Historical Returns | Financial Bubbles

More From HBS

This section features specialized resources from Baker Library for historical investigation. Additional links connect to resources at Harvard Business School for further investigation into financial cycles, past and present.

Baker Library

Sunk in Lucre's Sordid Charms
Baker Library, Harvard Business School, 2005
An online guide to South Sea Bubble Resources in the Kress Collection at Baker Library. Provides a detailed index of the South Sea Bubble Collection, contextual information about the South Sea Bubble, and links to available digital content.
The Great Mirror of Folly (Het groote tafereel der dwaasheid): an Economic-Bibliographical Study
Arthur Harrison Cole, Baker Library, Harvard Business School, 1949
Publication No. 6 of the Kress Library of Business and Economics.
Provides background and bibliographic details about a remarkable Dutch volume of satirical writings and engravings that was produced in response to the speculative mania of 1720, particularly the South Sea Bubble in England and the Mississippi Bubble in France.
The South Sea Company: an Historical Essay and Bibliographical Finding List
John G. Sperling, Baker Library, Harvard Business School, 1962
Publication No. 17 of the Kress Library of Business and Economics. A bibliography of printed items from Kress Library, the British Museum, the Seligman Collection at Columbia University and Goldsmith's Library at the University of London. Introductory essay provides an in-depth history of the South Sea Company.
The Bancroft Collection
A part of the Kress Collection at Baker Library that focuses on the speculation mania, particularly the South Sea Bubble, that swept England and the Continent around 1720.
"The Damn'd South Sea: Britain's Greatest Financial Speculation and its Unhappy Ending, Documented in a Rich Harvard Collection"
Christopher Reed, Harvard Magazine, May-June 1999
When the Bubble burst: cautionary lessons from a spectacular investment boom—and bust. Article written about the Bancroft Collection at Baker Library.

Business History

Business History Home
HBS has integrated the study of history into its curriculum from its earliest days. Learn more about how history remains a vital part of HBS.
Business History Review
Explore this HBS publication, which is issued quarterly with the mission of encouraging and aiding the study of the evolution of business in all periods and in all countries.


Faculty and Research
Access information about HBS faculty research and publications.
Harvard Business School Publishing
Search the Harvard Business School Publishing website for current cases, books, and articles.