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“I Thought of it at Work, in Ostend”: Urban Artisan Labour and Guild Ideology in the Later Medieval Low Countries*

  • Jan Dumolyn (a1)
Abstract

From the twelfth and certainly from the thirteenth century onwards, a social group of artisans with their own political and economic aspirations can be clearly delineated in Netherlandish towns. Bound through common skilled work, they made up a distinctive group with a self-image and a developing political vision and economic programme. Their “guild ideology” is increasingly clearly expressed in the sources they produced from the fourteenth century onwards as a self-confident group in urban society. Labour, certainly when organized within guild structures, was the cornerstone of community life, cultural experiences, and practical ethics. Even though there were socioeconomic differences among guildsmen and many geographical and chronological variations in the degree of political power they wielded, the ideal of artisan ideology in the late medieval Low Countries was one of a community of brotherly love and charity centred on the value of skilled labour.

TRANSLATED ABSTRACTS FRENCH – GERMAN – SPANISH

Jan Dumolyn. “J’y ai réfléchi pendant le travail, à Ostende.” Main-d’œuvre artisanale urbaine et idéologie de la métier dans les Pays-Bas du bas Moyen Âge.

À partir du douzième et sans nul doute du treizième siècle, un groupe social d’artisans dotés de leurs propres aspirations politiques et économiques peut être clairement délimité dans des villes néerlandaises. Unis par un travail spécialisé commun, ils formèrent un groupe distinctif avec une image propre ainsi qu’une vision politique et un programme économique en développement. Leur “idéologie de la métier” s’exprima avec de plus en plus de clarté dans les sources qu’ils produisirent à partir du quatorzième siècle en tant que groupe conscient de son identité dans la société urbaine. La main-d’œuvre, du moins lorsqu’elle s’organisa dans des structures de guilde, fut la pierre de taille de la vie communautaire, des expériences culturelles et de l’éthique pratique. Même s’il y eut des différences socioéconomiques entre les membres des guildes et de nombreuses variations géographiques et chronologiques dans le degré de pouvoir politique qu’ils exercèrent, l’idéologie artisanale dans les Pays-Bas du bas Moyen Âge reposa sur la notion d’une communauté d’amour fraternel et de charité, centrée sur la valeur du travail qualifié.

Traduction: Christine Plard

Jan Dumolyn. “Die Idee kam mir bei der Arbeit, in Ostende.” Städtisches Handwerk und die Ideologie der Zünften im niederländischen Spätmittelalter.

Möglicherweise vom 12., sicherlich aber vom 13. Jahrhundert an lässt sich mit Bezug auf die niederländischen Städte und in einem deutlich bestimmten Sinn von Handwerkern als einer sozialen Gruppe mit eigenen politischen und wirtschaftlichen Bestrebungen sprechen. Verbunden durch gemeinsame Facharbeit, bildeten die Handwerker eine eigenständige Gruppe mit einem Selbstbild, sich entwickelnden politischen Vorstellungen und einer wirtschaftlichen Programmatik. Ihre “Zünftenideologie” kommt deutlich in den Quellen zum Ausdruck, die die Handwerker ab dem 14. Jahrhundert produziert haben – als selbstbewusste Gruppe in der städtischen Gesellschaft. Die Arbeit war, jedenfalls wenn sie in Gilden-Strukturen organisiert war, der Eckstein des Gemeinschaftslebens, kultureller Erfahrungen und der praktischen Ethik. Zwar gab es sozioökonomische Unterschiede zwischen den Gildenmitgliedern sowie ein geografisches und chronologisches Gefälle im Ausmaß ihrer politischen Macht, doch war das Ideal der Handwerkerideologie in den spätmittelalterlichen Niederlanden das einer von Bruderliebe und Barmherzigkeit gekennzeichneten Gemeinschaft, die den Wert qualifizierter Arbeit zum Mittelpunkt hatte.

Übersetzung: Max Henninger

Jan Dumolyn. “Pienso en ello mientras trabajo, en Ostende.” El artesanado urbano y la ideología gremial en los Países Bajos en el periodo tardo medieval.

