The Black Death and its Economic Impact in Europe Quiz

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According to the Malthusian theory, how does per capita income change as population rises?

Per capita income falls

In the Malthusian model, what happens to birth rates with increasing per capita incomes?

Birth rates increase

What is the relationship between good harvests and death rates in the Malthusian theory?

Good harvests lead to fewer deaths

According to the pre-modern production function in the Malthusian theory, what happens to per capita income as population (L) rises?

Per capita income falls

What does the Malthusian trap refer to in the context of long-run equilibrium?

Population growth pushes per capita income to a subsistence level

What is the significance of the constant $0 < \alpha < 1$ in the pre-modern production function $Y = A\Lambda^\alpha L^{1-\alpha}$?

It represents constant scale returns and decreasing marginal returns

According to Malthusian theory, what determines the equilibrium income level in pre-industrial societies?

Positive checks and preventive checks

What did pre-industrial societies believe would increase per capita incomes?

Limiting births

According to Malthusian theory, what could increase per capita incomes in pre-industrial societies?

Anything deadly

What did recent research support across many pre-modern countries regarding economic theories?

Malthusian theory

What did Adam Smith's emphasis on division of labor allow for in pre-modern economies?

Output growth absent technological progress

According to the text, which factor caused a 41% GDP increase in Europe?

Sustained monetary injections

What was the primary export destination of England until the late C18th?

Mediterranean

What was the approximate percentage of West European GDP for three centuries represented by the Atlantic trade?

$1%$

What factor caused the Iberian tradables sector to become uncompetitive according to the text?

Dutch disease

Which event set the stage for the subsequent Industrial Revolution according to the text?

$High wages in Northwest Europe

Which factor made Iberian governments unresponsive to demands from local taxpayers?

American precious metals

What was the primary cause of real exchange rate appreciation in Iberian countries according to the text?

Inflation caused by Dutch disease

What was the approximate percentage of American imports of Spain until late C18th compared to West European GDP?

$1%$

What event caused a confluence of factors giving rise to the Little Divergence during which Northwest European incomes begin to rise?

Commercial Revolution and Smithian growth

What was the estimated mortality rate of the European population due to the Black Death?

1/3 to 1/2

What contributed to the decrease in labor supply and increase in wages after the Black Death?

High mortality rates

What effect did urbanization have on fertility rates in Northwest Europe after the Black Death?

Fertility rates fell due to cultural norms and institutions

What contributed to the 'Great Divergence' across Europe?

Tax revenues mainly spent on wars

What was the impact of the Black Death on marriage patterns in Northwest Europe?

Men and women married relatively late and often not at all

What led to a more persistent death rate effect from the Black Death in Europe compared to other parts of Eurasia and Africa?

Europe's urban infrastructure deficiencies and political fragmentation

What were the main factors contributing to the fall in birth rates in Northwest Europe after the Black Death?

Consensuality, labor market access, and inheritance systems

In the pre-modern production function $Y = A ext{Λ}^ ext{α} L^{1- ext{α}}$, what does the constant $0 < ext{α} < 1$ signify?

Constant scale returns and decreasing marginal returns

What is the impact of population growth on per capita income in the Malthusian model?

Population growth pushes per capita income down

According to the Malthusian theory, how does technological progress impact per capita incomes in pre-industrial societies?

It did not result in higher per capita incomes

What is the relationship between good harvests and death rates in the Malthusian theory?

Good harvests lead to fewer deaths

What was the primary focus of Adam Smith's emphasis on division of labor in pre-modern economies?

Output growth absent technological progress

What is the primary linkage between demographic and economic variables in Malthus' theory?

Birth rates and per capita incomes

In the Malthusian theory, what determines the equilibrium income level in pre-industrial societies?

Positive checks and preventive checks

What does the Little Divergence refer to?

The period during which Northwest European incomes begin to rise

What did recent research support across many pre-modern countries regarding economic theories?

The Malthusian theory

What does the Malthusian trap refer to in the context of long-run equilibrium?

The point at which population growth pushes per capita income down

What was the impact of economic efflorescences in the pre-modern world on per capita income gains?

Led to significant per capita income gains, but eventually disappeared under various disrupting events and Malthusian forces

What was Thomas Malthus' theory about birth rates and death rates with respect to per capita incomes?

Birth rates increase with rising per capita incomes while death rates decrease.

What was the significance of the constant $0 < \alpha < 1$ in the pre-modern production function $Y = A\Lambda^\alpha L^{1-\alpha}$?

It indicates the diminishing returns to labor as population increases

What led to output fluctuations in pre-modern economies according to Adam Smith's theory?

Learning-by-doing and decline in market size

What was the primary reason for the decrease in labor supply and increase in wages after the Black Death?

Higher demand for labor due to urbanization

What contributed to the 'Great Divergence' across Europe?

