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Trade between Spain and the Habsburg Monarchy (1725-1815): Merchant Networks in the Mediterranean and the Atlantic


The research project investigates the integration of continental European regions into global exchange processes taking the Habsburg Monarchy’s trade with Spain in the 18th century as example. Therewith, this project contributes to a recent research trend which focuses on the entanglement of so-called “landlocked” European territories into maritime long-distance trade having been blinded out so far. This has a specific relevance with regard to the Habsburg Monarchy.
In the context of two different developmental paths both empires' economies took in the course of the transformations in the 18th century, the impact of bilateral trade on economic development will be highlighted by focusing on trans-national and trans-imperial merchant networks which connected different spaces and economic systems with each other. Connections between different merchants’ groups, the impact of family relations, the links with state institutions, i.e. lobbying, and production are conceived as explanatory factors of business performance and trans-regional entanglement.
Research focuses on those merchants who mediated Spanish-Habsburg trade at four port cities: Cádiz, Barcelona, Livorno and Trieste. The time span of the project sets in with the conclusion of the Treaty of Vienna in 1725 and ends after the termination of the Napoleonic Wars.
Methodologically, biographic, business and fiscal data will be collected in a database and processed by the Ucinet network analysis programme. The data derive from various sources, mainly from notary files stored at the provincial archives in Cádiz and Barcelona as well in the State Archives of Trieste and Florence. Further data are to be obtained from tax lists stored at the Archivo General de Indias in Seville and court files of the Catalan Commercial Court stored at the Archivo de la Corona de Aragón in Barcelona.

Call for proposal

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Carretera de utrera km 1
41013 Sevilla

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Sur Andalucía Sevilla
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Marta Mercado (Ms.)
EU contribution
No data