Estate Acts, 1600 to 1830: A New Source for British History

63 Pages Posted: 10 Oct 2008 Last revised: 1 May 2021

See all articles by Daniel E. Bogart

Daniel E. Bogart

University of California, Irvine - Department of Economics

Gary Richardson

University of California at Irvine; National Bureau of Economic Research

Date Written: October 2008

Abstract

A new database demonstrates that between 1600 and 1830, Parliament passed thousands of acts restructuring rights to real and equitable estates. These estate acts enabled individuals and families to sell, mortgage, lease, exchange, and improve land previously bound by landholding and inheritance laws. This essay provides a factual foundation for research on this important topic: the law and economics of property rights during the period preceding the Industrial Revolution. Tables present time-series, cross-sectional, and panel data that should serve as a foundation for empirical analysis. Preliminary analysis indicates ways in which this new evidence may shape our understanding of British economic and social history.

Suggested Citation

Bogart, Daniel E. and Richardson, Gary, Estate Acts, 1600 to 1830: A New Source for British History (October 2008). NBER Working Paper No. w14393, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1281885

Daniel E. Bogart

University of California, Irvine - Department of Economics ( email )

3151 Social Science Plaza
Irvine, CA 92697-5100
United States

Gary Richardson (Contact Author)

University of California at Irvine ( email )

3151 Social Science Plaza
Irvine, CA 92697-5100
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.socsci.uci.edu/~garyr/welcome.html

National Bureau of Economic Research ( email )

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Cambridge, MA 02138
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HOME PAGE: http://www.nber.org

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