Institutions and cultural norms that allowed the Black Death to have a particularly persistent effect

What led to a more persistent death rate effect from the Black Death in Europe compared to other parts of Eurasia and Africa?

Institutions and cultural norms

What factor caused Northwest European birth rates to fall more than elsewhere after the Black Death?

Consensuality in marriage patterns

$Y = A ext{Λ}^α L^{1-α}$ represents which economic model?

Malthusian growth model

$25%$ to $40%$ fewer births than biologically possible after the Black Death is attributed to:

Consensuality in marriage patterns

What contributed to the Little Divergence during which Northwest European incomes begin to rise?

Intra-European trade intensification

What was the estimated percentage increase in Europe's GDP caused by sustained monetary injections?

41%

What factor contributed to the uncompetitiveness of the Iberian tradables sector according to the text?

Dutch disease

What did the institutional resource curse lead to in Spanish and Portuguese governments?

Unresponsiveness to demands from local taxpayers

What was the primary export destination of England until the late C18th according to the text?

Mediterranean

What event set the stage for the subsequent Industrial Revolution according to the text?

High wages in Northwest Europe

What is the significance of the constant $0 < \alpha < 1$ in the pre-modern production function $Y = A\Lambda^\alpha L^{1-\alpha}$?

$\alpha$ represents the share of output attributed to labor input

What was the approximate mortality rate of the European population due to the Black Death?

50-60%

What was the primary factor contributing to the decrease in labor supply and increase in wages after the Black Death?

Urbanization

What led to a more persistent death rate effect from the Black Death in Europe compared to other parts of Eurasia and Africa?

Political fragmentation

What contributed to the 'Great Divergence' across Europe?

Tax revenues

$25%$ to $40%$ fewer births than biologically possible after the Black Death is attributed to:

Late marriage and low marriage rates

What event caused a confluence of factors giving rise to the Little Divergence during which Northwest European incomes begin to rise?

Final pre-modern efflorescence

What was the primary export destination of England until the late C18th according to the text?

Iberian countries

What does the constant $0 < \alpha < 1$ signify in the pre-modern production function $Y = A\Lambda^\alpha L^{1-\alpha}$?

It signifies constant scale returns and decreasing marginal returns.

What is the primary linkage between demographic and economic variables in Malthus' theory?

Birth rates are linked to per capita incomes, and death rates are linked to harvest quality.

What does the Little Divergence refer to?

A period during which Northwest European incomes begin to rise.

What is the impact of population growth on per capita income in the Malthusian model?

Population growth pushes per capita income down, leading to a long-run equilibrium known as the Malthusian trap.

$25%$ to $40%$ fewer births than biologically possible after the Black Death is attributed to:

Decreased fertility due to social and economic factors.

What was the estimated percentage increase in Europe's GDP caused by sustained monetary injections?

$41%$

What contributed to the decrease in labor supply and increase in wages after the Black Death?

The significant reduction in population leading to labor scarcity.

According to Malthusian theory, how could pre-industrial societies increase per capita incomes?

By limiting births

What did recent research support across many pre-modern countries regarding Malthusian theory?

It supports the idea of equilibrium income level determined by birth and death rates

What did Adam Smith's emphasis on division of labor allow for in pre-modern economies?

Output growth absent technological progress

What was the impact of economic efflorescences in the pre-modern world on per capita income gains?

Led to significant per capita income gains

$Y = A ext{Λ}^α L^{1-α}$ represents which economic model?

$Y = A ext{Λ}^α L^{1-α}$ represents the pre-modern production function in the Malthusian theory

What was Thomas Malthus' theory about birth rates and death rates with respect to per capita incomes?

Increased death rate and decreased birth rate could determine equilibrium income level

What led to output fluctuations in pre-modern economies according to Adam Smith's theory?

Learning-by-doing and decline in market size

What was the impact of sustained monetary injections on Europe's GDP, according to Chen et al. (2022)?

Caused a 41% GDP increase in Europe

What was the primary reason for the uncompetitiveness of the Iberian tradables sector?

Inflation caused real exchange rate appreciation

Which theory attributes the rise of Northwest European incomes to a confluence of factors after the Black Death?

The Little Divergence theory

What was the approximate percentage of West European GDP represented by the Atlantic trade for three centuries?

$1 ext{%}$ of West European GDP for three centuries

What did recent research support regarding the economic history of humanity?

$99.9 ext{%}$ adheres to Malthusian model with temporary efflorescences due to Smithian growth or Malthusian growth

What did North and Thomas (1970) suggest about England's exports until late C18th?

$80 ext{%}$ of value of American imports of Spain until late C18th

What did Drelichman (2005) attribute to the unresponsiveness of Iberian governments to demands from local taxpayers?

