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dc.contributor.authorGRAFE, Regina
dc.identifier.citationNicolas BARREYRE and Nicolas DELALANDE (eds), A world of public debts : a political history, Cham : Palgrave Macmillan, 2020, pp. 5-35en
dc.description.abstractPublic debt is a fundamental part of the fiscal viability of any complex polity. In the early modern period, small city states, larger territorial states, and the largest overseas empire of the western hemisphere, the early modern Españas (Spains), needed access to credit for at least two reasons. First, revenue and expenditure streams do not follow the same cycle. Prior to the late nineteenth century, military spending was by far the largest item of expenditure. It was also particularly uneven. Money needed to be available up-front when campaigns started. Armies, whether regular, militia, or mercenaries, stopped fighting and started looting if their masters were too far behind on pay. Revenues, on the other hand, tended to flow in steadily over the year, and even if they came in as lump sum payments from tax farmers, those pay schedules hardly ever coincided with major expenditures. This was even more so in those fiscal regimes that relied overwhelmingly on trade and consumption taxes rather than direct land taxes as was the case in the early modern Spains.en
dc.publisherPalgrave Macmillanen
dc.titleAn empire of debts? : the Spanish Empire and its colonial realmen
dc.typeContribution to booken

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