This book explores the relationship between international trade and domestic economic growth in Britain since the eighteenth century. It was during this time that Britain enjoyed first a dominant role in world trade and then, from the outbreak of the First World War, saw its economic strength eclipsed by other emerging international powers. The essays here focus on two central concerns in the history of British economic development in the period; was overseas and colonial trade in the eighteenth century the principal motor of British industrial development? Has the structure of Britain's overseas trade in the twentieth century been one of the factors contributing to the "decline of the British industrial economy"?
Peter Mathis is former Master of Downing College, Cambridge and Chichele Professor of Economic History in Oxford.
John A. Davis holds the Emiliana Pasca Noether Chair in Modern Italian History at the University of Connecticut.