Institutional resource curse: Spanish and Portuguese governments could rely on American precious metals for their revenues

What was the primary focus of Adam Smith's emphasis on division of labor in pre-modern economies?

Allowed for increased productivity and specialization leading to economic growth

What does the Little Divergence refer to?

A period during which Northwest European incomes begin to rise after the Black Death

Study Notes

The Black Death and the Origins of the ‘Great Divergence’ in Europe, 1300–1600

  • The Black Death killed 1/3 to 1/2 of the European population, leading to a decrease in labor supply and an increase in wages.
  • Urbanization led to higher demand for food and increased urban mortality, contributing to the spread of disease and higher mortality rates.
  • War and disease spread further increased mortality rates in early modern Europe.
  • Urbanization promoted tax revenues, mainly spent on wars, contributing to the 'Great Divergence' across Europe.
  • Europe's urban infrastructure deficiencies and political fragmentation led to a more persistent death rate effect from the Black Death compared to other parts of Eurasia and Africa.
  • After the Black Death, men and women in Northwest Europe married relatively late and often not at all, resulting in 25% to 40% fewer births than biologically possible.
  • Northwest European birth rates fell more than elsewhere due to factors such as consensuality, labor market access, and inheritance systems.
  • In Northwest Europe, institutions and cultural norms allowed the Black Death to have a particularly persistent effect, influencing urbanization and fertility rates.
  • The Black Death and the Little Divergence in Northwest Europe were influenced by the effects of urbanization and labor market opportunities on fertility.
  • The Dutch and English incomes rose again in the 16th and 17th centuries due to a final pre-modern efflorescence, following the Black Death.
  • In the early modern period, intra-European trade intensified, leading to the proliferation of institutional innovations and decreasing transaction costs for European market integration.
  • The Atlantic economy and imperialism contributed to the growth of Europe in the early modern period, leading to Smithian and Malthusian growth.

The Black Death and the Origins of the ‘Great Divergence’ in Europe, 1300–1600

  • The Black Death killed 1/3 to 1/2 of the European population, leading to a decrease in labor supply and an increase in wages.
  • Urbanization led to higher demand for food and increased urban mortality, contributing to the spread of disease and higher mortality rates.
  • War and disease spread further increased mortality rates in early modern Europe.
  • Urbanization promoted tax revenues, mainly spent on wars, contributing to the 'Great Divergence' across Europe.
  • Europe's urban infrastructure deficiencies and political fragmentation led to a more persistent death rate effect from the Black Death compared to other parts of Eurasia and Africa.
  • After the Black Death, men and women in Northwest Europe married relatively late and often not at all, resulting in 25% to 40% fewer births than biologically possible.
  • Northwest European birth rates fell more than elsewhere due to factors such as consensuality, labor market access, and inheritance systems.
  • In Northwest Europe, institutions and cultural norms allowed the Black Death to have a particularly persistent effect, influencing urbanization and fertility rates.
  • The Black Death and the Little Divergence in Northwest Europe were influenced by the effects of urbanization and labor market opportunities on fertility.
  • The Dutch and English incomes rose again in the 16th and 17th centuries due to a final pre-modern efflorescence, following the Black Death.
  • In the early modern period, intra-European trade intensified, leading to the proliferation of institutional innovations and decreasing transaction costs for European market integration.
  • The Atlantic economy and imperialism contributed to the growth of Europe in the early modern period, leading to Smithian and Malthusian growth.

Pre-Industrial Economic Theories and Growth Patterns

  • Malthusian theory: equilibrium income level determined by positive checks (increased death rate) and preventive checks (decreased birth rate)
  • Change in birth rate: pre-industrial societies could increase per capita incomes by limiting births
  • Change in death rate: anything deadly could increase per capita incomes in pre-industrial societies
  • Change in technology: technological progress did not result in higher per capita incomes in pre-industrial societies
  • Recent research supports the Malthusian theory across many pre-modern countries
  • Pre-modern efflorescences: historical periods of economic growth above subsistence levels
  • Economic growth in pre-modern economies: Adam Smith's emphasis on division of labor and David Ricardo's focus on international trade
  • Smithian growth: division of labor allows for output growth absent technological progress
  • Smithian growth: output fluctuations in pre-modern economies due to learning-by-doing and decline in market size
  • Pre-modern income fluctuated above subsistence level, according to Smith and Malthus
  • Example: Antique efflorescence in the Mediterranean Antiquity saw per capita incomes on the Italian peninsula rise up to 5x subsistence level
  • Economic efflorescences in the pre-modern world led to significant per capita income gains, but eventually disappeared under various disrupting events and Malthusian forces

Test your knowledge on the economic impact of the Black Death in Europe between 1300-1600. Explore how high death rates influenced labor supply, wages, urbanization, and trade during this period.

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