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: This concluding volume triumphantly completes Braudel's great trilogy on the social and economic history of the world from the Middle Ages to the Industrial Revolution. Following his highly praised The Structures of Everyday Life and The Wheels of Commerce (winner of the 1983 Los Angeles Times Book Award for History), Braudel now charts the growth of the world economy from the fifteenth to the eighteenth century. Most of the usual matter of history - politics, wars, dynastic rivalries, conflict of religious beliefs and secular ideologies - is left out. What is rendered here with the eye and brush of a master is the human activity that underlies the business of life: the bustle of the market, the calm of the great manipulators of capital, the labor of the slave, the peasant and the factory worker of the early industrial age; the fashions of the rich, the rise of the great cities and financial centers - Genoa, Venice, Amsterdam, London - and the character and development of the trade routes that nourish them; the movements of population, the ebb and flow of wealth, the slide into poverty and decay. The sharply drawn, freshly colored glimpses of individual lives and fortunes that compose this vast moving tapestry reflect the extraordinary vivacity of a historian whose reach of mind is matched by his power to put history under the microscope. The visual impact of his work is not confined to the writing. Maps and graphics are used with characteristic skill to illuminate a point or to demonstrate an argument. The text is profusely illustrated with contemporary prints and drawings from around the world. The translator, Sian Reynolds, who won the Scott-Moncrieff Prize for her rendering of Volume II (The Wheels of Commerce), has once again reproduced in English the speed, vigor, and ease of a great stylist.