Overseas Trade and Traders: Essays on some Commercial, Financial and Political Challenges Facing British Atlantic Merchants, 1660–1775, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Overseas Trade and Traders

Essays on some Commercial, Financial and Political Challenges Facing British Atlantic Merchants, 1660–1775, 1st Edition

By Jacob M. Price


312 pages

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Hardback: 9780860785910
pub: 1996-12-28
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In this third volume of collected papers, Jacob Price explores the structural and political relations of the Atlantic trade in the 18th century. A first selection on mercantile activity, blends research on the records of individual firms with aggregate customs data to show that definitive advantages of scale encouraged the concentration of trade into fewer and larger hands in sectors like tobacco, sugar and slaves. These studies also show the importance of credit to the development of trade, a theme taken up in the section on monetary issues, reprinting the author's well-known paper on multilateralism with a specifically written supplement ’Multilateralism Revisited’. A final section on the politics of customs reform gives the contemporary political background to the records which Price has explored so thoroughly.


regarding all three volumes by Price: 'All the essays in these three volumes bear the badge of Price’s scholarship. The research behind them is meticulous- broad in scope, profound in depth, complete…In these three volumes we have selections from the beginnings of a life’s work, a report from the first half-century, a hint of what is yet to come.They constitute a landmark of scholarship produced by the model scholar..’' Economic History Review, Vol. LI 'Overseas Trade and Traders is a useful, reasonably priced volume for British economic, political, and social historians. Scholars will appreciate the breadth of Price’s work over forty years, as the articles and essays provide an excellent sample of the development of his research interests as they relate to seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Britain. Moreover, the volume nicely balances republication of Price’s more well-known and accessible publications..with equally important essays found in collections and journals perhaps more obscure to British historians.' Albion, Vol. 30, No. 2 'The most distinguished historian of early modern British imperial overseas trade of this or any earlier generation, Jacob. M. Price has long been known as a historical essayist par excellence. Distinguished by their solidarity, careful and imaginative analysis of data, precision of argument, attention to context, and lucid prose style, his essays have served two generations of early modern British overseas historians as a model of what an essay should be and how it can shed new light upon a field. For that reason, as well as because of the defining importance of many of the essays in several areas of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century imperial history, these three volumes of Price’s collected essays are an especially welcome addition to the proliferating literature on the early modern British world…one has to applaud the press for undertaking a project of this scope and scholarly importance.' The International

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction; Colonial trade and British economic development, 1660-1775; What did merchants do? Reflections on British overseas trade, 1660-1790; The great Quaker business families of 18th-century London: the rise and fall of a sectarian patriciate; English Quaker merchants and the war at sea, 1689-1783; Directions for the conduct of a merchant’s counting house, 1766; Multilateralism and/or bilateralism: the settling of British trade balances with ’the North’, ca. 1700; Multilateralism revisited: a further note on the settlement of British trade balances with ’the North’, ca. 1660-1760; The Bank of England’s discount activity and the merchants of London, 1694-1773; Glasgow, the tobacco trade, and the Scottish customs, 1707-1730; The exicse affair revisited: the administrative and colonial dimensions of a parliamentary crisis; Index.

About the Series

Variorum Collected Studies

The first title in the Variorum Collected Studies series was published in 1970. Since then well over 1000 titles have appeared in the series, and it has established a well-earned international reputation for the publication of key research across a whole range of subjects within the fields of history.

The history of the medieval world remains central to the series, with Byzantine studies a particular speciality, but the range of titles extends from Hellenistic philosophy and the history of the Roman empire and early Christianity, through the Renaissance and Reformation, up to the 20th century. Islamic Studies forms another major strand as do the histories of science, technology and medicine.

Each title in the Variorum Collected Studies series brings together for the first time a selection of articles by a leading authority on a particular subject. These studies are reprinted from a vast range of learned journals, Festschrifts and conference proceedings. They make available research that is scattered, even inaccessible in all but the largest and most specialized libraries. With a new introduction and index, and often with new notes and previously unpublished material, they constitute an essential resource. 

For further information about contributing to the series please contact Michael Greenwood at [email protected]

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / General