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Money and Credit in the Fifteenth Century: Some Lessons from Yorkshire

  • Jennifer I. Kermode (a1)


This article explores some of the methods used to raise credit in an important trading region of late medieval England during a decline in overseas trade and an international bullion famine. It argues that, because provincial credit arrangements depended on local as well as national factors, a combination of demographic and regional circumstances contributed to the commercial weakness of Yorkshire merchants as they faced growing competition from Londoners with access to more sophisticated financial networks.



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1 Postan, M. M., “Some Economic Evidence of Declining Population in the Later Middle Ages,” Economic History Review, 2d ser. 2 (1950): 221–46; Postan, , “Medieval Agrarian Society in Its Prime: England,” in Cambridge Economic History, 2d ed. (1966), 1: 560–70; Postan, , The Medieval Economy and Society: An Economic History of Britain, 1100–1500 (Cambridge, England, 1972), 27–40, 224–46; with Hatcher, J., “Population and Class Relations in Feudal Society,” Past & Present 78 (1978): 2437; Hatcher, , Plague, Population, and the English Economy, 1348–1530 (London, 1977).

2 Day, J., “The Great Bullion Famine of the Fifteenth Century,” Past & Present 79 (1978): 354; Munro, J. H., “Monetary Contraction and Industrial Change in the Late-Medieval Low Countries, 1335–1500,” in Coinage in the Low Countries, 880–1500, ed. Mayhew, N. J., British Archaeological Reports 54 (Oxford, 1979), 95137; “Bullion flows and monetary contraction in late-medieval England and the Low Countries,” in Precious Metals in the Later Medieval and Early Modern Worlds, ed. Richards, J. F. (Chapel Hill, N.C., 1983), 97158.

3 Miskimin, H. A., “Monetary Movements and Market Structure: Forces for Contraction in Fourteenth and Fifteenth Century England,” Journal of Economic History 24 (1964): 470–90; Lopez, R. S., Miskimin, H. A., and Udovitch, A. L., “England to Egypt, 1350–1500: Long-Term Trends and Long-Distance Trade,” in Studies in the Economic History of the Middle East, ed. Cook, M. A. (London, 1970), 93128.

4 Spufford, P., Money and Its Use in Medieval Europe (Cambridge, England, 1988), 339–62; Day, “Bullion Famine,” 3.

5 John Day has prepared chronologically parallel series for mint production, wages, food, and cloth prices and export trends for England, but most of his data for wages and prices are derived from the southeast. “Crises and Trends in the Late Middle Ages,” in The Medieval Market Economy, ed. Day, John (Oxford, 1987), 185224.

6 See Ruddock, A. A., “London Capitalists and the Decline of Southampton,” Economic History Review, 2d ser. 2 (19491950): 137–51, for a similar story.

7 Kermode, J. I., “Merchants, Overseas Trade, and Urban Decline: York, Beverley and Hull c. 1380–1500,” Northern History 23 (1987): 5173; Bolton, J. L., The Medieval English Economy, 1150–1500 (London, 1980), 247–51; Thomson, J. A. F., The Transformation of Medieval England, 1370–1529 (London, 1983), 48–49, 53–55, 57, 6061; Palliser, D. M., “A Crisis in English Towns? The Case of York, 1460–1640,” Northern History 14 (1978): 115.

8 For the regular use of London courts by aliens to enroll and pursue debts, see Thomas, A. H., ed., Calendar of Select Plea and Memoranda Rolls preserved among the Archives of the Corporation of the City of London [hereafter, Cal. Plea & Mem. Rolls City of London], esp. 1323–64 (Cambridge, England, 1926), 131, 217; 1413-37 (1953), 87; Postan, M. M., “Private Financial Instruments in Medieval England,” reprinted in Postan, Medieval Trade and Finance (Cambridge, England, 1973), 6263, for the role of London as a clearing center; Spufford, P., A Handbook of Medieval Exchange (London, 1986), xxxiii, for a list of places where bills of exchange could be purchased. London was the only English town included; bills could be bought there in 1350. For Italian financiers in London, see Fryde, E. B., “Italian Maritime Trade with Medieval England (c.1270–c.1530),” Recueils de la Société Jean Bodin 32 (1974): 322–25. For the Hanseatic war, see Postan, M. M., “The Economic and Political Relations of England and the Hanse from 1400–1475,” in Studies in English Trade in the Fifteenth Century, ed. Power, Eileen and Postan, M. M. (London, 1933).

