Dimensions: 12" x 12" x 5/8" ( mm x mm mm)
Weight: 15 oz. ( grams)
Advanced Metals & Materials
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Copyright Revolution Advanced Metals & Materials 2006
Banking offices were usually located near centers of trade, and in the late 17th century, the largest centers for commerce were the ports of Amsterdam , London , and Hamburg . Individuals could participate in the lucrative East India trade by purchasing bills of credit from these banks, but the price they received for commodities was dependent on the ships returning (which often did not happen on time) and on the cargo they carried (which often was not according to plan). The commodities market was very volatile for this reason, and also because of the many wars that led to cargo seizures and loss of ships.
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Although home to the wealthy and middling, cities tended to be even more unsavory places to live than the countryside. Exposed daily to dirty air and water, urban dwellers could expect to have a shorter life span than their country brethren. Louis-Sébastien Mercier, a writer who adored life in Paris and wrote extensively about all aspects of it, often lamented not only the poor health of city workers but also the strict conditions governing their employment. Guilds regulated almost every sector of the economy and thus limited the number who could enter a trade as an apprentice, become a journeyman, or set up a workshop and retail store as a master. With experience, a worker could theoretically move up the social hierarchy, but in practice such ascent was extremely difficult to achieve, as the limited number of masterships in any given industry tended to be passed down within a family. Thus in some trades and in some cities journeymen complained of feeling restricted and expressed greater solidarity toward their counterparts in other trades than toward their own masters.