Wars, Blockade, and Economic Change in Europe, 1792–1815

TitleWars, Blockade, and Economic Change in Europe, 1792–1815
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1964
AuthorsCrouzet, François
JournalJournal of Economic History
Pagination567 - 588
Date Published12/1964

The wars which raged almost continuously from 1792 to 1815 and which are generally, but not quite properly, called in English the Napoleonic Wars, are the longest period of warfare which Europe has known since the early eighteenth century, and as they took place at a crucial stage of economic development, when the Industrial Revolution had just taken off in England...Unlike the twentieth-century world wars, the Napoleonic Wars were not marked by large-scale physical destruction; though the productive potential of some towns or districts suffered from military operations or civil disturbances, such destruction was quite limited in space and time. On the other hand, most European countries suffered during the wars from bouts of paper-money inflation, which had undoubtedly serious consequences—especially in France during the Revolution...Also, the diversion of resources to military purposes and the heavy burden of taxation and exactions must not be underestimated.

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