9 “Everytime there was a breakdown in metallic money, everything and anything was pressed into service and paper money flowed or was invented.” Braudel, Fernand, Capitalism and Material Life, 1400–1800 (London, 1979 paper ed.), 361.

10 Postan, M. M., “Credit in Medieval Trade,” Economic History Review, 1st ser. 1 (19271928): 234–61; Postan, “Private Financial Instruments,” 29–64, esp. 34; Spufford, Handbook, xxxiii–xxxiv; Thomas, Cal. Plea & Mem. Rolls City of London, 1381–1412 (1932), xxxvi–xl.

11 Spufford, Handbook, xxxi–iii.

12 See Jenks, S., “Das Schreiberbuch des John Thorpe und der Hansische Handel in London 1457–9,” Hansische Geschichtsblatter 101 (1983): 67112, for Hanse credit operations in England. I am grateful to Wendy Childs and N. J. Alldridge for this reference.

13 Hanham, A., The Celys and Their World: An English Merchant Family of the Fifteenth Century (Cambridge, England, 1985), 188–92.

14 Postan, “Credit in Medieval Trade”; Postan, “Private Financial Instruments,” passim; Munro, J. H., “Bullionism and the Bill of Exchange in England, 1272–1663: A Study in Monetary Management and Popular Prejudice,” in The Dawn of Modern Banking, Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies (Berkeley, Calif., 1979), 169215, esp.198.

15 Hanham, The Celys and Their World, 398–405.

16 For example, in 1425 a Lombard merchant was licensed to pay off his £10 debt to Robert de Holme of York with a bill of exchange redeemable abroad. Calendar of Close Rolls preserved in the Public Record Office [hereafter CCR], 1429–35, 369, 371. See also Smit, H. J., ed., Bronnen tot de Geschiedenis van den Handel met Engelond, Schotland, en Ireland 1150–1485 (The Hague, 1928), 2: 1073–74. Cf. Cal. Plea & Mem. Rolls City of London, 1413–37, 11–12.

17 York City Record Office [hereafter, York CRO], E39, 110; York Borthwick Institute of Historical Research, Probate Register [hereafter Inst. Prob. Reg.], I, 20 (will of Ann Durem); Postan, “Private Financial Instruments,” 34.

18 Spufford, Handbook, xxviii–xxix; Spufford, Money and Its Use, 256–58, 394–95. See Clark, E., “Debt Litigation in a Late Medieval Vill,” in Pathways to Medieval Peasants, ed. Raftis, J. A. (Toronto, Ont., 1981), 247–79, for a discussion of rural local transactions.

19 Spufford, Money and Its Use, 376, for examples.

20 Hoppit, Julian, “The use and abuse of credit in eighteenth-century England,” in Business Life and Public Policy: Essays in Honour of D. C. Coleman, ed. McKendrick, Neil and Outhwaite, R. B. (London, 1986), 6466.

21 James, M. K., “A London Merchant in the Fourteenth Century,” Economic History Review, 2d ser. 8 (19551956): 364–76. See also Hanham, The Celys and Their World, 109–255, 398–430; Postan, “Credit in Medieval Trade,” 255–56, for the Celys and the London scrivener John Thorp's notebook, both demonstrating the importance of credit sales. Wolff, P., “English Cloth in Toulouse, 1380–1450,” Economic History Review, 2d ser. 2 (1950): 294.

22 Bennett, E. Z., “Debt and Credit in the Urban Economy: London 1380–1460” (Ph.D. diss., Yale University, 1989), 153. There were 378 actions in 1461–70, 447 in 1471–80, 106 in 1481–90 (5 years missing), 347 in 1491–1500 (Public Record Office [hereafter, PRO] C241/246–73); Day, Medieval Market Economy, 64. See also Britnell, R. H., Growth and Decline in Colchester, 1300–1525 (Cambridge, England, 1984), 100101. Statute Staple Certificates were writs issued by the chancellor on behalf of creditors trying to recover a debt registered under Statute Staple. See text at note 50.

23 Holdsworth, W. S., A History of English Law, 4th ed. (London, 1935), 3: 586–87. Such was the strength of the custom, that it prevailed over compassion in the London City court in 1396, when the payment of a debt took precedence over provision for two minors, even though complex legal formalities for their care had been completed. Cal. Plea & Mem. Rolls City of London, 1381–1412, 239.

