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"The Edge of the World: A Cultural History of the North Sea and the Transformation of Europe
by Michael Pye" from 2014.

the 2nd last chapter is called Plague laws.
Plagues seem to happen every 100 years and it allowed them to build up govt, centralize control, control who did what work and control who could travel where..and 10-20 later they move the reserve currency.

goodreads.com/book/show/224880

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