Tag: Medieval Economics – General

Articles

Recycling in Britain after the Fall of Rome’s Metal Economy

In actual fact, the bulk of contemporary evidence — which happens to be material rather than textual — clearly argues that the people of fifth- and early sixth-century eastern Britain were much more involved in subsistence agriculture than warfare, and that most people during much of this period lived in highly circumscribed worlds in a ranked, rather than a steeply hierarchical, society

Articles

Rapid Invention, Slow Industrialization, and the Absent Entrepreneur in Medieval China

For some sixteen centuries, about eight times the length of the period since the onset of England’s Industrial Revolution, China was the source of an astonishing outpouring of inventions that included a vast variety of prospectively valuable novelties as diverse as printing, the blast furnace, the spinning wheel, the wheelbarrow, and playing cards, in addition to the more widely recognized gunpowder and compass.

1449 - Medieval Workshop - by Petrus Christus
Articles

Did Purchasing Power Parity Hold in Medieval Europe?

This paper employs a unique, hand-collected dataset of exchange rates for five major currencies (the lira of Barcelona, the pound sterling of England, the pond groot of Flanders, the florin of Florence and the livre tournois of France) to consider whether the law of one price and purchasing power parity held in Europe during the late fourteenth and early fifteenth centuries.

The Money Changer and his Wife (1490).
Articles

Measuring the Value of Things in the Middle Ages

The difficulty of understanding the value of things in the Middle Ages is one of the obstacles to our understanding of economic life in that era. The issue is first of all associated with the ways medievalists quantify and use numbers. Value was first investigated when studying prices in the 19th century, as a prerequisite to any knowledge of the economy.