24 York Borthwick Inst. Prob Reg. V, 501 (Grenely), VI, 70 (Collinson); York CRO E39, 187.

25 For example, Calendar of Patent Rolls preserved in the Public Record Office [hereafter, CPR], 1388–92, 259; 1476–85, 293; Sellars, M., ed., York Memorandum Book, I, Surtees Society 120 (1911): 33; Brown, W., ed., Yorkshire Deeds, II, Yorkshire Archaeological Society 50 (1914): 218; PRO Cl/59/112, 64/1137; York CRO E39, 266–67, 281.

26 Robert Northwold, mercer of London, died about 1374, leaving debts to be retrieved from Beverley, York, Ludlow, Oxford, Gloucester, Winchester, and from a Lombard. Cal. Plea & Mem. Rolls City of London, 1364–81, 168–69. A debt did not have to be large to be exploited. In 1369 a debt of £6 13s.4d. was assigned to “divers persons"; ibid., 111–12.

27 York Borthwick Inst. Prob. Reg. III, 403 (Alcock); York Minster Library, Dean & Chapter Wills II, 43 (Elwald); Raine, J., ed., Testamenta Eboracensia, III, Surtees Society 45 (1865): 49-50, 104, 141.

28 York Borthwick Inst. Prob. Reg. III, 255–255v. (Holme), 265–265v. (Louth). This was not an uncommon practice. Bennett, “Debt and Credit in the Urban Economy,” 200.

29 In about 1415 it cost John Talkan of York's executors £8 6s.8d. to collect his debts and settle his estate, which had a total value of about £104. In 1451 Thomas Vicars's executors spent only 20s. on tracing and collecting his debts, plus a further 20s. riding around to settle everything. Testamenta Eboracensia, III, 87–89, 120–22. Cf. Bristol merchant Philip Vale, whose executors' expenses for settling debts and selling property in 1393 came to £7. Cal. Plea & Mem. Rolls City of London, 1381–1412, 208–15.

30 Cal. Plea & Mem. Rolls City of London, 1413–37, 10; Memorandum Book, II, 160. While most Londoners’ actions against debtors defaulting under staple law commenced within one year, 39 percent of Colchester creditors waited for three years or longer. Bennett, “Debt and Credit in the Urban Economy,” 153–56; Britnell, Growth and Decline in Colchester, 251.

31 In the seven years before his death in 1397, Maghfeld's assets shrank by about 80 percent. James, “A London Merchant,” 369, 373–74.

32 For example, York Borthwick Inst. Prob. Reg. II, 21 (Stockton), 119v (Shackles); III, 415v–416 (Blackburn), 540 (Hill); V, 29v (Croule), 99 (Johnson), 167 (Ryddesdale).

33 Testamenta Eboracensia, III, 49–50.

34 See also Brompton, 1444, about £600, debts £200: Barley, 1468, £74, debts £53: Fisher, 1476, £13, debts £10. York Borthwick Inst. Prob. Reg. II, 86–90v (Brompton); II, 225 (Preston); IV, 60 (Barley); V, 8v (Fisher); Archival Register 18, 384v–385 (Frost). Cf. William Lynn, a London stapler, who left an estate worth £4,842 7s. 2d., of which £3,072 was in debts owed to him, while he owed £1,737 1s. 4d.: Postan, “Credit in Medieval Trade,” 255–56; and Richard Toky, 40 percent of whose estate comprised unrecoverable debts: Thrupp, Sylvia, The Merchant Class of Medieval London (Ann Arbor, Mich., 1962), 105.

35 We will never know how many agreements were concluded with a simple handshake like that “on the sands at Scarborough” in 1402 and another “in the churchyard” of St. Margaret's, Walmegate, York, in 1410. Verbal contracts were probably used for small local debts. York Borthwick Inst. Cause Papers, f. 23, 58. I am grateful to Jeremy Goldberg for these references.

36 Hull City Record Office [hereafter Hull CRO], Bench Books BRG; BRE1, 2; BRB1; York CRO E25, 39; Sellars, ed., York Memorandum Book, I and II, Surtees Society, 120, 125 (1911, 1914); J. W. Percy, ed., III, Surtees Society 186 (1973); Yorkshire Deeds and Feet of Fines for Yorkshire, Yorkshire Archaeological Society Record Series.

