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Book Review - Power and Profit: The Merchant in Medieval Europe

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  • Marion McNealy
    Power and Profit: The Merchant in Medieval Europe, by Peter Spufford came in the mail today. At $20 for a used copy, its a screaming deal for the artwork
    Message 1 of 5 , Oct 6, 2006
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      Power and Profit: The Merchant in Medieval Europe, by Peter Spufford came in the mail today. At $20 for a used copy, its a screaming deal for the artwork alone, however the text is quite good and gives great insight into how goods were created, moved from producer to market and the people involved in the process.

      The book contains many b/w illustrations and some color of merchants, tradesman, goods and people going about on business. The illustrations are mainly from French and German sources, with some Italian as well.

      Besides the great art work, the text gives a nice overview, with some great little details, of how goods were produced, bought and sold, moved to market, who bought them and the life of the merchant on the road. The author also gives a nice realistic assessment into period descriptions of cloth and materials, and helps provide some much needed perspective into the expense of some items.

      All and all, its a great overview book into mercants, markets, money and goods. I highly recommend it.

      Great little factoids from the book:
      - Merchants used a parchment roll itinerary listing the names of towns, and the distances between them, that were on the road from one major city to the next. (p.54)

      - By the 1370's merchants from Ulm, Augsberg and Nuremberg were buying raw Syrian cotton in Milan and Venice and selling it to southern German fustian makers located in Ulm, and between Ulm and Augsburg. At the beginning of the 16th century, 50,000 pieces of linen and 100,000 pieces of fustian were inspected and stamped in Ulm. (p.254)

      -Marion
      www.curiousfrau.com

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Johanna von Nurnberg
      Thanks for posting this Marion.I always appreciate a reference to Nurnberg,my persona s city of origin. Johanna ... buying raw Syrian cotton in Milan and
      Message 2 of 5 , Oct 6, 2006
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        Thanks for posting this Marion.I always appreciate a reference to
        Nurnberg,my persona's city of origin.
        Johanna
        >
        > - By the 1370's merchants from Ulm, Augsberg and Nuremberg were
        buying raw Syrian cotton in Milan and Venice and selling it to southern
        German fustian makers located in Ulm, and between Ulm and Augsburg. At
        the beginning of the 16th century, 50,000 pieces of linen and 100,000
        pieces of fustian were inspected and stamped in Ulm. (p.254)
        >
        > -Marion
        > www.curiousfrau.com
        >
        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        >
      • Wanda Pease
        Johanna, Have you read: Magdalena and Balthazar: An Intimate Portrait of Life in 16th-Century Europe Revealed in the Letters of a Nuremburg Husband and Wife by
        Message 3 of 5 , Oct 6, 2006
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          Johanna,

          Have you read:
          Magdalena and Balthazar: An Intimate Portrait of Life in 16th-Century
          Europe Revealed in the Letters of a Nuremburg Husband and Wife by Steven
          Ozment (Hardcover - 1986)

          Also anything on the Three Behaim Boys - Growing up in early modern
          Germany. This family and the Fuggers are two of the most notable non-nobles
          (they could buy and sell most nobles) in Germany. The Medici without the
          dazzled by royalty thing.

          Regina Romsey


          > -----Original Message-----
          > From: Authentic_SCA@yahoogroups.com
          > [mailto:Authentic_SCA@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of Johanna von Nurnberg
          > Sent: Friday, October 06, 2006 1:03 PM
          > To: Authentic_SCA@yahoogroups.com
          > Subject: [Authentic_SCA] Re: Book Review - Power and Profit: The
          > Merchant in Medieval Europe
          >
          >
          >
          > Thanks for posting this Marion.I always appreciate a reference to
          > Nurnberg,my persona's city of origin.
          >
          >
        • Marion McNealy
          Johanna, My persona s is from there as well, so I ve done a lot of research on that town. Steven Ozment is a history professor at Harvard and has written many
          Message 4 of 5 , Oct 7, 2006
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            Johanna,
            My persona's is from there as well, so I've done a lot of research on that town. Steven Ozment is a history professor at Harvard and has written many non-fiction books using extant family archives and letters from people in the town. If you haven't read any of his books I highly recommend them. That's one of the benefits of focusing on Nuremburg, a lot of artwork and letters survived, so its a much easier place to research than other towns.

            -Marion (aka Sophia Kress, traveling merchants wife from Nuremberg)

            ----- Original Message ----
            Johanna von Nurnberg wrote:

            Thanks for posting this Marion.I always appreciate a reference to
            Nurnberg,my persona's city of origin.
            Johanna
            >
            _,_.___
            ._,_._,___

            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • azilisarmor
            For 20 bucks, you got a good deal. I read it this summer; was a bit disappointed in the relative scarcity of info about early period (i.e., before 13th
            Message 5 of 5 , Oct 7, 2006
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              For 20 bucks, you got a good deal.
              I read it this summer; was a bit disappointed in the relative scarcity
              of info about early period (i.e., before 13th century) But the
              illustrations are great.

              Deroch
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