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SCEMS Visiting Speaker Series: Dr Claudio Marsilio
March 5, 2015 @ 4:15 pm - 6:00 pmFree
FOR KING, FOR COMMONWEALTH, OR FOR PROFIT? Genoese and Portuguese bankers and Spanish silver in 17th century England
Location: Jessop West, Seminar Room 4
During the 16th and 17th centuries, the public credit market of the Spanish Empire used Genoese and Portuguese bankers as intermediaries. The asiento was a typical form of short-term borrowing which paid high rates of interest reimbursed in silver (both bullion and coins), which could be sold not only to private economic agents but also to public mints all over Europe. The precious metal was delivered from the principal Spanish Mediterranean ports (Barcelona, Cartagena, Dénia, and Alicante) to the port of Genoa. In some odd cases, usually linked to war or difficulties in the international credit market, the Genoese financial operators also used private galleys to bring silver to Liguria. The new peace treaty with England (1630) encouraged an unexpected new commercial opportunity for the Genoese and Portuguese bankers.
In ‘For King, for Commonwealth, or for profit’, Dr Marsilio will trace the shifting transactions, asking who were the English participants in a new sector of silver trade and what were its goals.
DR CLAUDIO MARSILIO is a FCT Postdoctoral Fellow based at the Universidade Técnica de Lisboa (Lisbon – Portugal) and a specialist in the economic and financial history of Early Modern Europe.