Desde el siglo XII y con toda seguridad desde el siglo XIII en adelante, podemos delimitar la existencia en las ciudades de los Países Bajos de un grupo social de artesanos con sus propias aspiraciones políticas y económicas. Ligados por las características comunes de un trabajo cualificado se configuraron como un grupo distintivo, con una imagen propia y desarrollaron una visión política y un programa económico. Su “ideología gremial” se manifiesta claramente de forma creciente en los documentos que produjeron desde el siglo XIV en adelante, como un grupo consciente de sí mismo en el seno de la sociedad urbana. Su trabajo, desde luego organizado a partir de las estructuras gremiales, se convirtió en la piedra angular de una vida en comunidad, de experiencias culturales y de éticas prácticas. Incluso aunque existieran diferencias socioeconómicas entre los agremiados y numerosas variaciones geográficas y cronológicas respecto al grado de poder político que tenían en sus manos, el ideal de una ideología artesana en los Países Bajos tardo medievales se componía de una comunidad de amor fraternal y de caridad centrada en el valor del trabajo cualificado.

Traducción: Vicent Sanz Rozalén

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E-mail: jan.dumolyn@ugent.be
Footnotes
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*

I am deeply indebted to Catharina Lis and Hugo Soly for their inspiring comments on this text and for our conversations on medieval guilds in general. Bert De Munck, Shennan Hutton, and Thomas Donald Jacobs also provided useful critiques and suggestions for this paper.

Footnotes
References
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1 Sosson, Jean-Pierre, “Les XIVe et XVe siècles. Un ‘âge d’or de la main-d’œuvre’? Quelques réflexions à propos des anciens Pays-Bas méridionaux”, Publications du Centre Européen d’Études bourguignonnes, 27 (1987), pp. 1738 ; Thoen, Erik and Soens, Tim, “Vegetarians or Carnivores? Standards of Living and Diet in Late Medieval Flanders”, in Simonetta Cavaciocchi (ed.), Le interazioni fra economia e ambiente biologico nell’Europa preindustriale. Secc. XIII–XVIII (Florence, 2010), pp. 495527 .

2 van Bruaene, Anne-Laure, “Brotherhood and Sisterhood in the Chambers of Rhetoric in the Southern Low Countries”, The Sixteenth Century Journal, 36:1 (2005), pp. 1135 ; on the predominantly middle-class background of the rhetoricians, refuting previous views on their supposed elite nature, see idem, Om beters wille. Rederijkerskamers en de stedelijke cultuur in de Zuidelijke Nederlanden (1400–1650) (Amsterdam, 2008), pp. 43, 51, 157–162, as well as Dumolyn, Jan, “Het corporatieve element in de Middelnederlandse letterkunde en de zogenaamde laatmiddeleeuwse burgermoraal”, Spiegel der Letteren, 56:2 (2014), pp. 123154 .

3 Johannes Mak, Jacobus (ed.), De gedichten van Anthonis de Roovere (Zwolle, 1955), pp. 127129 .

4 A more recent appraisal of him by Oosterman, Johan, “Anthonis De Roovere. Het werk. Overlevering, toeschrijving, plaatsbepaling”, Jaarboek Koninklijke Soevereine Hoofdkamer van Retorica “De Fonteine” te Gent, 45–46 (1995–1996), pp. 29140 ; ibid., 46–47 (1997–1998), pp. 9–88.

5 Mak, De gedichten, pp. 252–253, 314.

6 Ibid., p. 322.

7 Ibid., pp. 335–338, 341–343.

8 Epstein, Stephan R., “Craft Guilds, Apprenticeship, and Technological Change in Pre-Industrial Europe”, The Journal of Economic History, 58:3 (1998), pp. 684713 ; idem and Prak, Maarten (eds), Guilds, Innovation, and the European Economy, 1400–1800 (Cambridge, 2008); Munck, Bert De, Kaplan, Steven L., and Soly, Hugo (eds), Learning on the Shop Floor: Historical Perspectives on Apprenticeship (New York, 2007). Counterarguments, however, have been formulated by Ogilvie, Sheilagh, “Guilds, Efficiency, and Social Capital. Evidence from German Proto-Industry”, The Economic History Review, 57:2 (2004), pp. 286333 .

9 An exception grounded in a more classical form of political economy is Soly, Hugo, “The Political Economy of European Craft Guilds: Power Relations and Economic Strategies of Merchants and Master Artisans in the Medieval and Early Modern Textile Industries”, International Review of Social History, 53: S26 (2008), pp. 4571 , and a strong case for the importance of guilds outside the economic sphere was made by Rosser, Gervase, “Crafts, Guilds and the Negotiation of Work in the Medieval Town”, Past and Present, 154 (1997), pp. 331 .

