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The Rise of the English Shipping Industry in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries$
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Ralph Davis

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780986497384

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9780986497384.001.0001

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War and the Shipping Industry

War and the Shipping Industry

(p.303) Chapter 15 War and the Shipping Industry
The Rise of the English Shipping Industry in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries

Ralph Davis

Liverpool University Press

This chapter considers the financial impact of war on British shipping during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. It attempts to discern the number of merchant ship losses during the Anglo-Spanish War, Anglo-French War, Seven Years’ War, and the Dutch Wars by scrutinising Admiralty records of loss estimates. It examines privateering activity; wartime insurance rates; the rise in seafaring wages; naval impressment; the disruption to trade cycles; the hiring of ships by the government; and a contrast of tonnage rates between periods of peace and war to determine the financial cost of war to the shipping industry. It concludes that though war made many demands of the merchant shipping industry, merchants and shipowners knew that successful campaigns would lead to the expansion of a British shipping monopoly, and so deemed war financially worthwhile in the long run.

Keywords:   Maritime Warfare, Anglo-Spanish War, Anglo-French War, Dutch Wars, Royal Navy, Privateering, Maritime Wages, Naval Impressment

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