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Income inequality in central Spain, 1690-1800

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  • Santiago-Caballero, Carlos

Abstract

This paper studies the evolution of income inequality in central Spain during the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, taking as case study the province of Guadalajara. The first part of the paper presents the sources and the dataset that was created to estimate income inequality using grain tithes. The second section shows that through the period grain represented the lion share of total income and therefore that it can be used as a reliable proxy. The following part of the paper introduces an analysis of income inequality in the province during the period 1690-1800 and concludes that inequality decreased during the last third of the eighteenth century. Finally the paper addresses this unexpected result and concludes that it was consequence of the success of the land reform carried out by the central government in the late 1760s. The reform was a success in Guadalajara, thanks to the characteristics of its population and the lack of bargaining power of pressure groups.

Suggested Citation

  • Santiago-Caballero, Carlos, 2011. "Income inequality in central Spain, 1690-1800," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 83-96, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:exehis:v:48:y:2011:i:1:p:83-96
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Steckel, Richard H. & Moehling, Carolyn M., 2001. "Rising Inequality: Trends In The Distribution Of Wealth In Industrializing New England," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 61(01), pages 160-183, March.
    2. Stanley L. Engerman & Kenneth Lee Sokoloff, 2002. "Factor Endowments, Inequality, and Paths of Development Among New World Economies," ECONOMIA JOURNAL, THE LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION - LACEA, vol. 0(Fall 2002), pages 41-110, August.
    3. O Rourke, Kevin H. & Williamson, Jeffrey G., 2002. "When did globalisation begin?," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 6(01), pages 23-50, April.
    4. Simpson, James, 1989. "La produccion agraria y el consumo español en el siglo XIX," Revista de Historia Económica, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(02), pages 355-388, September.
    5. O'Rourke, Kevin H., 1997. "The European Grain Invasion, 1870–1913," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 57(04), pages 775-801, December.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Esteban Nicolini & Fernando Ramos Palencia, 2016. "Comparing Income and Wealth Inequality in Pre-Industrial economies. Lessons from Spain in the 18th century," Working Papers 16.01, Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Department of Economics, Quantitative Methods and Economic History.
    2. Guido Alfani & Federico Tadei, 2017. "Income Inequality in Colonial Africa: Building Social Tables for Pre-Independence Central African Republic, Ivory Coast, and Senegal," Working Papers 594, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
    3. Jesús Gonzalo & Jean-Yves Pitarakis, 2013. "Estimation and inference in threshold type regime switching models," Chapters,in: Handbook of Research Methods and Applications in Empirical Macroeconomics, chapter 8, pages 189-205 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    4. Guido Alfani, 2017. "The rich in historical perspective: evidence for preindustrial Europe (ca. 1300–1800)," Cliometrica, Springer;Cliometric Society (Association Francaise de Cliométrie), vol. 11(3), pages 321-348, September.
    5. Esteban A. Nicolini & Fernando Ramos Palencia, 2016. "Decomposing income inequality in a backward pre-industrial economy: Old Castile (Spain) in the middle of the eighteenth century," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 69(3), pages 747-772, August.
    6. Guido Alfani & Elena Roberta Frigeni, 2013. "Inequality (un)perceived: The emergence of a discourse on economic inequality from the Middle Ages to the Age of Revolutions," Working Papers 058, "Carlo F. Dondena" Centre for Research on Social Dynamics (DONDENA), Università Commerciale Luigi Bocconi.
    7. Alfani, Guido & Ryckbosch, Wouter, 2016. "Growing apart in early modern Europe? A comparison of inequality trends in Italy and the Low Countries, 1500–1800," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 143-153.
    8. Carlos álvarez-Nogal & Leandro Prados de la Escosura & Carlos Santiago-Caballero, 2015. "Agriculture in Europe's Little Divergence: The Case of Spain," Working Papers 0080, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).
    9. Guido Alfani & Francesco Ammannati, 2014. "Economic inequality and poverty in the very long run: The case of the Florentine State," Working Papers 070, "Carlo F. Dondena" Centre for Research on Social Dynamics (DONDENA), Università Commerciale Luigi Bocconi.
    10. Santiago-Caballero, Carlos, 2012. "Provincial grain yields in Spain, 1750-2009," IFCS - Working Papers in Economic History.WH wp12-04, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Instituto Figuerola.
    11. Santiago-Caballero, Carlos, 2012. "Explaining wheat yields in eighteenth-century Spain," IFCS - Working Papers in Economic History.WH wp12-05, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid. Instituto Figuerola.
    12. Guido Alfani & Wouter Ryckbosch, 2015. "Was there a ‘Little Convergence’ in inequality? Italy and the Low Countries compared, ca. 1500-1800," Working Papers 557, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
    13. repec:spr:cliomt:v:11:y:2017:i:3:d:10.1007_s11698-016-0152-7 is not listed on IDEAS
    14. Wouter Ryckbosch, 2014. "Economic inequality and growth before the industrial revolution: A case study of the Low Countries (14th-19th centuries)," Working Papers 067, "Carlo F. Dondena" Centre for Research on Social Dynamics (DONDENA), Università Commerciale Luigi Bocconi.
    15. Marc Badia-Miro & Enric Tello, 2013. "An agency-oriented model to explain vine-growing specialization in the province of Barcelona (Catalonia, Spain) in the mid-nineteenth century," Working Papers in Economics 290, Universitat de Barcelona. Espai de Recerca en Economia.
    16. Esteban A. Nicolini & Fernando Ramos Palencia, 2016. "Comparing Income and Wealth Inequality in Pre-Industrial Economies: Lessons from 18th-Century Spain," Working Papers 0095, European Historical Economics Society (EHES).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Agrarian history Inequality Pressure groups Institutions;

    JEL classification:

    • Q15 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Land Ownership and Tenure; Land Reform; Land Use; Irrigation; Agriculture and Environment
    • O18 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure
    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
    • N53 - Economic History - - Agriculture, Natural Resources, Environment and Extractive Industries - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • N33 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement

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