Journal of European Economic History - 2022 issue 2

Volume LI

Bancaria Editrice
Prezzo Copertina € 50,00
IVA assolta dall'editore

Relations, Money, and Financial Skills to Fight an Attrition War. The Strozzi Brothers, Bankers and Commanders
The essay examines the contribution provided by Piero, Roberto and Leone Strozzi – sons of the wealthy Florentine banker Filippo Strozzi – to the French war effort in the last two decades of the Italian Wars. A contribution based on their military and diplomatic skills and on the availability of money, but also on their banking knowhow and on consolidated relationships with a widespread network of financiers. These tools were essential in a war of attrition – such as the one waged by the Valois against the Habsburgs for the hegemony in Europe and in the Mediterranean –, because they allowed the three anti-Medici Florentine exiles to quickly transfer financial resources to the Italian fronts, overcoming the physical distance that separated the king of France’s armies in the Peninsula and his fleets in the Mediterranean.
Swedish Copper and Financial Skullduggery in Amsterdam, 1610-1625
In 1611 the young Gustav Adolf Vasa ascended the throne of Sweden as Gustav II Adolf. Along with the throne, the king inherited a disastrous war with Denmark, which he ended by signing the onerous Peace of Knäred. The terms included the obligation for Sweden to pay a one million rixdaler reimbursement to redeem the strategically important fortress at Älvsborg. With an empty treasury, the king turned to his fellow Protestants in the United Provinces for financial assistance. Fortunately, Sweden possessed one major asset, the largest copper mine in Europe. The crown sent copper ingots to Amsterdam, for security, and borrowed against them. This sparked an intense rivalry as two factions of royal servants in the Netherlands sought to obtain the lucrative monopoly for the sale of copper. On one side there was Louis de Geer, a successful weapons dealer. His faction was defended by F.W. Dahlgren whose twentieth-century biography of the merchant was commissioned by de Geer’s descendent, Baron Louis de Geer. The rival faction included a distinguished nobleman and member of the States General, Hugo Muys van Holy who promptly mounted a viscous smear campaign against de Geer and his partner. This rivalry quickly descended into accusations of treason and corruption.
Between Medina del Campo and Rome. A Journey of Money in the Sixteenth Century
During the early modern age, shaping the mechanisms and guarantees of financial and commercial transactions was the basis for the expansion of commercial markets: the beginning of market globalization was due not only to the discovery of a new continent and new trade routes, but also to the manner of being in contact with these new territories and of including them economically and financially in a perspective of political development. The credit instruments were an important tool and the Catholic monarchy was at the forefront of the use of the most appropriate instruments to implement a system of control and domination at a political and financial- economic level.1 This article investigates an episode – the refusal of the Colegio de Santa María de los Ángeles de la Universidad de Salamanca to pay the difference between old and new chamber ducats, generated in a payment made in Rome; this is a clear example of the complexities of the financial transactions made in Rome that were the result of benefits, concessions and graces of various kinds. The network of relations involved in the quarrel proves the ability of Antonio de Fonseca, a Portuguese banker living in Rome, who was to become an important financial asset in the Italian and curial environment for the Castillan banker Simón Ruiz. Viceversa, Simon Ruiz, too was an excellent contact for Fonseca who used him to find out what was happening within the Catholic
Women Credit Activities in a Rural Town in Bohemia in the 18th Century. The Case of Lidmila Löschová
The role of widows in the artisan-agrarian urban society in East-Central Europe was usually narrowed down to the position of provisional manager of the bequeathed property until a male heir reached adulthood. However, some individual stories show us that women often times were also very capable and active businesswomen. One of such individuals was Lidmila Löschová, the daughter of a suburban miller in the Czech royal town of Sušice. For her, marriage to a middle-class burgher meant a horizontal social shift from inhabitant of the suburbs to the urban middle class. Having been early widowed, she took up economic activities in which she by far surpassed not only her husband, but also her male counterparts operating in the same business branch. By skilfully trading grain, she became the most important grain handler both in town and in the entire surrounding region; she provided loans to both the urban and rural population and invested the acquired capital in properties which she then used for speculations, expa ding her assets even further. The inheritance file, which captures her activities and economic relationships, is the most extensive fascicle of its kind in the town archive and it is the best documentation of this remarkable woman’s extraordinary fate.
Review Articles
Us and Them. Reflections on Philippe Legrain’s Book on Immigration
Immigration is the great topic of globalization, and has become even more relevant during the current pandemic. If on one hand it is true that history has always been marked by massive human movements from one continent to another and from one nation to another – “migration is natural” as the author suggests – on the other hand recent globalization processes have significantly boosted migratory flows, highlighting some aspects that appear disruptive to public opinion around the world.
Book Reviews
On Barak
Powering Empire. How Coal Made the Middle East and Sparked Global Carbonization
Vittorio Caligiuri

Eduardo Basualdo (ed.)
Endeudar y Fugar: Un análisis de la historia económica argentina, de Martínez de Hoz a Macri
Marco Bertuccio

A.M. Carabelli
Keynes on Uncertainty and Tragic Happiness. Complexity and Expectations
Giorgio La Malfa

A. Fazio
L’inflazione in Germania nel 1918-1928 e la crisi mondiale del 1929
Paolo Savona

Valentina Favarò
Pratiche negoziali e reti di potere. Carmine Nicola Caracciolo tra Europa e America (1694-1725)
Vittoria Fiorelli

Luciano Maffi
Private Bankers in the Italian 19th Century. The Parodi of Genoa in the National and International Context
Giampaolo Conte

Daniela Manetti
La settima arte. Storia e personaggi dall’industria cinematografica italiana
Simone Misiani

David Todd
A Velvet Empire, French informal imperialism in the Nineteenth century
Giampaolo Conte

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