Age of Industrialisation (C10)

"Even before factories began to dot the landscape in England and Europe, there was large-scale industrial production for an international market in the country side." Elucidate.


  1. In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, merchants from the towns in Europe began moving to the countryside, supplying money to peasants and artisans, persuading them to produce for an international market.

  2. With the expansion of world trade and the acquisition of colonies in different parts of the world, the demand for goods began growing. But merchants could not expand production within towns because here urban crafts and trade guilds were powerful.

  3. These were associations of producers that trained craftspeople, maintained control over production, regulated competition and prices, and restricted the entry of new people into the trade.

  4. Rulers granted different guilds the monopoly right to produce and trade in specific products. It was therefore difficult for new merchants to set up business in towns.

  5. So they turned to the countryside. In the countryside poor peasants and artisans who had lost their common lands began working for merchants and produced goods and indirectly served the international market.