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Tulip Mania (1636-1637)

By the 15th century, tulips were among the most prized flowers, growing in popularity due to the Ottoman Empire, under the reign of Suleiman the Magnificent. Tulips become hugely desirable due to the 7 years they take to properly cultivate. In seventeenth century Netherlands, an infection of tulip bulbs by a virus created varied patterns in the flowers that were much admired and valued, causing the price of tulips to inflate dramatically.

During the Dutch Golden Age, prices for some bulbs reached extraordinarily high levels and just prior to the collapse in 1637, some single tulip bulb contracts sold for more than 10 times the annual income of a skilled artisan. Tulip mania is generally considered to have been the first recorded financial bubble in history.

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