10 Epstein, Steven A., Wage Labor and Guilds in Medieval Europe (Chapel Hill, NC, 1991), p. 6 .

11 See the recent seminal work by Lis, Catharina and Soly, Hugo, Worthy Efforts: Attitudes to Work and Workers in Pre-Industrial Europe (Boston, MA, 2012), p. 104 .

12 Dyer, Christopher, “Work Ethics in the Fourteenth Century”, in James Bothwell, P.J.P. Goldberg, and W.M. Ormrod (eds), The Problem of Labour in Fourteenth-Century England (Woodbridge, 2000), pp. 2142 .

13 Sewell, William H. Jr, Work and Revolution in France: The Language of Labor from the Old Regime to 1848 (Cambridge, 1980), pp. 35 ; see also Kaplan, Steven L., “Idéologie, conflits et pratiques politiques dans les corporations parisiennes au XVIIIe siècle”, Revue d’Histoire Moderne et Contemporaine, 49:1 (2002), pp. 555 .

14 Kaplan, Steven L., “Social Classification and Representation in the Corporate World of Eighteenth-Century France: Turgot’s ‘Carnival’”, in idem and Cynthia J. Koepp (eds), Work in France: Representations, Meaning, Organization, and Practice (Ithaca, NY, 1986), pp. 176228 .

15 Cerutti, Simona, La ville et les métiers. Naissance d’un langage corporatif (Turin, 17e 18e siècles) (Paris, 1990), p. 15 .

16 Farr, James R., Hands of Honor: Artisans and their World in Dijon, 1550–1650 (Ithaca, NY, 1988), p. 13 ; Lis and Soly, Worthy Efforts.

17 Farr, Hands of Honor, pp. 10–11, 14–21, 125; idem, Artisans in Europe, 1300–1914 (Cambridge, 2000), pp. 21–23, 229–230.

18 Nor did later medieval guild records in the Low Countries distinguish between “honourable work” and “non-honourable” activities, as was sometimes the case, for instance with the linen weavers in some German towns, who were considered “impure” and marginal. See Maschke, Erich, “Die Unterschichten der mittelalterlichen Städte Deutschlands”, in idem and Jürgen Sydow (eds), Gesellschaftliche Unterschichten in den südwestdeutschen Städten (Stuttgart, 1967), pp. 1315 , and Bulow, Glenn M., “Leineweber(innen). Handwerker zwischen Zunftausschluss, Verketzerung und Armutsspott”, in Bernd-Ulrich Hergemöller (ed.), Randgruppen der spätmittelalterlichen Gesellschaft (Warendorf, 2001), pp. 198218 .

19 Rosser, Gervase, The Art of Solidarity in the Middle Ages: Guilds in England 1250–1550 (Oxford, 2015), pp. 105 , 111, 151–152. Crafts in England also played considerably less autonomous roles in labour regulations than was the case in regions such as Flanders, Brabant, or Liège. See Jones, Sarah Rees, “Household, Work and the Problem of Mobile Labour: The Regulation of Labour in Medieval English Towns”, in Bothwell et al., The Problem of Labour in Fourteenth-Century England, pp. 133153 .

20 This was first systematically formulated by Meersseman, Gilles Gérard, Ordo fraternitatis. Confraternite e pietà dei laici nel medioevo, 3 vols (Rome, 1977), I, p. 9 .

21 Wyffels, Carlos, De oorsprong der ambachten in Vlaanderen en Brabant (Brussels, 1951), pp. 55 , 124–142; Trio, Paul, “Les confréries comme expression de solidarité et de conscience urbaine aux Pays-Bas à la fin du Moyen Âge”, in Hanno Brand, Pierre Monnet, and Martial Staub (eds), Memoria, communitas, civitas. Mémoire et conscience urbaines en Occident à la fin du Moyen Âge (Ostfildern, 2003), pp. 131141 ; Trio, Paul, “The Social Positioning of Late Medieval Confraternities in Urbanized Flanders”, in Monika Escher-Apsner (ed.), Medieval Confraternities in European Towns (Frankfurt, 2009), pp. 99110 . In Flanders, as in many other regions outside England, craft guilds were also distinguished from religious confraternities by the terms used to denote them. See also Irsigler, Franz, “Zur Problematik der Gilde- und Zunftterminologie”, in Berent Schwineköper (ed.), Gilden und Zünfte. Kaufmännische und gewerbliche Genossenschaften im frühen und hohen Mittelalter (Sigmaringen, 1985), pp. 5370 .

