This chapter takes a long-run view on how preindustrial political economy conceptualized, regulated and designed markets in the age of capitalism’s ascendancy. Drawing on select treatises from the scholastics to later ordoliberalism, the chapter examines how people framed and configured market economy and capitalism over the longer run. Often these entailed a physical-spatial dimension, from the layout of market stalls to the hours of market access and trading times. Features of these long-gone political economies continued to shape European economic practices to the present day. And they helped achieve long-term economic growth.
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