The Brandy Trade under the Ancien Regime: Regional Specialisation in the Charente

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This study of the brandy trade explores the origins, production and marketing of brandy from the Cognac region in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Professor Cullen shows that the brandy trade was based on a sophisticated regional economy, which, by 1720, had become a key component of French involvement in the modern international trading system. Notwithstanding competition from other cereals and from foreign markets, regional specialisation in the Charente was an indispensable element in ensuring the quality of stable output, and was recognised in the region's success in attracting foreign houses, such as Martell and Hennessy.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...a finely crafted monograph on an important topic." Thomas J. Schaeper, American Historical Review

"...fascinating study of the brandy trade....The material is enormously rich....this is a thoughtful book about an important topic. This book makes a real contribution to the subject." Thomas Brennan, Journal of Modern History

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521592482
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 3/28/1998
  • Pages: 259
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.67 (d)

Table of Contents

List of figures
List of abbreviations
1 The emergence of brandy spirits 1
2 Brandy and the French economy 47
3 Brandy: the distilling process, the product and the industry 63
4 Brandy production and internal trade in France 109
5 Competing markets: Parisian and foreign demand 145
6 The merchants of the brandy regions 166
7 The Cognac brandy trade: 1720s-1760s 187
8 External challenge in the 1760s: vicissitudes of old and new houses, 1762-1778 219
9 The brandy business in Bordeaux and Cognac in the 1780s 239
Sources 260
Bibliography 264
Index 275
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