Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

"Tulip Fever", or the History of the First Financial Pyramid

Financial pyramids, from which many Russians suffered at the end of the past and the beginning of this century, the phenomenon is far from new. One of the first such pyramids originated in the distant XVI century and led to the ruin of the whole country - Holland.

Painting by Jan Bruegel (Ml.) - Tulipmania (1640)1

In 1593, Carolus Clusius, head of the garden of medicinal herbs of Emperor Maximilian II, planted several tulip bulbs in the land of the botanical garden of the University of Leiden. The following year, flowers appeared that determined the whole future fate of Holland.2

Like most other ornamental plants, the tulip came to Europe from the Middle East. But the tulip had one interesting feature. Beautiful flowers of one or another color grew from its bulbs, and after a few years it suddenly changed: stripes appeared on the petals, each time in different shades. It is now known that this is the result of a viral disease of tulips.But then it looked like a miracle. If a diamond trader had to buy a new diamond for big money and cut it in a new way, then the owner of a single tulip bulb could become the owner of a new, unique variety, which already cost several orders more on the tulip market.

In 1612, the Florilegium catalog was published in Amsterdam with drawings of 100 varieties of tulips. For example, the bulb of the tulip shown in the figure cost, depending on the size, from 3,000 to 4,200 florins.
Many European royal courts became interested in the new symbol of prosperity. Tulips jumped in price. In 1623, the onion of a rare variety Semper Augustus, in high demand, cost a thousand florins, and at the height of the tulip boom in 1634-1636, up to 4,600 florins were paid for it. For comparison: a pig cost 30 florins, and a cow costs 100 florins.
The second cause of the tulip boom was the cholera epidemic of 1633-1635. Due to the high mortality rate in the Netherlands, there was a shortage of manpower, so salaries rose. The simple Dutch had extra money, and, looking at the tulip madness of the rich, they began to invest in their own tulip business.

Clusius literally infected the Dutch with his passion for tulips. The country began insanity, complete madness, later called “tulipmania” by historians. For more than 20 years, the Dutch managed to grow dozens of tulip varieties.
In 1625, an onion of a rare tulip variety could already cost 2000 gold florins. Their trade was organized on the exchanges of Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Haarlem and Leiden. The volume of the tulip exchange has reached an astronomical amount of 40 million florins.
By 1635, the price had risen to 5,500 gold per bulb, and by the beginning of 1637 the price of tulips had increased 25 times. One onion was given as a dowry to the bride, three cost the same as a good house, and only one onion of the Tulip brasserie was given for a thriving brewery. Bulb sellers made huge money. All conversations and deals revolved around a single subject - the bulbs.
For example, a bulb of a red tulip with white veins cost 10,000 florins, and Rembrandt was paid 1800 for his painting “Night Watch”, which made him very happy.
A documented record was a deal of 100,000 florins for 40 tulip bulbs.In order to attract poor people, sellers began to take small advances in cash, and the buyer’s property was used as collateral for the remaining amount. For example, the price of a Viceroy tulip bulb was 2 louda (2.25 cubic meters) of wheat, 4 louda of rye, 4 fat cows, 8 fat pigs, 12 fat sheep, 2 fur of wine, 4 barrels of beer, 2 barrels of oil, 1000 pounds of cheese, a bed, a wardrobe with clothes and a silver cup "- all good for 2500 florins. The artist Jan van Goyen paid ten bulbs to the Hague burgomaster for an advance of 1900 florins, offered a picture of Solomon van Ruysdal as a pledge of the remaining amount, and also pledged to write his own.
Tulip fever spawned legends. One of them - about how the port tramp, seeing the ship entering the harbor, rushed to the office of its owner. The merchant, delighted with the news of the return of the long-awaited vessel, chose the fattest herring from the barrel and rewarded it with a ragged one. And when he saw an onion on the desk that looked like peeled onions, he decided that herring was good, but herring with onions was even better, put the onion in his pocket and left in an unknown direction. A few minutes later the merchant seized the tulip bulb Semper Augustus ("Eternal August"), for which he paid 3000 florins. When the tramp was found, he had already finished the herring with the onion.The poor fellow thundered into prison for embezzling private property on a particularly large scale.
Another apocryphal is about how Harlem tulip dealers heard about the Hague cobbler, who managed to bring a black tulip. A deportation from Haarlem visited a shoemaker and bought from him all the bulbs of a black tulip for 1500 florins. After that, right in front of an amateur tulip grower, harlemians rushed to furiously stomp the bulbs and calmed down, only turning them into mush. They were afraid that an unprecedented black tulip would undermine their well-established business. And the shoemaker did not endure barbarism, fell asleep and died.3

Many Dutch people quit their jobs and constantly played on the tulip market. In order to buy bulbs and resell at a higher price, houses and businesses were mortgaged. Sales and resale were made many times, while the bulbs were not even removed from the ground. The states doubled in moments, the poor became rich, the rich became super rich. Began to build the first financial pyramid, which would envy and Mavrodi. There was a tulip mafia stealing bulbs.
And on Tuesday, February 3, 1637, tulipomania in the Netherlands ended. Moreover, unexpectedly and for unknown reasons. The auction began with the sale of low-priced white crown bulbs at a price of 1,250 florins per lot. Yesterday there were many people willing to buy this lot for a much higher price, but today there were no buyers at all.
Sellers realized that all bulbs should be sold immediately, but there was no one. The terrible news spread through the city, and after a while, throughout the country. Prices have not only decreased - the tulip exchange at once ceased to exist. Bulb prices have dropped an average of a hundred times. Tens of thousands of people in a matter of hours went bankrupt and became beggars. A wave of suicides swept across the country.4

Many farms went under the hammer. Many poor people have become even poorer. And the Netherlands has long suffered from the effects of speculative fever. Dealers from London and Paris, where she managed to transfer, were also injured. Tulips from the "securities" again turned into just flowers, the object of pleasing the eyes of passersby and guests.

Related news

  • Atlantis - Antarctica
  • Holy simplicity
  • A thousand and one nights - a grand falsification
  • Maternity and women'
  • Private soap factories: a selection of sites
  • Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid

    Tulip fever, or the history of the first financial pyramid