amsterdam

The Netherlands Seriously Does Not Want New Joint Debt

By the mid–fourteenth century, the cities of Brabant gained an economic edge on Flanders, due to the silting up of water routes to Bruges, the greater enterprise of Antwerp and British competitors with the Flemish woollen industry. In Flanders, output, marketing and production practices tended to be heavily regulated by guilds. Foreign trade was carried out by means of periodic fairs or “staple” arrangements which confined international transactions to distinct towns and gave privileged access to the consortium of German merchants in the Hanseatic League. Antwerp had a magnificent harbour at the mouth of the Scheldt, and a extra industrial,...