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Chapter Summary

This front matter section of the book titled Pre-Modern European Economy: One Thousand Years (10th-19th Centuries) contains the Table of Contents, a list of figures and tables, the Acknowledgements and the Introduction. The most striking feature for the historian analysing the European economy of the millennium preceding modern growth is the simultaneous effect of contradictory forces: the forces of decline and the forces of growth. The forces of decline are to be found particularly in the rural world, where resources and techniques change slowly in relation to the increasing population, whereas the forces of growth, and their dynamic effects, prevail in the cities, in the shops and on the seas. The European pre-modern economy was a dualistic economy where, until about 1800, decreasing returns in agriculture were stronger than the increasing returns in industry and trade.

Keywords: forces of decline; forces of growth; pre-modern European economy



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