Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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Public finances
(3,444 words)

1. General remarks

State finances were a relatively late phenomenon in early modern Europe. In the Middle Ages, a prince was expected to use the income from his own crown lands to pay his necessary expenses (English to live off his own, French vivre du sien, Spanish conformare con lo suyo). Only in exceptional circumstances such as war was he allowed to levy taxes. For a long time, the distinction between the finance…

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't Hart, Marjolein, “Public finances”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 03 June 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_COM_027941>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20210107

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