22 Cerutti, La ville, pp. 17–18.

23 Dumolyn, Jan and Haemers, Jelle, “Patterns of Urban Rebellion in Medieval Flanders”, Journal of Medieval History, 31:4 (2005), pp. 369393 . Jan Dumolyn, “Guild Politics and Political Guilds in Fourteenth-Century Flanders”, in idem et al. (eds), The Voices of the People in Late Medieval Europe: Communication and Popular Politics (Turnhout, 2014), pp. 15–48. Studying towns in the Holy Roman Empire where guilds also achieved a strong governmental role, such as Cologne and Strasbourg, Schulz coined the concept of the politische Zunft, or “political guild”; Schulz, Knut, “Die politische Zunft. Eine die spätmittelalterliche Stadt prägende Institution?”, in Wilfried Ehbrecht (ed.), Verwaltung und Politik in Städten Mitteleuropas. Beiträge zu Verfassungsnorm und Verfassungswirklichkeit in altständischer Zeit (Cologne, 1994), p. 3 . See also Boone, Marc, “La Construction d’un républicanisme urbain. Enjeux de la politique municipale dans les villes flamandes au bas Moyen Âge”, in Denis Menjot and Jean-Luc Pinol (eds), Enjeux et expressions de la politique municipale (XIIe–XXe siècles) (Paris, 1997), pp. 4160 . For the Italian comparison, see for instance Greci, Roberto, “Corporazioni e politiche cittadine. Genesi, consolidamento ed esiti di un rapporto (qualche esempio)”, in idem, Corporazioni e mondo del lavoro nell’Italia padana medievale (Bologna, 1988), pp. 92128 .

24 Dumolyn, “Guild Politics”, with extensive references there.

25 Boone, Marc, “Les métiers dans les villes flamandes au bas moyen âge (XIVe–XVIe siècles). Images normatives, réalités socio-politiques et économiques”, in Pascale Lambrechts and Jean-Pierre Sosson (eds), Les métiers au Moyen Age. Aspects économiques et sociaux. Actes du Colloque international de Louvain-la-Neuve, 7–9 octobre 1993 (Louvain-la-Neuve, 1994), pp. 121 ; Lis, Catharina and Soly, Hugo (eds), Werelden van verschil. Ambachtsgilden in de Lage Landen (Brussels, 1997); Stabel, Peter, “Guilds in Late Medieval Flanders: Myths and Realities of Guild Life in an Export-Oriented Environment”, Journal of Medieval History, 30:2 (2004), pp. 187212 , and Prak, Maarten et al. (eds), Craft Guilds in the Early Modern Low Countries: Work, Power and Representation (Aldershot, 2006).

26 Catharina Lis and Hugo Soly, “Export Industries, Craft Guilds and Capitalist Trajectories, 13th to 18th Centuries”, in Prak et al., Craft Guilds in the Early Modern Low Countries, pp. 107–132.

27 Stabel, Peter, “The Move to Quality Cloth: Luxury Textiles, Labour Markets and Middle Class Identity in a Medieval Textile City. Mechelen in the Late Thirteenth and Early Fourteenth Centuries”, in Bart Lambert and Katherine A. Wilson (eds), Europe’s Rich Fabric: The Consumption, Commercialisation, and Production of Luxury Textiles in Italy, the Low Countries and Neighbouring Territories (Fourteenth–Sixteenth Centuries) (Aldershot, 2016), pp. 159179 .

28 Dumolyn, “Het corporatieve element”.

29 Lis, Catharina and Soly, Hugo, “Craft Guilds in Comparative Perspective: The Northern and Southern Netherlands, a Survey”, in Prak et al., Craft Guilds in the Early Modern Low Countries, pp. 12 ; Prak, Maarten, “Corporate Politics in the Low Countries: Guilds as Institutions, 14th to 18th Centuries”, in Prak et al., Craft Guilds in the Early Modern Low Countries, p. 77 . This same pattern also appeared in other European regions, such as northern Italy and the Rhineland, where guilds had secured political influence during the fourteenth century.

