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La compra silenciosa. Arrendamientos, estabilidad y mejoras en la agricultura valenciana de regadío (1850-1930)


  • Samuel Garrido Herrero

    () (Universidad Jaume I de Castellón)

  • Salvador Calatayud Giner

    () (Universidad de Valencia)


In the 19th century, Eastern Spanish “huertas” witnessed a dramatic growth and intensification of their output, which was achieved by means of an agrarian development model based on a peasant economy and the cash renting of small plots. This paper looks at characteristics and longrun implications of that model. On the one hand, tenants were able throughout the second half of the century to remain on their farms for an increasingly longer period, and often they were eventually reimbursed by the improvements they had introduced. Because of that, agrarian production increased and improved, what allowed landlords to obtain a higher rent. But, on the other, landlords lost capacity to control and manage the tenant holdings. As a result, tenant farmers consolidated their position, becoming first “semi-owners” of the land they cultivated and, very often, legal proprietors afterwards. KEY Classification-JEL: N53, Q15, R14

Suggested Citation

  • Samuel Garrido Herrero & Salvador Calatayud Giner, 2007. "La compra silenciosa. Arrendamientos, estabilidad y mejoras en la agricultura valenciana de regadío (1850-1930)," Investigaciones de Historia Económica (IHE) Journal of the Spanish Economic History Association, Asociacion Espa–ola de Historia Economica, vol. 8, pages 77-108.
  • Handle: RePEc:ahe:invest:v:8:y:2007:p:77-108

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Becker, Gary S, 1988. "Family Economics and Macro Behavior," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(1), pages 1-13, March.
    2. Samuel Bowles & Herbert Gintis, 2002. "The Inheritance of Inequality," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(3), pages 3-30, Summer.
    3. Solon, Gary, 1999. "Intergenerational mobility in the labor market," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 29, pages 1761-1800 Elsevier.
    4. Clark, Gregory & Hamilton, Gillian, 2006. "Survival of the Richest: The Malthusian Mechanism in Pre-Industrial England," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 66(03), pages 707-736, September.
    5. Gary S. Becker & Nigel Tomes, 1994. "Human Capital and the Rise and Fall of Families," NBER Chapters,in: Human Capital: A Theoretical and Empirical Analysis with Special Reference to Education (3rd Edition), pages 257-298 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. E.A. Wasson, 1998. "The Penetration of New Wealth into the English Governing Class from the Middle Ages to the First World War," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 51(1), pages 25-48, February.
    7. Clark, Gregory, 2008. "In defense of the Malthusian interpretation of history," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 12(02), pages 175-199, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Samuel Garrido, 2010. "Mejorar y quedarse. La cesión de tierra a rentas por debajo del equilibrio en la Valencia del siglo XIX," Documentos de Trabajo de la Sociedad Española de Historia Agraria 1009, Sociedad Española de Historia Agraria.

    More about this item


    Cash tenancy; Improvements; Agrarian contracts; Land ownership; Contemporary Spain;

    JEL classification:

    • N53 - Economic History - - Agriculture, Natural Resources, Environment and Extractive Industries - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • Q15 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Land Ownership and Tenure; Land Reform; Land Use; Irrigation; Agriculture and Environment
    • R14 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Land Use Patterns


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