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The Cambridge Economic History of Europe from the Decline of the Roman Empire
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  • Cited by 6
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    Armstrong, Rita Baillie, Caroline and Cumming-Potvin, Wendy 2014. Mining and Communities: Understanding the Context of Engineering Practice. Synthesis Lectures on Engineers, Technology and Society, Vol. 8, Issue. 1, p. 1.

    Bisman, Jayne E. 2012. Budgeting for famine in Tudor England, 1527–1528: social and policy perspectives. Accounting History Review, Vol. 22, Issue. 2, p. 105.

    Langdon, John and Claridge, Jordan 2011. Transport in Medieval England. History Compass, Vol. 9, Issue. 11, p. 864.

    Acemoglu, Daron and Robinson, James A. 2010. WHY IS AFRICA POOR?. Economic History of Developing Regions, Vol. 25, Issue. 1, p. 21.

    Campbell, Bruce M. S. 1997. Matching Supply to Demand: Crop Production and Disposal by English Demesnes in the Century of the Black Death. The Journal of Economic History, Vol. 57, Issue. 04, p. 827.

    Bryer, R. A. 1994. Accounting for the Social Relations of Feudalism. Accounting and Business Research, Vol. 24, Issue. 95, p. 209.

  • Volume 1: Agrarian Life of the Middle Ages
  • Edited by M. M. Postan

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    The Cambridge Economic History of Europe from the Decline of the Roman Empire
    • Volume 1: Agrarian Life of the Middle Ages
    • Edited by M. M. Postan
    • Online ISBN: 9781139054423
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Book description

This is a completely reset edition. The material in Chapters I, IV, V and VI and in sections 4, 5 and 8 of Chapter VII has been reproduced without any change. Chapters II, III and sections 1, 3 of Chapter VII have been brought up to date. All the other chapters and sections of Chapter VII have either been re-written or replaced by wholly new versions by different authors.

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  • Chapter I - The Settlement and Colonization of Europe
    pp 1-91
    • By Richard Koebner, Late Professor in the Hebrew University of Jersualem and formerly Professor in the University of Breslau
  • View abstract
    The evolution of settlement and colonization during the Middle Ages is of historical importance. Settlement on the land helped to bring about that mingling and stratification of the peoples from which the European nations sprang. Decisive incidents in the social evolution of medieval society were intimately associated with economic use of the land. Landownership, which took the form of landlordship and the disposal of the forces of a multitude of dependants, became the basis of personal political power. The princes and other great landowners of Slavonic Central Europe had remained uninfluenced by German rural economy so long as it was characterized by the manorial type of organization. The relation of the townsmen to the land was not quite uniform. Some townsmen were agriculturists, others drawers of agricultural rents. Both types are to be found in other regions in the same period.
  • Chapter II - Agriculture and Rural Life in the Later Roman Empire
    pp 92-124
  • View abstract
    This chapter deals with the agricultural and rural life in the later Roman empire. The relative scarcity of stock-raising land had more than one effect upon ancient life; it affected, for instance, the diet. The chapter discusses the social consequences of the dry farming and irrigatory methods of agriculture which are characteristic of large portions of the Roman Empire. In the Roman Empire rights existed (or at least jurists proclaimed that they existed) on provincial soil because their recipients were precarious grantees of the Roman government. The supremacy of the state and the suspicions of the central government kept company law backward in the Roman world, so that no facilities existed for joint-stock agricultural enterprises or agricultural banks. Explorations in the Decapolis show the ordinary population dwelling in well-built houses of squared stone, and in Asia Minor, the monumental evidences of the later Roman Empire argue a standard of life higher at least than that of the modern Turkish village.
  • Chapter III - The Evolution of Agricultural Technique
    pp 125-179
  • View abstract
    The evolution of agricultural technique in the Middle Ages can be divided into three main phases: from the fifth to the tenth centuries, eleventh century and early fourteenth century. The great agricultural novelty of the Middle Ages in Western Europe was the three-course rotation, which developed either from the Mediterranean two-course or from systems of temporary cropping. Probably textile plants were widespread in all Western Europe before the destruction of the Roman Empire. The cultivation of plants for dye wares, dyers' weed, woad, madder, saffron, and that of teazels, developed side by side with the textile industries. The Romans had introduced more method and continuity into their selections and crossings of breeds. During the long and confused centuries between the fall of the Western Empire and the dawn of modern times agriculture developed widely and powerfully in temperate Europe. It was based on processes and implements inherited from the ancient world.