This title was first published in 2000. This is a history of the monetary developments in the international economy of the 19th century. It reviews the monetary developments in the core economies of the period: Britain, the United States, France, Germany, and also India. Particular attention is given to the expansion of the gold standard in the context of the intense national and international debates about the role of precious metals and the author also examines the conflict between supporters of gold, silver and bimetallism, both in terms of competing financial and economic theories and in terms of the varying social and cultural backgrounds that informed them. The main thrust of the work is that the sheer plurality of ideas and contexts helped to ensure the eventual victory of the gold standard, despite the inherent superiority of bimetallic systems.
.a helpful, thoughtful and often insightful study.' English Historical Review
Contents: Gold, silver and money; Britain’s golden heritage; France, bimetallism and standardization; India and the silver rupee; The United States: gold and silver in the Gilded Age; The spread of the gold standard and the defeat of bimetallism; The great monetary debate and the decline of bimetallism; Index.
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