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.

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98 views

Did Helsinki have higher standards of living than Saint Petersburg when it was a part of the Russian Empire?

For over a century Finland was a part of the Russian Empire. It seems that overall Finland was significantly richer than Russia proper in the early XX century (look at these estimates). Was Helsinki ...
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1answer
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What are some good references for the history of legal business entities? [closed]

I'm looking for books and articles that can elucidate how different legal business entities and types of corporate personhood came to be. I've already found the book “The Company: A Short History of a ...
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What percentage of the German population worked on gathering the harvest in 1917?

It is a well-known fact that Germany suffered from food shortage during World War I, and that there were several causes of this, including in no particular order: The blockade restricting food ...
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1answer
107 views

How did mid-19th century American legislation affect the corporate structure of railroad companies?

It is my understanding that a part of the complexity that the Standard Oil Company built up was due to the nature of US corporate legislation (while, of course, the rest was that they wanted to hide ...
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1answer
105 views

Was a drop in standards of living a significant factor in the revolutions of 1848?

A lot ink has been expended discussing the revolutions of 1848 and their causes, only a small fraction of which I have read. From my point of view, there seem to be two main schools of thought in ...
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4answers
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Can we meaningfully compare the poverty levels in the USSR to those in the USA at the same time and to those in the USA today? [closed]

I was told (by people who had lived there) that the USSR had homeless people but I would guess that the levels of homelessness were much lower and in general there were far fewer desperate people due ...
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What is the oldest “commercial logo” known? [closed]

I'm writing a paper on logos, iconography and different forms of identifications for trade activities. The paper starts with history of logos, which is pretty easy and known. However, I'm wondering: ...
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Are there historical statistics about the number of market towns?

As a way to understand changes in the middle ages, I want to know the development of market towns. Particularly, I am looking for the increase in their number, organised by country and period (e.g. ...
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Why did the Lindman government choose to resign over their agricultural program?

Why did the Lindman government choose to resign over their agricultural program? Did (members of) the government expound on why they chose to take the agricultural program as a matter of confidence ...
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79 views

Are there historical problems of wealth/income inequality causing problems for empires? [closed]

I was talking to a friend who said that empires rose and fell upon wealth/income inequality. He cited the Mongols as reducing wealth inequality and the fall of Rome as increasing the inequality. It ...
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How did the Hansa organize river trade in the 14th and 15th centuries?

How did the Hansa accommodate the transition from sea to river trade along a trade route? Would river travel have been controlled by one group of people, e.g., Guild of the River Oder Merchants? Would ...
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What is Charles Babbage referring to when he talks about the 'College of Laputa'?

In On the Economy of Machinery and Manufactures, what is Charles Babbage referring to when talking about the College of Laputa in the following extract: ...Nor has the wild imagination of the ...
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Was there a contemporary understanding that 1706 was an exceptionally poor year?

This relates to the numerous (British) news items which seem to have overnight turned the present virus-induced economic downturn into a 'historic downturn'. While there are opinion-based aspects that ...
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Has any G7 country deliberately defaulted on sovereign debt to punish a certain country?

Xi Jingping said China would cancel debts to the world's least developed nations, including small island nations. China Has Forgiven Nearly $10 Billion In Debt. Cuba Accounts For Over Half. But China ...
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1answer
124 views

What were the largest companies in the world before and after the Great Depression?

The Great Depression obviously had a very severe effect on stock markets; how did this affect the world’s largest companies, by market capitalization? Were steel companies, such as U.S. Steel, ...
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What were the global economic consequences of the 1918 flu pandemic?

What were the global economic (and societal) consequences, assuming there were any, of the 1918 flu pandemic? I'm just not finding a lot of information out there talking about this particular ...
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3answers
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How much did a transatlantic telegram cost in 1914?

How much did it cost to send a transatlantic telegram – if the specifics matter, say from New York to Berlin – in 1914? (Early 1914, before the war disrupted communications.) How much per word, and ...
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1answer
106 views

Would League of Nations and U.S. sanctions/trade embargo against 1930's Germany had notable consequences in Germany?