37 Unwin, G., “London Tradesmen and Their Creditors,” in Finance and Trade under Edward III, ed. Unwin, George (Manchester, England, 1918), 19; Kowaleski, M., “The Commercial Dominance of a Medieval Provincial Oligarchy: Exeter in the Late Fourteenth Century,” Medieval Studies 46 (1984): 369.

38 For example, Beardwood, A., ed., The Statute Merchant Roll of Coventry, 1392–1416, Dugdale Society 17 (1939); City of London Letter Books, Recognisance Rolls, Guildhall Library.

39 Memorandum Book, II, 98.

40 Helmholz, Richard H., “Usury and the Medieval English Church Courts,” Speculum 61 (1986): 365; Postan, “Private Financial Instruments,” 31.

41 In general the debt or loan was divided into equal portions and repaid at annual or six-month intervals. For example, Memorandum Book, II, 274; York CRO E39, 106, 108, 267.

42 Memorandum Book, II, 160. It may be that she was meeting obligations from her father's estate. For other examples see ibid., 96, 114; York CRO E39, 267 and cf. Cal. Plea & Mem. Rolls City of London, 1382–1412, 239.

43 Postan, “Private Financial Instruments,” 38.

44 York Borthwick Inst. Prob. Reg. IV, 116 (Wartre); VI, 185 (Stockdale); Memorandum Book, II, 13.

45 PRO C1/289/10.

46 Memorandum Book, I, 12–13.

47 For example, CPR 1429–35, 354; 1446–52, 198; 1452–61, 384, 456; 1467–77, 9, 431.

48 PRO C1/17/96, 64/439.

49 Cal. Plea & Mem. Rolls City of London, 1381–1412, xxxii–iii; Postan, “Private Financial Instruments, “ 40–49.

50 Hall, H., ed., Select Cases Concerning the Law Merchant, II, Selden Society 48 (1930): xiff.; III, Selden Society 49 (1932): xvi, xxviii, xxix; Plucknett, T. F. T., The Legislation of Edward I (Oxford, 1949), 138; CCR 1279–88, 244.

51 CCR 1279–88, 244; Cal. Plea & Mem. Rolls City of London, 1381–1412, xxxv.

52 There were about 6,000 cases brought under Statute Staple from 1390 to 1450; Bennett, “Debt and Credit in the Urban Economy,” 153. But the local courts in Exeter handled over 4,500 between 1378 and 1388, and those at Colchester between 200 and 300 a year in the fifteenth century. Kowaleski, “Fourteenth-Century Exeter,” 369; Britnell, Growth and Decline in Colchester, 281.

53 Hubert Hall thought that the volume of cases concerning enrolled obligations that were recorded in the Close and Patent Rolls, in the Miscellaneous Book of the Exchequer and in Kings and Commons Bench Plea Rolls suggested that statutory recognizances did not supersede traditional enrollments for the repayment of trade debts and loans. Hall, Select Cases, III, xiii.

54 CPR 1381–5, 87; Memorandum Book, II, 30; Hull CRO, D248.

55 Postan, “Credit in Medieval Trade,” 248–49.

56 A rare survival, a Bristol merchant's inventory, reveals that Philip Vale's real estate was sold for £322 8s. 4d. in 1393; his total estate, including debts, was approximately £757. Cal. Plea & Mem. Rolls City of London, 1381–1412, 213–15; Hilton, R. H., “Rent and Capital Formation in Feudal Society,” in Second International Conference of Economic History, Aix-en-Provence, 1962 (Paris, 1965), 6667.

57 Hoskins, W. G., “English Provincial Towns in the Sixteenth Century,” in Hoskins, , Provincial England (London, 1963), 7778; Hilton, R. H., “Some Problems of Urban Real Property in the Middle Ages,” in Socialism, Capitalism, and Economic Growth: Essays Presented to Maurice Dobb, ed. Feinstein, C. H. (Oxford, 1967), 331; Langton, J., “Late Medieval Gloucester: some data from a rental of 1455,” Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, n.s. 2, no. 2 (1977); 271.

58 Kermode, J., “The Merchants of York, Beverley and Hull in the 14th and 15th Centuries” (Ph.D. diss., University of Sheffield, 1990), 241–71. Property was also a constant element in Londoners’ wills between 1400 and 1459. Bennett, “Debt and Credit in the Urban Economy,” 196.

59 Thrupp, London Merchant Class, 122–23.

60 For examples of the same properties being resold repeatedly by merchants, see ibid., 127–28.

61 Investment in rent-charges or annuities was more common on the Continent. Hilton, “Problems of Urban Real Property,” 336–37; Baum, H-P., “Annuities in Late Medieval Hanse Towns,” Business History Review 59 (1985): 2448.

