National Debt (Empire: Total War)
Etw enlightenment national debt
Prerequisite Separation of Powers
Research Points Needed
Building Needed Classical University
Leads To None
Stream Philosophy
  • -5% Upkeep costs for all army units
  • -5% Upkeep costs for all naval units
  • +8 Coins per turn to town wealth in the region
  • Enhances National Prestige
National Debt is a Technology in Empire: Total War.


The idea that a state can, like an individual, borrow money against future (tax) income.

Kings have always run up debts, borrowing money (sometimes at sword's point) from subjects and great banking houses. The debt, however, was the personal responsibility of the king. Eventually, his credit would run out. The concept of national debt allows a nation to borrow to finance expansion and conquest. Wars can be financed by issuing bills and bonds, and to be repaid - probably - from taxation.

Scottish economist, gambler and rake John Law (1671-1729) made several advances in his field, his most notable being the introduction of the French national bank. He also proposed state control over national finances and trade. As a result, the state used all national profits to pay off national debt. Eventually, his schemes collapsed but in the process he gave the Western world bank notes and the word "millionaire".

National debt could also be a dangerous thing, for government officials. When the share trading of the "South Sea Bubble" spectacularly failed in 1720, government creditors were out of pocket because they had been paid off in shares. The Chancellor of the Exchequer, John Aislabie, was imprisoned in the Tower of London for his incompetence.

General InformationEdit

Empire: Total War Technology
Philosophy Abolition of SlaveryCitizenshipClassical EconomicsEmpiricismFree Trade DoctrineGovernment by ConsentJoint Stock CompaniesNational DebtPhysiocracyRights of ManSecular HumanismSeparation of PowersSocial ContractUtilitarianismWealth of Nations
Military AirgunsCadenced MarchingCanister ShotCarbinesCarcass ShotCarronadesCopper BottomsDiamond FormationEuropean DoctrineExplosive RocketsExplosive ShellsFire and AdvanceFire by RankFlintlock CannonsImproved CopperingImproved Grape ShotImproved GrenadesLight Infantry DoctrineLime Juice and SauerkrautLongitude WatchMachined RiflingMilitary SyllabusNaval Architecture AdvancesNaval Shore FacilitiesNew Model Bayonet DrillPercussion CapPercussion ShellsPlatoon FiringPlug BayonetQuicklime ShellsReformed Naval AdministrationReorganised ProcurementRifled CannonsRing BayonetScrew BreechSeasoningSextantSheet Lead CartridgesShortened CarbinesShrapnel ShotSocket BayonetSquare FormationTop GallantsWedge Formation
Industrial Advanced IrrigationBasic Steam PumpCoke Blast FurnaceCommon Land EnclosuresDivision of LabourFlying ShuttleFour-Field Crop RotationImproved Animal HusbandryMachine ToolsMass ProductionMeasuring ToolsPower LoomPuddling FurnacePunch-Card LoomSeed Planting DrillSelective BreedingSpinning JennySpinning MuleSteam EngineSteam-Pumped Land DrainageThreshing Machine
Warpath Campaign Mystic Call of the WildDreamwalkingRiding the WindsSpirit MedicineSpirit of the Forest
Warpath Campaign Military Ambush TacticsCannon CastingGun DealingImproved IronworkingIronworkingPowder MakingSharp ShootingWinter Clothes
Warpath Campaign Economy and Culture Improved FarmingImproved FishingMoney EconomyWritten LanguageHunting Techniques

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