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Tbe economic institutions which arose concurrently were also new-made sources of strength: banking, letters of credit, private property, interest, speculation and investment, representing needs and ideas which were almost wholly foreign to the traditional society of the countryside, and which were the accompaniment of an ever-widening trade. For the invitation to commercial expansion overseas was as strong in Europe's geography as the earlier invitation to trade among the lands surrounding the Baltic, Mediterranean, and North Seas.

The whole economical history of society is summed up in the movement of this ... separation between town and country'2. In distinguishing between European and Chinese civilisation, we must of course assume a complex multiplicity of causes, many of which may elude us, and many of which may have little or nothing to do with geography. The distinctions and the arguments which follow do not imply that this basic fact is disregarded, but they pursue the matter from a point of view which has frequently been neglected and which may be suggestive of important factors.

77-9. 15. C. H. HARING. The Spanish Empire in America, Oxford University Press, New York (1947), p. 163. 16. ' HARING. Op. , p. 165. 17. By 1606, 'all vendable offices were granted in perpetuity, with a right of resale or bequest within the holder's Iifetime on condition of paying, the first time a half, and thereafter a third part of their vaIue into the royal exchequer ... Municipal office thus became to all intents and purposes a piece of private property which passed freely by sale from one person to another, or between members of the same family, ...

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