Pre-Modern European Economy

One Thousand Years (10th-19th Centuries)


The book deals with the characters and evolution of the European economy from the high Middle Ages until the start of modern growth in the 19th century. Europe is always set in a global context and the European specific features are analysed on the background of the world economy.

The main aim of the book is to present a clear picture of the structure and organisation of the European pre-modern economy, specifying its features, institutions, constraints and differences with other traditional coeval economies. The path followed starts from the demographic characters, the techniques, the sectors (agriculture, trade, industry), the output, and continues with the demand side (consumption, investment, public expense). The last chapter recalls the main features of the pre-modern economy in a more formal way.
The book is the only available work dealing with the formation of the European economy and its features over the long term, that is from the 10th until the 19th century.

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EUR €156.00USD $210.00

Biographical Note

Paolo Malanima graduated from the University of Pisa and Scuola Nornale Superiore. He has been Professor of Economic History at the University of Pisa, and of Economic History and Economics at the University Magna Graecia in Catanzaro. He published on Italian and European economic History. He is now Director of the Institute of Studies in Mediterranean Societies (ISSM-CNR).

Table of contents

I Population
1. World population
2. The European population
3. The demographic model
4. The death rate
5. The birth rate
6. The demographic transition
7. Conclusion

II Energy
1. Energy systems
2. Fuel
3. Animals
4. Water and wind power
5. Climate and the biomass
6. The energy transition
7. Conclusion

III Agriculture
1. Men and lands
2. Three agricultural ecosystems
3. Peasant economies
4. The village and the manor
5. Land productivity and labour productivity
6. Conclusion

IV Trade
1. Seas
2. Rivers, roads, fairs, markets
3. Innovations in exchange
4. Conclusion

V Industry
1. Types of industry
2. From South towards North
3. Industrial technology and organisation
4. Urbanisation
5. Conclusion

VI Output
1. Prices and agricultural incomes
2. Wages and productivity in industry
3. GDP
4. Conclusion

VII Demand
1. Consumption
2. Investment
3. Public expense
4. Conclusion

VIII Pre-modern economies
1. Past and present economies
2. A model of an agrarian economy
3. Distribution
4. A dualistic economy
5. The mature agrarian economy



All those interested in Economic History, History and Economics and especially students dealing with medieval, early Modern and Modern European economy and history in a global context.


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