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Answer.

The Tudor monarchy contributed to the development of mercantilism in Britain by developing and consolidating maritime technology. Maritime technology made it possible for the merchants to trade overseas with Africa and America thus the rise of mercantilism. The Tudor monarchy abandoned feudal elements and promoted capitalism, this led to the emergency of the merchant class. The merchant class conducted trade overseas which contributed to the rise of mercantilism. Sources of primitive accumulation of capital during mercantilism include:-

(a) Long distance trade: The capitalists obtained capital from the long distance trade that was conducted among various continents such as Africa, America and Asia. This was the Trans Atlantic slave trade. European countries acquired capital by accumulating precious metals such as gold and silver which was based on unequal exchange.

(b) Crusades: These wars were fought between the Muslims and the Christians from the 11 th to 12 th centuries. The Christians claimed that these were holly wars which aimed at the holly lands from the Arabs. It should be noted that the wars were accompanied with massive looting which formed the basis of primitive accumulation of capital.

(c) Confiscation of church property: The church in England controlled large estates of land but between 1535 and 1539 AD. King Henry VIII following the advice of his chief minister Thomas Cromwell decided to confiscate church property. The land was grabbed and sold to the capitalist; this capital was acquired by using primitive means.

(d) Feudal wars: The feudal wars were very common in Europe especially between 1337 and 1453 AD. There was the hundred year’s war between the French and the British monarchies. These wars were characterized with plundering and looting which help the European powers to accumulate capital that contributed to the rise of capitalism.

(e) Enclosure system: This system involved evicting peasants and serfs from their land. The land was sold to the capitalist who organized it into compact forms and enclosed it. The enclosure system contributed to the improvement of the agriculture sector which led to the rise of the industrial revolution, but the eviction of the peasants and serfs was a primitive act.

(f) Protectionist policies: Mercantilism was associated with protectionism especially in England which was the major power during the mercantile period. The Tudor monarchy introduced navigational acts that denied other countries from trading freely with England and her colonies. This aimed at protecting the British interests.

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