Elites, Enterprise and the Making of the British Overseas by H. Bowen

By H. Bowen

This ebook examines the cultural, fiscal, and social forces that formed the improvement of the British empire within the eighteenth century. The empire is positioned in a large historiographical context educated through vital fresh paintings at the 'fiscal-military state', and 'gentlemanly capitalism'. this permits the empire to be obvious now not as a chain of discrete, unconnected nation-states scattered the world over, yet as a advertisement, cultural, and social physique with its roots very firmly planted in metropolitan society.

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These gains made by the Crown at the expense of European rivals were buttressed in the east by the fruits of successful military campaigns waged by the East India Company during the late 1750s and 1760s. Military conflict against the combined forces of the Mughal Emperor, the Wazir of Awadh and the NaWab of Bengal culminated in the Company's 24 Contexts and Contours victory over Indian forces at the battle of Buxar in 1764. This paved the way for the Treaty of Allahabad of September 1765 which saw the British assume near-sovereign authority over the Mughal provinces of Bengal, Bihar and Orissa.

18 28 Contexts and Contours This argument no longer seems so compelling, not least because the strength and potency of the French threat to British India during the second half of the century has been reassessed by historians. Yet, although this danger undoubtedly diminished after the end of the Seven Years' War, the spectre of a Bourbon resurgence in India was often uppermost in the minds of ministers, politicians and East India Company directors as they assessed Britain's military and strategic position in Asia.

59 A substantial, and growing, amount of The Dynamics of Expansion 39 unsold tea (17,755,000 lb which was worth £2,052,922 by 1772) lay in the Company's London warehouses. This represented 63 per cent of all the Company's unsold goods and concern about this deteriorating asset led to the ill-fated attempt to force the product onto the American colonists in 1773. 60 As those directing the Company's affairs fully recognized, there was little point in shipping huge quantities of goods half way around the world if they could not be sold.

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