IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/uam/wpapeh/200905.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Tax collection in Spain in the 18th century: the case of the “décima”

Author

Listed:
  • Fernández-de-Pinedo, Nadia

    () (Departamento de Análisis Económico (Teoría e Historia Económica). Universidad Autónoma de Madrid.)

Abstract

If we compare the Castilian fiscal system with English, French or Dutch, two basic differences are apparent: in one hand, in England, France and Holland the fiscal system was a mixture of indirect taxes and direct taxes and in the other hand, the financial revolution had been carried out in the 16th century in Castilia (central Spain), when for different reasons national short-term debt was turned into juros - or long-term debt. But the Dutch Republic in the 16th century and England by the end of 17th century and the beginning of 18th century were able to finance wars thanks to an efficient financial revolution. Traditionally, wars have been the excuse to impose new taxes or to reorganize public funds in order to obtain greater economic resources for financing the deficit originated by the war. Since most of the monarchies’ tax expenses stemmed from war, it is no surprise that the conflict known as the Jenkins´ Ear (1739) contributed to increase the deficit and fuelled a debate regarding a tax reform that would augment income and would be collected in a more egalitarian way. The Castilian tax system was based almost exclusively on indirect taxes. The taxation (alcabalas, millones, cientos, tobacco monopolies, customs…) of consumables ensured that whilst some taxes affected primarily rich consumers (for example tobacco), most taxes targeted the masses. Increasing the fiscal charge via indirect taxes seemed like an unfeasible and damaging option for trade and craftwork. This is the reason why there was an attempt to create a direct tax, similar to the Catalan cadastre. One of these attempts prior to the Marquis of the Ensenada’s cadastre was la décima. It was devised as a direct tax but its manner of collection ultimately depended on the willingness of the local cabildos.

Suggested Citation

  • Fernández-de-Pinedo, Nadia, 2009. "Tax collection in Spain in the 18th century: the case of the “décima”," Working Papers in Economic History 2009/05, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid (Spain), Department of Economic Analysis (Economic Theory and Economic History).
  • Handle: RePEc:uam:wpapeh:200905
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.uam.es/departamentos/economicas/analecon/especifica/mimeo2/wp_2009_05.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Taxation; Spain; Madrid; Indirect/Direct Taxes; 18th Century Tax Collection; War Expenses; Jenkin’s Ear War; The “Décima”;

    JEL classification:

    • N33 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • H71 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - State and Local Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:uam:wpapeh:200905. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Patricio Sáiz). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/dauames.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.