30 Black, Antony, Guilds and Civil Society in European Political Thought from the Twelfth Century to the Present (London, 1984), pp. 2930 .

31 Compare with the far better documented eighteenth-century guilds studied by Kaplan – Kaplan, “Idéologie, conflits et pratiques politiques”, and idem, “Social Classification and Representation in the Corporate World” – or by Prak, Maarten, “Individual, Corporation and Society: The Rhetoric of Dutch Guilds (18th Century)”, in Marc Boone and Maarten Prak (eds), Statuts individuels, statuts corporatifs, statuts judicaires (Leuven, 1996), p. 257 .

32 Huys, Emiel, Duizend jaar mutualiteit bij de Vlaamsche gilden, bijlagen (Kortrijk, 1926), pp. 170172 .

33 Ibid., appendices, pp. 4–5.

34 Middle Dutch dictionaries can be consulted at http://gtb.inl.nl.

35 Reynaert, Joris, “Wat is conste? Het begrip ‘kunst’ en de artistieke context van het Gruuthusehandschrift”, in Jos Koldeweij, Inge Geysen, and Eva Tahon (eds), Liefde en devotie. Het Gruuthusehandschrift. Kunst en cultuur omstreeks 1400 (Antwerp, 2013), pp. 215230 ; cf. Sewell, Work and Revolution in France, pp. 22–24.

36 Thoen and Soens, “Vegetarians”.

37 Müller, J., “Cornelis Everaerts spelen als spiegel van de maatschappelijke toestanden zijns tijds”, Verslagen en Mededeelingen der Koninklijke Vlaamsche Academie voor Taal- en Letterkunde (1907), pp. 442448 ; Hüsken, Wim (ed.), De spelen van Cornelis Everaert. Opnieuw uitgegeven, van inleiding, annotaties en woordverklaringen voorzien, 2 vols (Hilversum, 2005), I, pp. 494495 ; Dumolyn, Jan and Haemers, Jelle, “Let Each Man Carry on with his Trade and Remain Silent: Middle-Class Ideology in the Urban Literature of the Late Medieval Low Countries”, Cultural and Social History, 10:2 (2013), pp. 169189 .

38 Hüsken, De spelen, I, pp. 527–560.

39 Ibid., I, p. 320.

40 Espinas, Georges and Pirenne, Henri (eds), Recueil de documents relatifs à l’histoire de l’industrie drapière en Flandre, 3 vols (Brussels, 1906), III, p. 378 ;

for the context see Van Werveke, H., “De economische en sociale gevolgen van de muntpolitiek der graven van Vlaanderen (1337–1433)”, Annales de la Société d’Emulation de Bruges, 74 (1931), pp. 68 .

41 Espinas and Pirenne, Recueil, III, p. 384.

42 Ibid., I, pp. 297–298.

43 Dumolyn and Haemers, “Let Each Man Carry on with his Trade”.

44 “Dues aes en heeft niet / Six cinq en gheeft niet / Maer quater dry die moeten gheven / Daer six en cinq by moeten leven”; Muller, Jacob W. and Scharpé, Lodewijk (eds), Spelen van Cornelis Everaert (Leiden, 1920), p. 577 .

45 Farr, James R., “On the Shop Floor: Guilds, Artisans, and the European Market Economy, 1350–1750”, The Journal of Early Modern History: Contacts, Contrasts and Comparisons, 1:1 (1997), pp. 2454 .

46 Joosen, Henri, “Recueil de documents relatifs à l’histoire de l’industrie drapièr a Malines (des origines à 1384)”, Bulletin de la Commission Royale d’Histoire, 99 (1935), p. 498 .

47 van den Heuvel, Nicolaas H.L., De ambachtsgilden van ’s-Hertogenbosch vóór 1629. Rechtsbronnen van het bedrijfsleven en het gildewezen (Utrecht, 1946), p. 6 .

48 For instance for Oudenaarde, in Espinas and Pirenne, Recueil, I, pp. 282–283, 285.

49 Prak, , “Individual, Corporation and Society”, pp. 260262 . See also Farr, James R., The Work of France: Labor and Culture in Early Modern Times, 1350–1800 (Plymouth, 2008), pp. 8387 , and idem, “Cultural Analysis and Early Modern Artisans”, in Geoffrey Crossick (ed.), The Artisan and the European Town, 1500–1900 (Aldershot, 1997), p. 57.

