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Medieval money

Posted: Tue Sep 25, 2007 6:31 pm
by KJ
It occurs to me that I don't know the medieval money system as well as I should. People often ask me to explain medieval money, and I just have to reply that's it's not my speciality, but I really would love to know it well. I'd also love to be able to give them some relative pricing information to people of what things were worth roughly, such as the price of a loaf of bread. Something they can relate to modern day. Perhaps also how much various people would earn a day/week/year. In particular with the 15th C in mind. Also not just English money but other countries like France or Italy. I got asked the other day when the first one pound notes appeared. Stuff like that.

It's something I intend to research this off season for next but thought I'd start by asking here as people have given some really helpful advice in the past. Any suggested books, museums or websites much appreciated.

If I find any interesting info I can post it back up here if anyone's interested?

Many thanks.

Karen x

Posted: Tue Sep 25, 2007 6:45 pm
by Fox
Try PMing Dave the Moneyer (username: davetmoneyer).

He is probably the countries leading expert on all things muddy-evil and coiny.

He's even made coins for the Royal Mint.

Posted: Tue Sep 25, 2007 6:51 pm
by KJ
Thanks Fox. I've tried going on his website tonight but it seems to be down.

Posted: Tue Sep 25, 2007 7:26 pm
by Dave B
Fox wrote:Try PMing Dave the Moneyer (username: davetmoneyer).

He is probably the countries leading expert on all things muddy-evil and coiny.

He's even made coins for the Royal Mint.


Actualy, IIRC, this came up before and Dave posted an excellent potted history of english currency. Try having a search

Posted: Tue Sep 25, 2007 9:08 pm
by Type16
I think this may be of interest
http://www.finds.org.uk/medievalcoins/values.php

and, nearly forgot, the Medieval Source Book
http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/m ... rices.html

Posted: Wed Sep 26, 2007 9:18 am
by davetmoneyer
Hi to save searching through reems of info I have bumped the posting in friends & Goss
regards

Posted: Wed Sep 26, 2007 2:53 pm
by Marcus Woodhouse
As used in numerous schools i have worked at (even asked dave if he minded me).

Posted: Wed Sep 26, 2007 4:50 pm
by nathan
Dave B wrote:Actualy, IIRC, this came up before and Dave posted an excellent potted history of english currency. Try having a search


It's here http://livinghistory.co.uk/forums/viewtopic.php?t=6321

Posted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 2:10 pm
by KJ
Ooh, fantastically useful and interesting, thanks for that chaps. Read through all the previous post now. Found G23bs question and the answer particularly interesting as I'd always wondered about that. Have printed it all off to keep for posterity.

Many thanks all.

Karen

Posted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 2:17 pm
by KJ
Dave, can you confirm your website please, it doesn't seem to be working for me, I wonder if I've got an old web address. Ta.

Karen

Posted: Thu Sep 27, 2007 2:42 pm
by davetmoneyer
Hi Website down at the mo will be up and running again soon
any questions/orders please PM me or see me at the NLHF

Posted: Tue Oct 02, 2007 12:48 pm
by Colin Middleton
I'll back up that Dave's potted history of all things coiny is what you want for the coins themselvs. I'd say your starting point is:

12d to the shilling, 20 shillings to the pound.
2 pints of beer cost a farthing (quarter penny). (from Jim the Potter)

Also:
A knight should have an income of at least £40 to maintain his lifestyle (Origins od the English Gentleman).

A survay of Oxford servants in the laster 15th C (I think) turned up servants being paid between 3 and 20 shillings a year (plus livery and maintenance).

Good hunting...

Posted: Tue Oct 02, 2007 1:18 pm
by KJ
Thanks Colin.

Been re-reading through the links everyone sent again, so useful, already learnt a lot and I'm finding it quite interesting.

I also found this book on my bookshelf I'd forgotten about, something my dad had bought years ago:

'Economic and social history of medieval europe' by Henri Pirenne. No ISBN on the book. Quite dry in places but full of interesting money related info. Has an interesting section on money. There's a paperback version going quiet cheap on amazon for anyone else who's interested.

Thanks again all.

Karen