My research shows that trade between the U.S., France, and Britain with Germany during the mid 1930's was lower than it had been and was on a decline. This has lead me to ponder the following ...
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1answer
223 views

How was the Pandidakterion organised?

How was the Pandidakterion organised? Wikipedia:Pandidakterion states that the Pandidakterion lacked 'corporative structure'. I do not understant exactly what the corporative structure is and how was ...
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3answers
4k views

Could besieged medieval cities develop a micro-economy during wars to endure the siege for long time? [closed]

During the medieval age, one of the main reasons that pushed besieged cities to capitulate was the exhaustion of provisions (foods,water,drugs...) that maintain the every-day life of the city ...
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5answers
692 views

Was there car insurance in the USSR?

I can't imagine how it works in a planned economy. Does the government replace your car if you crash it? Was there no sort of insurance?
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What does this 1960 West German political cartoon mean?

I have recently seen a [caricature][1] in which a blindfolded man goes along a cliff. The caption was "The German citizen in the 1960's". I thought it may have something to do with the economy, but in ...
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1answer
141 views

Did Industrial Revolution economic systems rely on colonies? [closed]

I have read in the Economic Nobel's prize Thomas Piketty's book the following sentence (translation is mine): "The Enlightenment movement and the Industrial Revolution were partially based on the ...
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3answers
801 views

Why are the historical large cities in the southern US not the large cities in the South today?

When you think about the large and prosperous cities in the historical Southern United States, you think of cities like Charleston, Richmond, Savannah, and New Orleans. However, when you look at the ...
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3answers
349 views

What was special in interwar Austria-Hungary?

I recently spoke with someone claiming that the tail end of the decline of the Austro-Hungarian Empire was an especially fertile breeding ground for inventors and entrepreneurs, especially in the ...
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162 views

Why did South Korea not go the same way as South Vietnam? [closed]

Currently, democratic South Korea is separated from communist North Korea, while Vietnam is united. These two countries had seemingly similar situations. Their former rulers, Japan and France ...
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How to you reply to Henry Ford and Otto von Bismarck? [closed]

All history is bunk -- Ford All history is fairy tales rewritten by the winner of the last war -- Bismarck There is a LOT of truth to what they say. And with PhD thesis like the courtmartial of ...
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1answer
111 views

Did Robert Devereux's monopoly on sweet wine encroach upon Sir Christopher Hatton's monopoly on wine?

I know that Robert Devereux was given a monopoly on sweet wine following the death of Robert Dudley, his step-father and the previous holder of this monopoly, but I recently read that Sir Christopher ...
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113 views

How did a new Inka recover from being cut off from his inheritance?

When a reigning Inka ("Inka" is the quechua spelling, matter of preference) died, his successor was disinherited and all properties, servants and lands were split among the Inka's other offspring. The ...
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1answer
316 views

How did medieval serfs obtain their iron goods?

Serfs were farmers who paid taxes in agricultural produce and subsisted on the remainder. As I understand it, they (unlike freeholders) did not sell their produce or manufactured goods for personal ...
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2answers
405 views

Before the Civil War, did the USA ever offer something like a “5-year plan” for the South to abolish slavery?

Before the U.S. Civil War broke out, did the North ever offer any sort of gradual slavery abolishment deal to the South, instead of demanding that the South stop slavery immediately? I imagine the ...
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104 views

Are there any records of Foreign investments or Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) in history from pre-medieval or medieval period?

A foreign direct investment (FDI) is an investment in the form of a controlling ownership in a business in one country by an entity based in another country. If we look at the articles about the ...
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After the end of slavery at the closure of the US civil war, what percentage of former slaves stayed at their previous workplaces?

Upon the abolition of slavery in the USA, there were suddenly millions of former slaves set free. But they were left without an obvious workplace. On the other side, millions of jobs done previously ...
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3answers
676 views

Is it true that Nazi Germany replaced prices ending in .99 by round prices and called this “Aryan pricing”?