50 Espinas and Pirenne, Recueil, II, p. 539.

51 Lis and Soly, Worthy Efforts, p. 348.

52 Hüsken, Wim, “Cornelis Everaert and the Community of Late Medieval Bruges”, in Alan Hindley (ed.), Drama and Community: People and Plays in Medieval Europe (Turnhout, 1999), pp. 110125 .

53 Hummelen, Willem M.H., De sinnekens in het rederijkersdrama (Groningen, 1958), p. 278 .

54 “dat zy niet te werke gaen zouden” and “in quader meeninghe”; Jean-Jacques Lambin (ed.), Merkwaerdige gebeurtenissen, vooral in Vlaenderen en Brabant, en ook in de aengrenzende landstreken. Van 1377 tot 1443 (Ypres, 1835), pp. 1–2.

55 Dumolyn, Jan, “The Vengeance of the Commune: Sign Systems of Popular Politics in Medieval Bruges”, in Hipólito Rafael Olíva Herrer et al. (eds), La comunidad medieval como esfera publica (Seville, 2014), pp. 251289 .

56 Dumolyn, Jan and Haemers, Jelle, “A Bad Chicken was Brooding: Subversive Speech in Late Medieval Flanders”, Past and Present, 214:1 (2012), pp. 4586 .

57 eens, Alle, eens, alle!”, Victor Fris, “De onlusten te Gent in 1432–1435”, Bulletijn der Maatschappij van Geschied- en Oudheidkunde te Gent, 8 (1900), p. 167 .

58 “omme te voedene broederlijke minne en eendrachtichede binnen deser stede”; “teeuwigen dagen bruederlike mynne te onderhoudene ende te doene”; “deen metten anderen broederlike te levene ende te stervene”; Dumolyn, Jan, “‘Rebelheden ende vergaderinghen’. Twee Brugse documenten uit de grote opstand van 1436–1438”, Handelingen van de Koninklijke Commissie voor Geschiedenis, 162 (1996), pp. 318319 ; Génard, Pierre (ed.), De gebroeders Van der Voort en de volksopstand van 1477–1478. Verhalen en ambtelijke stukken (Antwerp, 1879), p. 53 .

59 Lambin, Merkwaerdige gebeurtenissen, pp. 3–5.

60 “comme se ilz eussent eu guerre ouverte, et voullu combatre tout le monde, tant estoient hardis et présomptueux”; “qui sont tousjours plus légiers et hardis de parler que les anchiens”; “toutes choses seroient a meilleur et plus raisonnables pris qu’elles n’estoient, et que par ainsy le people viveroit plus a son ayse et en beaucoup plus grande liberté qu’ilz n’avoient fait le passé”: Gachard, Louis Prosper (ed.), Relation des troubles de Gand sous Charles-Quint par un anonyme (Brussels, 1846), pp. 810 .

61 Compare with Cohn, Samuel K., Lust for Liberty: The Politics of Social Revolt in Medieval Europe, 1200–1425 (Cambridge, 2006), pp. 236242 .

62 Lis and Soly, Worthy Efforts, p. 345.

63 Dumolyn, Jan and Papin, Kristof, “Y avait-il des ‘révoltes fiscales’ dans les villes médiévales des Pays-Bas méridionaux? L’exemple de Saint-Omer en 1467”, Revue du Nord, 397 (2012), pp. 827870 .

64 “seroient mises jus maletostes et impositions, et sçauroient que tels et tels deniers estoient devenus, qui si longuement avoient esté reçus au grief du peuple, et feroient, par le Saint Dieu! Un monde nouvel, ce disoient aussi bien à leur tour comme avoient fait autres”: Lettenhove, Joseph Kervyn de (ed.), Oeuvres de Georges Chastellain (Brussels, 1864), V, p. 308 .

65 Dumolyn, Jan, “Criers and Shouters: The Discourse on Radical Urban Rebels in Late Medieval Flanders”, Journal of Social History, 42:1 (2008), pp. 111135 .

66 Dumolyn, and Haemers, , “Patterns of Urban Rebellion in Medieval Flanders”, pp. 369393 .

67 See Dumolyn, “Guild Politics”.

68 Kaplan, Steven L., “The Character and Implications of Strife among the Masters inside the Guilds of Eighteenth-Century Paris”, Journal of Social History, 19:4 (1986), pp. 631647 .

69 Sosson, