What Are the Effects of the Commercial Revolution?

The Commercial Revolution is responsible for the creation of private banking, a money economy, trading organizations, and the development of European feudal monarchies into national states. The Commercial Revolution spanned nearly 400 years, from the late 14th century to the middle of the 18th century.

The Commercial Revolution gave birth to the practice of mercantilism, and started the expansion of commercial trade. With the expansion of commerce, there came improvements in navigation and exploration, as European nations looked to increase the size and power of their empires through commerce and conquest.

The English expanded their merchant and naval fleets as they gained control of Spanish and Italian markets, and created new markets in the Indian Ocean and South Asian Sea. The Dutch merchant empire peaked and then declined during the Commercial Revolution. The Dutch East India Company took over Portuguese trading posts across the globe to dominate the Indian Ocean spice trade and then lost dominance to the British a century later.

The effects of the Commercial Revolution led Europe and England into the Industrial Revolution by creating the financial and economic structure that was necessary to accommodate the remarkable growth of industry that defined Western culture during the 19th and 20th centuries.