On a questionable website full of revisionist pro-nazi propaganda, which is not worth linking to (*), I found the following statement: Along the same lines, I remember a National Socialist ...
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4answers
880 views

Was WW2 necessary for Germany economically?

Many point to improvements in Germany's economy that took place under Hitler prior to WW2. To a certain extent, some of this must have been attributable to theft of Jewish property and the jobs in ...
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1answer
241 views

Was the introduction of paper money controversial like cryptocurrency?

I dont know much about cryptocurrency, but I know it is controversial. There are people on both sides. Is there historical evidence that paper money faced a similar thing? Were there people that ...
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2answers
644 views

Why did conquered countries after WWII recover, but countries conquered later continue suffering? [closed]

Nations damaged severely in WWII (suffered major economic collapse and civilian casualties) such as Japan, Germany and Poland have not only recovered but are doing better than ever before. Most of ...
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2answers
497 views

Why did towns became ghost towns after the mines dried up?

It seems that the gold rushes on every country produced a number of ghost mining towns, when the mines that supported said towns produced no more ore, or it was too expensive to continue mining. My ...
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106 views

What was the most expensive war of the 20th century? [closed]

Putting aside the enormous "cost" of wars in terms of human life and suffering, what about the economic costs? Once I studied the Vietnam war and Gabriel Kolko in one of his books described how much ...
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2answers
261 views

The history of rivalry between US and Britain in late 19th Century and early 20th Century [closed]

I have read the references from Wikipedia. But they were mostly talking about the American oversea trade in the Europe market. But I am more interested in Britain's reactions to the challenge posed by ...
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1answer
363 views

How did currency exchange work in the Middle Ages, especially if the coins are not recognized?

According to Wikipedia, there were a wide range of currencies in the Middle Ages: The various Germanic states in the west all had coinages that imitated existing Roman and Byzantine forms. Gold ...
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3answers
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How did redenomination prevent the Weimar Republic from further decline?

My school is currently teaching us European History in the 20th century, and we were on the topic of the Weimar Republic. It got me thinking, how exactly did redenomination of currency save the ...
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1k views

Were there any developed countries that became “undeveloped” for reasons other than war? [closed]

From what I know developed countries seem to have stayed developed (or at least recovered quickly) even if there was a devastating war, e.g. Germany after WW2. If it's indeed the case that developed ...
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How did the Romans mint coins?

I would like to understand how the Romans minted coins. Mining, smelting and refining are no mystery; I can envision ways in which uniform coin-blanks might have been made : but the big problems are (...
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254 views

What was the economic impact of Notre Dame When it was built?

After visiting Notre Dame a while back I became curious about the economic impacts behind building a cathedral in the middle ages. The literature and the guides talked about a variety of motivations ...
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655 views

What's the origin of the movement to withdraw the United Kingdom from the European Union?

Who first proposed that the UK should leave the EU, and why? How did this movement grow in support?
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350 views

Why was agriculture more conducive to slavery in U.S. South than the North?

The most common explanation I hear for why there was more slavery in the South than the North in is that farming was more profitable in the South due to climate, soil quality etc. and the North had ...
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304 views

Economic status of whites in the US South at the height of slavery?

In Tony Horwitz' book Midnight Rising about John Brown's raid, on page 23 discusses Calhoun's stance on slavery: he asserted that slavery freed Whites from drudgery and class conflict. I wonder if at ...
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1answer
86 views

How did public debt financing through annuities work in the States General of the Netherlands?

We're going through some readings regarding how the formation of modern states was structured through the many wars throughout Europe across the centuries, and one of the points that concerns me - ...
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1answer
161 views

Were there socioeconomic reasons for the decline of Athenian democracy?

Historians often emphasize socioeconomic causes when describing the fall of the Roman republic, which began centuries before Augustus won the civil wars. For example, the sudden influx of wealth and ...

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