Was Philip II to blame for Spain's financial issues Free essay! Download now
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Was Philip II to blame for Spain's financial issues
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| Words: 1088 | Submitted: 02-Feb-2013
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DescriptionThe essay discusses Philip's role within Spain's finances as well as other contributing factors that caused financial decline
Was Philip II to blame for the financial problems in Spain
These four passages provide us with very varied opinions on whether Philip was to blame. When looking at the opinions expressed in the first passage it seems as though both sides can be argued whilst Straddling and Jago seem to defend Philip; Brice tends to lean towards a more neutral attitude.
All the sources refer to Philips foreign policy, most notably the Spanish Armada of 1588. The fault of the Armada seems to be placed on Philip combined with the view that the war was unnecessary particularly when the average revenue spent on it was 10 million ducats a year, around 90 percent of Spain’s income. Extracts B and C mention and support this notion, whilst Katherine Brice seems to discuss Foreign policy on a general level. Even though Philip is portrayed as being untrustworthy in the newsletter, by refusing to pay back his loans as well as claiming that he never owed them, and demanding they owed him; he did manage to gain ‘great profit’ out of the gold and silver. However one could argue how desperate Philip became, particularly towards the end of his reign when he often attempted any shortcuts or means possible of gaining money.
A key argument that has been put forward by various historians is that Philip often spent recklessly and unnecessarily when it wasn’t required to do so. A prime example of this would be the Spanish Armada but to a greater extent civil war with the Netherlands which was far more taxing. It is widely agreed that Philip was to blame for these financial pressures as he allowed the war to drag on endlessly. The result of his so called financial failures is that 80 million ducats were spent between 1667 and 1598. Brice therefore argues that the only possible way in which Philip could resolve the matter was by allowing a prolonged period of peace during which Spain would be able to rebuild it’s economy. Henry Kamen also explains how when each new theatre of war opened up, expenses mounted. As argued by Charles Jargo it was inevitable that such a big empire would always be in the condition of war, as a result many conflicts cannot be solely blamed on Philip one example being the attack against the ottoman empire who were threatening the Mediterranean (something Spain ruled the majority of). One of Philips chief administers argued that Spain and its empire had been targeted by all.
R.A Straddling argues that Philip had many recurrent expenses of a non-defense nature: e.g. the annual payment of dividend on state bonds and in ...
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