In the year 1779, under Carlos III, hostilities would begin between Spain (allied with France) and Great Britain, in relation to the independence of their American colonies (the future United States), supported by the Bourbon monarchies.
Immediately the Spanish government. Chaired de facto although not de jure (the figure of Prime Minister did not yet exist) by the Count of Floridablanca, he prepared to face the expenses of the contest, which were considerable and came to ruin the Royal Treasury, this war being a of the causes of the Spanish decadence that began to be noticed in the reign of Carlos IV.
The obligatory question is: Where did the money for the military expenses of the two most important campaigns of that war on the Mediterranean front come from, those of Gibraltar and Menorca, if we take into account that the Treasury was in chaos and the taxes (the called provincial rents) were scarce and difficult to collect?
At that time, the so-called “Five Major Guilds of Madrid” played an important role in the state economy, providing the Monarchy with loans and receiving in exchange certain very lucrative monopolies.