Trade, Money, and the Grievances of the Commonwealth: Economic Debates in England during the Commercial Crisis of the Early 1620's
History of Economic Ideas, 2016, vol. 24, issue 1, 27-56
During the early 1620’s, a wide-ranging public debate took place in England in order to investigate the causes behind a commercial crisis that severely affected the kingdom. Using a wide array of primary sources, the paper shows that the disputes among Malynes, Misselden, Mun, and others within the context of this debate led to the consolidation of two opposing parties that adhered to radical, irreconcilable views about the workings of the English economy. Another important character in this story was Lord Treasurer Lionel Cranfield, who led the investigative proceedings while openly favoring the ‘balance of trade’ party. The well-known pamphlets written by these authors thus emerge simply as the last stage in a process that saw economic doctrines emerge out of public controversy and confrontations.
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