Liviu's Reviews > Conquest, Tribute, and Trade: The Quest for Precious Metals and the Birth of Globalization

Conquest, Tribute, and Trade by Howard J. Erlichman
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's review
Nov 18, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: 2010_release_read, non-fiction, read_2010
Read in November, 2010

Very engaging and with great characters, the main problem i had with the book is that its purely materialistic focus ignores the mixed motivations of the players of the day, so the book reads very modern like the 16th century society was a mirror of today's modulo technology, so ultimately the book is very anachronistic in some respects.

Good as an overview of the momentous events from the 1490's to the early 1600's from a commercial perspective and showing well how the more-or-less cash based economies of the time ran against hard ceilings even with all the gold and silver plundered from the Americas and the fundamental reason is that resources cannot be leveraged at the levels pure credit can - of course even leveraging credit has a limit as recent events have shown, but even the primitive credit leveraging that started in England and Holland in the 17-18th centuries allowed for example England to fight and defeat the much bigger and richer to start France in the global war from 1685 to 1815, while the Habsburgs just went bankrupt despite their huge plundered American wealth when trying to fight war after war from the 1510's to the 1600 and despite winning lots of them

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