sizes (A-series, B-series, etc.). The Americas didn't. Why not? (Around the same time there was a failed push in the US to switch to ...
16
votes
1answer
705 views

What evidence is there for chain stores or restaurant chains in Ancient Rome?

In his book City, David Macaulay creates a fictional Roman city called Verbonia to show how a 'typical', planned Roman city was started from scratch. Although Verbonia and thus its characters are ...
10
votes
1answer
559 views

What percent of the US Federal Budget was spent on WW2?

From 1941 Dec 7 to 1945 May 8, what percent of the US Federal Budget was spent on the war? I would like to compare this to today's military spending, which according to this paragraph in wikipedia, is ...
3
votes
1answer
244 views

Was the Holy Roman Empire a financial union as well as a defensive union?

The Holy Roman Empire was a union of countries under one rule and under one emperor. My question is: Was the Holy Roman Empire a financial union too or just defensive union? For example was any tax ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

If the UK received the highest amount of Marshall Aid, why was it broke?

After WW2, Marshall Aid was distributed across Europe to facilitate the rebuilding of countries devastated by the war. West Germany received a large amount of this, and soon had a thriving economy. ...
-1
votes
1answer
252 views

What was the longest lasting economic bubble? [closed]

The Roaring Twenties bubble lasted around eight years. What was the longest-lasting known bubble that economists agree has already popped?
3
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0answers
71 views

Is there historically a clear connection between a better economy and a freer market? [closed]

Where as a better economy is defined as higher GDP per capita. And the ''freedom'' of a market is decided by the amount of taxes.
2
votes
4answers
220 views

Has there been talk of a post-work economy before?

In recent years there has been a lot of talk about the topic of a post-work economy. This includes conversations, news articles, and professional studies. Take for example this LA Times article, ...
6
votes
2answers
503 views

How economically profitable for Nazi Germany were the occupied countries in Western Europe?

Despite the invasions costs, there were at least short-term economic gains as a result of plundering and the confiscation / taking over of resources and factories. Were those benefits so evident in ...
37
votes
2answers
4k views

How did the American Civil War help the U.S economy recover from the Panic of 1857 given that civil wars are extremely destructive?

From the Wikipedia article on the Panic of 1857: Beginning in September 1857, the financial downturn did not last long; however, a proper recovery was not seen until the American Civil War. ...
3
votes
1answer
160 views

Did the Canadian Tuxedo emerge out of the Wool Shortage of 1973?

I understand that the Hudson Bay Company is responsible for the proliferation of the "Canadian Tuxedo". The Canadian Tuxedo is described as a denim jacket with jeans. The denim jacket must have ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

What did the British Empire mean by “Free Trade” in reference to the colonies?

Background: This feels like sort of a silly question for me to be asking after reading about the Victorian Age and the British Empire for several months, but here goes. As I've read about the ...
6
votes
3answers
429 views

Did the U.S economy flourish after national debt was eliminated by President Andrew Jackson in 1835?

President Andrew Jackson totally eliminated U.S national debt in 1835. Did the U.S economy boom in the aftermath of debt elimination as a result of not being shackled by debt? Was it good economic ...
9
votes
1answer
645 views

At the start of Barbarossa, what was the state of Germany's oil supply?

Very recently, I came across this statement from Wikipedia: In 1938, two thirds of German oil supply came from the United States and Latin America. It has a citation, some book reference that ...
15
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3answers
1k views

In the first half of 20th century, how was gold inspected for authenticity?

Let's say this for the years 1900 - 1950, before we had modern analysis tools. When trade payments were made in gold, how was the gold inspected for quality? How did they assess the purity of gold, ...
3
votes
1answer
156 views

Differences among foraging, cultivation, domestication

I am currently researching the transition from hunter-gathering bands to agricultural communities. I am coming across the word cultivation a lot. It's getting confusing, because sometimes the word ...
3
votes
2answers
220 views

Did the Soviet Union investigate greenhouses in the early 1920's?

The Soviet Union had major food problems in the 1920's, what with the civil war and an attempt at forced requisitions. Their solution was the NEP, which used grain taxes instead of total requisition, ...
1
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2answers
231 views

Quantifying economic mobilization?

Total war requires mobilization of the economy. The degree of a nation's mobilization can be quantified in two major ways: Negatively: as, e.g., the reduction of "non-essential consumer production" --...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

What were the major imports and exports of Germany and France from 1850-1915?

Background: I've been doing some digging on nineteenth century trade, and so far have found this list of Britain's major imports to be an extremely helpful big picture guide. Sadly, I've yet to google ...
4
votes
4answers
938 views

Why has the Brazilian currency been changed so often throughout its history?

It seems like currency in Brazil has been changed many times over the period of its existence. The last time the currency changed was in 1994, with the introduction of the modern Brazilian Real (BRL, ...
3
votes
1answer
167 views

In modern terms (for example the 2017 US dollar), how much purchasing power is 50,000 (French) Francs in 1829?

Not simply a conversion of money, as even independent of inflation, the value of basics like bread and such change over time. I am reading "The Count of Monte Cristo" and a character has just remarked ...
6
votes
1answer
173 views

Did anyone in Alta California pay in cash?

In the Spanish and Mexican eras, California was an economy very cut off from its mother countries. Most trade was by bartering goods [Josiah Belden by Doyce Nunis, Jr., 1962]. Is there evidence of ...
1
vote
2answers
460 views

Was Brezhnev's rule an “era of stagnation” [closed]

Reading my IB textbooks, they say Brezhnev's rule was an "era of stagnation". However they are only able to cite evidence of economic stagnation when claiming that would require "stagnation" in ...