62 Unwin, “London Tradesmen,” 32; Thrupp, London Merchant Class, 122, 126.

63 E. A. Bond, ed., Chronica Monasterii de Melsa, III, Rolls Ser. (1868), 144–45; Baildon, W. Paley, ed., Yorkshire Fines, 1347–77, Yorkshire Archaeological Society 52 (1915): 64; M. J. Hebditch, ed., Yorkshire Deeds, IX, ibid. III (1948): 67; M. J. Stanley Price, ed., Yorkshire Deeds, X, ibid. 120 (1955): 139–40. See also Hull CRO, D126 and Cal. Plea & Mem. Rolls City of London, 1413–37, 142.

64 PRO C1/44/89; Yorkshire Fines, 1347–77, 64, 72. Statute Merchant bonds were also used in property transactions to ensure that seisin of a property was achieved, the bond becoming enforceable if the contract was not fulfilled, like the penalty clause in a modern conveyance. Thus when Hugh Swynflete conveyed a property in Hull to William Ryplingham, they entered a Statute Merchant bond, which was to lapse once “delivery of possession of the property” had been completed. Hull CRO, D301 and also D107; Memorandum Book, II, 45.

65 Thrupp, London Merchant Class, 122–23, estimated that when conditions were favorable in the fourteenth century, a return of 6–8 percent might be expected, falling to 5 percent in the fifteenth century.

66 London mercer William Causton built up a sizable rural estate by lending on the security of land and gaining from defaulters. Thrupp, London Merchant Class, 121.

67 Postan, “Private Financial Instruments,” 31; Hall, Select Cases, III, xxix.

68 PRO C1/289/10; York CRO E39, 128, 172, 187, 205–7.

69 Loan arrangements reflected political networks within regions. For the southwest, see Kowaleski, “Fourteenth-Century Exeter,” 366; for Yorkshire, see Kermode, “York, Beverley and Hull,” 235–36.

70 PRO C1/16/163, 164.

71 For example, Memorandum Book, I, 187, 204, 215, 236, 245; II, 34, 39, 112, 218; III, 6, 7, 38, 53, 102.

72 Ibid., III, 53; York Borthwick Inst. Prob. Reg. II, 612; (Auncell); CCR 1447–54, 465; Wedgwood, J. C., Biographies of the Members of the Commons House, 1430–1509 (London, 1936), 12.

73 (Bilton) Hull CRO BRE 1 263; Memorandum Book, III, 102, 105.

74 Statutes of the Realm, II, 513. Quoted in Cal. Plea & Mem. Rolls City of London, 1413–37, xx.

75 See, for example, 1428, the case of John Davy of Exeter, who promised to settle a debt “immediately after a certain ship… should chance to arrive at any port in England.” Gross, C., ed., Select Cases Concerning the Law Merchant, I, Selden Society 23 (1908): 117. John Henryson of Hull made bequests in his will in 1526 contingent upon the arrival of the “hulks out of Dansk.” Prob. Reg. IX, 328.

76 Memorandum Book, III, 121–22.

77 Cal. Plea & Mem. Rolls City of London, 1413–37, xix–xxiii; ibid., 1437–57, xxii–xxviii, 1; ibid., 1458–82, 147–79, for an appendix listing such gifts. See also Rosser, G., Medieval Westminster, 1200–1540 (Oxford, 1989), 156–57.

78 In 1465, the Dominican Friars in York were in danger of forfeiting jewels, books, and other “precious gifts” that they had used as security to raise loans. Memorandum Book, II, lxxi–iii.

79 This is an argument advanced by Baum, “Hanse Annuities,” 48.

80 Cf. London, where the evidence of the Sheriffs’ and Mayor's courts and of Staple Certificates confirm that the flow of credit was always from London to the provinces; Bennett, “Debt and Credit in the Urban Economy,” 142, 147, 169–71. See also Britnell, Growth and Decline in Colchester, 206–8, 281, for fluctuations over time.

81 For example, Lancaster, CPR 1436–41, 458; Richmond, ibid., 217; Burton-on-Trent, ibid., 216, 1441–46, 18; Penrith, ibid., 7; Lincolnshire, 1452–61, II; Coventry, ibid., 264, 453; Chesterfield, York CRO E39, 288.

