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Income and its distribution in preindustrial Poland

Income and its distribution in preindustrial Poland This article presents per capita GDP and income distribution estimates for preindustrial Poland. It is based on a social table for the Voivodeship of Cracow in 1578. Our evidence indicates that income in Poland was distributed more equally than in contemporary Holland. However, the extraction rate was much higher than in the North Sea area. Furthermore, income inequality in the countryside of the Voivodeship was higher than inequality in Cracow. This can be explained by the demesne economy based on serfdom that was prevalent in agriculture. Using trends in real wages and urbanisation, we also project Polish GDP forwards and backwards in time. Our results indicate that Polish per capita GDP was below that of Western Europe as early as the fifteenth century. This gap persisted despite moderate growth of the Polish economy in the sixteenth century. In the seventeenth century, Poland impoverished and became even poorer than Asian economies for which similar estimates are available. Poland recovered slightly in the eighteenth century but continued to lag behind Western Europe. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Cliometrica Springer Journals

Income and its distribution in preindustrial Poland

Cliometrica , Volume 11 (3) – Oct 19, 2016

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References (88)

Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2016 by The Author(s)
Subject
Economics; Economic Theory/Quantitative Economics/Mathematical Methods; History, general; Econometrics; History of Economic Thought/Methodology
ISSN
1863-2505
eISSN
1863-2513
DOI
10.1007/s11698-016-0154-5
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This article presents per capita GDP and income distribution estimates for preindustrial Poland. It is based on a social table for the Voivodeship of Cracow in 1578. Our evidence indicates that income in Poland was distributed more equally than in contemporary Holland. However, the extraction rate was much higher than in the North Sea area. Furthermore, income inequality in the countryside of the Voivodeship was higher than inequality in Cracow. This can be explained by the demesne economy based on serfdom that was prevalent in agriculture. Using trends in real wages and urbanisation, we also project Polish GDP forwards and backwards in time. Our results indicate that Polish per capita GDP was below that of Western Europe as early as the fifteenth century. This gap persisted despite moderate growth of the Polish economy in the sixteenth century. In the seventeenth century, Poland impoverished and became even poorer than Asian economies for which similar estimates are available. Poland recovered slightly in the eighteenth century but continued to lag behind Western Europe.

Journal

CliometricaSpringer Journals

Published: Oct 19, 2016

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