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Free Trade and Liberal England 1846–1946$
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Anthony Howe

Print publication date: 1998

Print ISBN-13: 9780198201465

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198201465.001.0001

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The Cobdenite Moment and its Legacy

The Cobdenite Moment and its Legacy

(p.274) 8 The Cobdenite Moment and its Legacy
Free Trade and Liberal England 1846–1946

Anthony Howe

Oxford University Press

This chapter considers both the forms and the limits of the transmission of the 19th-century, primarily Cobdenite, tradition of free trade. That tradition was one that embraced a fiscal policy of low and few revenue-sharing tariffs, a political order that emphasized free trade as a popular right to cheap food combined with an avoidance of oppression by vested interests, and a foreign policy that strove for the lowest level of armaments expenditure consistent with national safety; an empire based on sentiment, and a predisposition to the promotion of international intercourse by trade, culture, and ‘goodwill’.

Keywords:   armaments expenditure, cheap food, Cobden, fiscal policy, foreign policy, international intercourse

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