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Great Inflation provoked a variety of responses wherever it hit:•Eastern Europe: second serfdom•land became more valuable because people could sell their crops in the West for more than they could locally, so serfdom was reimposed.•Western Europe: solution to Great Inflation was set of ideas that would later become capitalism•accelerated commercial revolution19
Friday, September 23, 2016•4 changes took place in Western Europe: •1) new political units began to emerge - absolutist monarchies maintained order, guaranteed commercial credit•Dutch republic - run by merchants•2) exploration & imperialism - to find new sources of wealth and cut out middlemen•1496 - Portuguese explorer by Vasco de Gama found out that you could get to Spice Islands by water to bypass Ottoman and Safavid middlemen (don’t pay customs)•3) new technologies•4) new economic policies - mercantilism•capitulations - clauses in treaties that Europeans had with Ottomans & Safavids - guaranteed that European merchants would pay lower customs and have special privileges (trade privileges) in the empire•good for Europeans - allowed them to export more•good for Ottomans - allowed them to get stuff and align themselves with certain European powers against other European powers•Ottomans & Safavids:•debased the currency (mixing gold and silver and copper with cheaper metals) (coins become worth less, accelerates inflation)•took patronage out of military patronage state. Timar/tiyul were previously allowed to keep harvest from land in return for providing a service.•They began to sell the right to collect taxes from land - tax farming - created a layer of intermediaries that enriched themselves at the expense of the government•this practice brought down the quality of agriculture•implemented new ways of recruited and paying bureaucrats: sold offices to highest bidder instead of giving offices to most qualified•allowed janissaries (soldiers from Balkans - infantry) to take jobs•quality of Ottoman fighting force began to fall•As a result of 16th century crisis and commercial revolution, we moved from a world of world empires into a world economy•all of history from antiquity into the 16th century and a bit beyond is a history of empires•3 characteristics:•1) it was possible for several world empires to exist at the exact same time - world was politically and economically fragmented•each world empire provided for the needs of the people who lived within it independent from other world empires - division of labor within the empire•each world empire was fundamentally the same as other empires existing at the same time•if any empire was economically or technologically better than another, it would swallow it up•2) expanded politically (by treaty) and militarily (or by battle)•3) •history thereafter is a history of world economies•world economy was a single economic system built upon the division of a single world market20