intervention to a greater extent than Cobden cared to admit. The cotton industry had developed within a system of protection against Asian textiles, and its markets in Asia were secured by Britain's ability to shape trade policy in India. Cobden supported free trade as a means towards international peace and understanding, as the benefits of comparative advantage increased prosperity; it would, he hoped, lead to a reduction in expenditure on the armed forces. However, British hegemony in trade and the liberal economy of the nineteenth century were political creations as a result of investment in war and empire in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Free trade was, at least in part, the result of the success of the 'fiscal-military state'.
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Publication information: Book title: Progress and Poverty:An Economic and Social History of Britain, 1700-1850. Contributors: M. J. Daunton - Author. Publisher: Oxford University Press. Place of publication: Oxford. Publication year: 1995. Page number: 557.
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