In the 1500s there were few universities. Those that existed taught religion, Latin, Greek, philosophy, history, and mathematics. No economics. Then came the Enlightenment (about 1700) in which reasoning replaced God as the explanation of why things were the way they were. Pre-Enlightenment thinkers would answer the question, “Why am I poor?” with, “Because God wills it.” Enlightenment scholars looked for a different explanation. “Because of the nature of land ownership” is one answer they found.