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War, Taxes, and Borders:How Beer Created Belgium

Author

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  • Koen Deconinck
  • Johan F.M. Swinnen

Abstract

The present-day border between Belgium and the Netherlands traces back to the separation of the Low Countries after the Dutch Revolt (1566-1648) against Spanish rule. The capacity to finance war expenditures played a central role in the outcome of this conflict. Excise taxes on beer consumption were the single largest income source in Holland, the leading province of the Dutch Republic. Beer taxes thus played a crucial role in financing the Dutch Revolt which led to the separation of the Low Countries and, eventually, the creation of Belgium.

Suggested Citation

  • Koen Deconinck & Johan F.M. Swinnen, 2012. "War, Taxes, and Borders:How Beer Created Belgium," LICOS Discussion Papers 30812, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
  • Handle: RePEc:lic:licosd:30812
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    File URL: http://www.econ.kuleuven.be/licos/publications/dp/dp308.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Johan F.M.Swinnen & Liesbeth Colen, 2010. "Beer Drinking Nations. The Determinants of Global Beer Consumption," LICOS Discussion Papers 27010, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
    2. Damiaan Persyn & Johan F.M.Swinnen & Stijn Vanormelingen, 2010. "Belgian Beers : Where History meets Globalization," LICOS Discussion Papers 27110, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
    3. Lvarez-Nogal, Carlos & Prados De La Escosura, Leandro, 2007. "The decline of Spain (1500 1850): conjectural estimates," European Review of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 11(03), pages 319-366, December.
    4. Drelichman, Mauricio & Voth, Hans-Joachim, 2010. "The Sustainable Debts of Philip II: A Reconstruction of Castile's Fiscal Position, 1566–1596," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 70(04), pages 813-842, December.
    5. Swinnen, Johan F.M. (ed.), 2011. "The Economics of Beer," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199693801.
    6. Jan Luiten van Zanden & Bas van Leeuwen, 2011. "The Character of growth before 'modern economics growth'? The GDP of Holland between 1347 and 1807," Working Papers 0004, Utrecht University, Centre for Global Economic History.
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