82 CPR 1405–9, 226; 1413–29, 82; 1436–41, 322; CCR 1447–61, 132; 1461–7, 502; 1494–1509, 3.

83 Wroot, H. E., “Yorkshire Abbeys and the Wool Trade,” Miscellanea, Thoresby Society 33 (1935): 1415.

84 For example, Reginald Aleyn between 1391 and 1393, CPR 1391–6, 398.

85 CPR 1392–6, 22 (Savage); ibid.1416–22, 95 (Fitling).

86 Testamenta Eboracensia, III, 101–5.

87 York CRO E39, 278, 284–85, 288, 295.

88 Memorandum Book, II, 9–10, 269.

89 For example, William Bracebridge of York, Yorkshire Deeds, IV, 161; William Brompton of Hull, Hull CRO D533, 534. Richard Blackburn moved down to London but returned to York before he died. Memorandum Book, II, 160; York Borthwick Inst. Prob. Reg. VIII, 105.

90 Hostilities between the Hanse and the East Coast ports in particular probably accelerated the carriage of Yorkshire cloth via London. In 1420–21, for instance, Hanse merchants were exporting York coverlets through London. Gras, N. S. B., The Early English Customs System (Cambridge, Mass., 1918), 120, 459, 469.

91 British Library, Harleian MS 560; Raine, J., ed., Sanctuarium Dunelmense et Sanctuarium Beverlacense, Surtees Society 5 (1837): 115, 118, 122, 170–81. For the growth of London's demand for meat from the fourteenth century, see Rosser, G. A., “London and Westminster: The Suburb in the Urban Economy in the Late Middle Ages,” in Towns and Townspeople in the Fifteenth Century, ed. Thomson, J. A. F. (Gloucester, England, 1988), 52.

92 Kermode, “Overseas Trade and Urban Decline,” 60–72; Bartlett, J. N., “The Expansion and Decline of York in the Later Middle Ages,” Economic History Review, 2d ser. 12 (19591960): 2730.

93 Postan, “Private Financial Instruments,” 49–51; Hanham, A., “Foreign Exchange and the English Wool Merchant in the Late 15th Century”, Bulletin of the Institute for Historical Research 44 (1973): 160–75. Coleman, O. and Carus-Wilson, E. M., England's Export Trade, 1275–1547 (Oxford, 1963), 5760.

94 Goldberg, P. J. P., “Mortality and Economic Change in the Diocese of York, 1390–1514,” Northern History 24 (1988): 4142.

95 Bartlett, “Expansion and Decline of York,” 28–30; Bean, J. M. W., The Estates of the Percy Family, 1416–1537 (London, 1958), 36, 37, 41, 47; Dyer, C., Lords and Peasants in a Changing Society: The Estates of the Bishopric of Worcester, 680–1546 (Cambridge, England, 1980), 167–71, 374; Pollard, A. J., “The North-Eastern Economy and the Agrarian Crisis of 1438–40,” Northern History 25 (1989): 88105.

96 Goldberg, “Mortality and Economic Change,” 45, 49.

97 Fowler, J. T., ed., Memorials of the Abbey of St. Mary of Fountains, III, Surtees Society 120 (1918): 33, 76.

98 Kermode, “Overseas Trade and Urban Decline,” 69.

99 Hoppit, “Eighteenth-century credit, 67.

100 Sylvia Thrupp, “The Grocers of London, A Study of Distributive Trade,” in Studies in English Trade in the Fifteenth Century, 252–53, 270, 273–76.

101 Coleman and Carus-Wilson, England's Overseas Trade, Allison, K. J., ed., Victoria History of the County of York East Riding (Oxford, 1969), 2: 8689. Spufford, Money and Its Use, 418.

102 Day, Medieval Market Economy, 185–224.

103 Britnell, Growth and Decline in Colchester, 100–101.

104 Bennett, “Debt and Credit in the Urban Economy,” 153.

105 Baum, “Hanse Annuities,” 48.

106 Since this article was written, Pamela Nightingale has argued that the level of debt and credit reflected in the Statute Staple Certificates involving Londoners was a consequence of their trade in wool, and that the rates of interest set in these transactions in turn influenced all commercial transactions and prices. Nightingale, P., “Monetary Contraction and Mercantile Credit in Later Medieval England,” Economic History Review, 2d ser. 43 (1990): 560–75.

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Money and Credit in the Fifteenth Century: Some Lessons from Yorkshire

  • Jennifer I. Kermode (a1)


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