Corruption, Party, and Government in Britain, 1702-1713 by Aaron Graham

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By Aaron Graham

Corruption, get together, and executive in Britain, 1702-1713 offers an cutting edge and unique reinterpretation of country formation in eighteenth-century Britain, reconceptualising it as a political and essentially partisan approach. Focussing at the offer of cash to the military throughout the conflict of the Spanish Succession (1702-13), it demonstrates that public officers confronted a number of incompatible calls for, yet that political partisanship helped to prioritise them, and to hammer out settlements that embodied a model of the nationwide curiosity. those judgements have been then transmitted to brokers in in another country via a mix of own incentives and partisan loyalties which equipped belief and became those casual networks into tools of public coverage.

However, the method of establishing belief and delivering money laid officers and brokers open to accusations of embezzlement, fraud and monetary misappropriation. specifically, even supposing successive monetary officers ran entrepreneurial deepest monetary ventures that enabled the military out of the country to prevent risky monetary shortfalls, they discovered it essential to disguise the prices and dangers by way of receiving unlawful 'gratifications' from the regiments. Reconstructing those transactions intimately, Corruption, occasion, and executive in Britain, 1702-1713 demonstrates that those corrupt funds complex the general public carrier, and therefore that 'corruption' used to be as a lot a dispute over ends as means.

Ultimately, this quantity demonstrates that nation formation in eighteenth-century Britain was once a contested technique of curiosity aggregation, during which universal partisan goals helped to barter compromises among numerous irreconcilable public priorities and personal pursuits, in the frameworks supplied by way of formal associations, after which collaboratively imposed via overlapping and intersecting networks of formal and casual brokers.

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W. Sheppard, Local government in St Marylebone, 1688–1835: a study of the Vestry and the Turnpike Trust (London, 1958) Andrew M. Coleby, Central government and the localities: Hampshire, 1649–1689 (Cambridge, 1987); P. J. Norrey, ‘The Restoration regime in action: the relationship between central and local government in Dorset, Somerset & Wiltshire, 1660–1678’, Historical Journal, 31 (1988) pp. 789–812; Perry Gauci, Politics and society in Great Yarmouth, 1660–1722 (Oxford, 1996). Aside from these works though, the overall operation of the fiscal-military state at a local level for much of the eighteenth century has not been well served by the existing literature.

Provided that this could be carefully managed, so as to include those of importance or exclude deadweights who would have done more The British Fiscal-Military States, 1660–1830 31 harm than good, it could mobilize a far greater range of resources for the service of the state. This suggests, in other words, another way to understand the formation of the British fiscal-military state during the long eighteenth century. Although institutions were clearly not unimportant, their importance lay more in their wider role within society than their specific forms and structures, which could be adapted or even circumvented when the public service seemed to require it.

The British Fiscal-Military States, 1660–1830 27 of public money’, while court parties by contrast were usually willing to use every means at their disposal to advance the national interest. 110 Ultimately, as the final chapter will suggest, Whig and Tory ministries between 1660 and 1760 often showed few qualms about reorientating the same state structures their opponents had used for their own ends, and thus country rhetoric probably more often reflected a principled disquiet at the ends of administration rather than a deep-seated opposition to its means.

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