The Rise of the European Economy: An Economic History of Continental Europe from the Fifteenth to the Eighteenth Century

By Hermann Kellenbenz; Gerhard Benecke | Go to book overview
Save to active project

III Production

I. AGRARIAN PRODUCTION

A. Farming and livestock

In general the agricultural economy remained at the level of barter, even where it was not limited simply to subsistence farming. The requirements of individual farm and the prevailing natural environment conditioned production. Direct taxation by landlords and government did not have a dynamic effect; instead it was a burden on the land which only encouraged conservative attitudes towards farming. The most important tax, the 'great tithe', was paid by the farmer in produce. Incentives to go over to a money economy were not lacking, however, and often the 'little tithe' and ground rent were paid in cash. Increased turnover of business with traders in the towns, especially in grain, wine and cattle, compelled a greater use of currency, if only for the sake of convenience. By the sixteenth century most central European agriculture produced some surplus. This had led to the development of a network of markets in the areas of both Gutswirtschaft (demesne farming) and Grundherrtschaft (tenant farming), particularly near large metropolitan centres where the growth of non-noble landownership was especially rapid and where, as in the lie de France around Paris, intensive market gardening was particularly profitable. Opportunities for more intensive exploitation of the land were even seized by foreign entrepreneurs. Farms in Schleswig-Holstein, for example, were financed by Dutchmen experienced in dairy farming and cheese-making for the export market.

The increased demand for grain in west Europe, Iberia and the Mediterranean area drastically affected the social structure of east European countries such as Poland, as has already been shown. The great increase in meat consumption in Germany,

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The Rise of the European Economy: An Economic History of Continental Europe from the Fifteenth to the Eighteenth Century
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 354

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?