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The Death Penalty as Monetary Policy: The Practice and Punishment of Monetary Crime, 1690-1830

The Death Penalty as Monetary Policy: The Practice and Punishment of Monetary Crime, 1690-1830 History of Political Economy 36:1 (2004) task he performed with great vigor and success.1 Considering the sense of urgency expressed in the pamphlet debates during the 1690s and the swiftness whereby the legal changes were made, we may infer that capital punishment was perceived as a crucially important instrument for the solidification of the currency. In fact, when we trace how the death penalty was applied to new forms of money manipulations during the eighteenth century, we are forced to recognize that the death penalty continued to play a rather central role throughout the formative stages of the modern monetary system. As such, this article challenges the notion, subscribed to by many economists, that the state’s role was limited to issuing money and adjusting the quantity in circulation. Indeed, the historical record forces us to expand the list of policy tools used by the state to administer the modern monetary mechanism to include the execution of those found guilty of tampering with the currency. This article begins by sketching the historical context of the economic turmoil in England during the 1690s. This is followed by a discussion of the 1695 currency crisis, an analysis of the pamphlet debates http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png History of Political Economy Duke University Press

The Death Penalty as Monetary Policy: The Practice and Punishment of Monetary Crime, 1690-1830

History of Political Economy , Volume 36 (1) – Mar 1, 2004

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Publisher
Duke University Press
Copyright
Copyright 2004 by Duke University Press
ISSN
0018-2702
eISSN
1527-1919
DOI
10.1215/00182702-36-1-131
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

History of Political Economy 36:1 (2004) task he performed with great vigor and success.1 Considering the sense of urgency expressed in the pamphlet debates during the 1690s and the swiftness whereby the legal changes were made, we may infer that capital punishment was perceived as a crucially important instrument for the solidification of the currency. In fact, when we trace how the death penalty was applied to new forms of money manipulations during the eighteenth century, we are forced to recognize that the death penalty continued to play a rather central role throughout the formative stages of the modern monetary system. As such, this article challenges the notion, subscribed to by many economists, that the state’s role was limited to issuing money and adjusting the quantity in circulation. Indeed, the historical record forces us to expand the list of policy tools used by the state to administer the modern monetary mechanism to include the execution of those found guilty of tampering with the currency. This article begins by sketching the historical context of the economic turmoil in England during the 1690s. This is followed by a discussion of the 1695 currency crisis, an analysis of the pamphlet debates

Journal

History of Political EconomyDuke University Press

Published: Mar 1, 2004

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