Henry VII Revision - Economic + Trade

HideShow resource information
Preview of Henry VII Revision - Economic + Trade

First 473 words of the document:

Britain 1483 ­ 1529 Revision
Finance, Economy and Trade
Financial Management and the Wealth of the Crown:
Henry's government was all about having a stable and wealth crown. Henry needed
steady and secure income for 2 key purposes:
o To fund the ordinary and extraordinary expenses of government
o To continue his centralisation of power and discipline of the realm.
Henry had inherited a bankrupt throne and was always looking for ways to secure more
financial support and security.
For Henry power, the extension of power and money all went together. A sound
financial base was essential if Henry was to control both his people but more
especially the powerful nobility in England.
Henry also wanted to leave his successor a full treasury to ensure that he would have
the means to fight for his succession if necessary.
While Henry had a more modern approach to finance when compared to his
predecessors, he never fully solved the monarch's financial weakness.
At his death in 1509, Henry was solvent but he was not the wealthiest man in his
kingdom. The image of Henry VII as a financial `genius' came from the writings of Francis
Bacon in the C17th ­ and it stuck.
Solvency ­ ability to pay all debts, you have a positive balance, a surplus of money. Your
income covers your costs ­ was important but less important that the development of
administrative techniques that increased the power of the crown and, therefore
reduced the possibility of large scale rebellions.
As in other areas of government Henry appointed zealous agents, usually with legal
training to ensure revenue was collected. These agents benefited from Henry's
patronage gaining increased status and personal wealth.
The king carefully supervised their work, sometimes directly and at other times
through royal spies or informants.
One such agent was Sir Edward Belknap who was appointed the King's Prerogative. He
and his assistants worked on a commission basis to exact fines.
Henry VII has usually received much praise from historians with regards to his financial
Guy ­ "By European standards Henry VII's income was comparatively small".
Lockyer and Thrush ­ "During the period 1485-1509 the income for royal lands went up
by 45%".
Storey ­ "The reserves of the crown had without doubt been greatly augmented,
enabling the King to maintain his estate with splendour".
Vergil ­ "The people felt they were suffering not on account of their sins, but on
account of the greed of the monarch".
Pendrill ­ "Henry Vii exploited existing revenues in a more determined and systematic
way than his predecessors had".

Other pages in this set

Page 2

Preview of page 2

Here's a taster:

McGurk ­ "A full treasury helps to explain why he was so successful in quelling the
rebellions against him".
Exchequer and Chamber:
For a number of centuries the crown relied on the Exchequer to be its basis of
finance and so did Henry at the start of his reign due to his little experience until his
financial well-being worsened.
The Exchequer had 2 functions;
o To receive and pay out money
o To audit accounts.…read more

Page 3

Preview of page 3

Here's a taster:

If there was on heiress, the king had a right to agree to her marriage as
marriage dues.
o All tenants-in-chief were obliged to pay an aid to the king on the knighting of
his eldest son and marriage of his eldest daughter.
Counsel Learned in the Law and Sir John Hussey made great effort to chase these
profitable dues.…read more

Page 4

Preview of page 4

Here's a taster:

Henry VII had no economic policy but he was interested in any economic issues that
affected his personal wealth or the condition of the people.
Henry didn't have a common economic approach to farming but he did try to stop
rural depopulation by passing legislations to prevent it, as it could have caused a
negative effect on farming and the harvest.…read more

Page 5

Preview of page 5

Here's a taster:

In November 1485, Henry granted the titles master of Monies and keeper of Exchange in
the Tower to his trusted friends Sir Giles Daubeney. These titles were held under
indentures that set out the value and weight of these new coins in great detail.
Henry also introduced a shilling piece which was the first coin ever to have a true
portrait of the King.…read more

Page 6

Preview of page 6

Here's a taster:

Trade with France:
There was also inconsistency in England's trading with France; both countries used
trade as a bargaining chip in diplomatic relations.
Henry uses trade with France as a way of bettering his relationship with them.
In 1487, France imposed restrictions on trade after Henry backed Breton independence
against French ambitions.
In 1492 Henry uses the Treaty of Etaples to reduce trade restrictions as well as to gain a
steady source of income.…read more

Page 7

Preview of page 7

Here's a taster:

Henry passed the Navigation Acts in 1485 and 1489. These acts specified that English
ships and crew had to be used in certain trades, in an attempt to encourage English
shipping as chip building and to end dependency on foreign ships.
Henry tried to improve ship maintenance by paying for the construction of the first
dry dock at Portsmouth. These developments in the shipping industry were important as
English seamen were seeking to explore new lands.…read more


No comments have yet been made

Similar History resources:

See all History resources »See all resources »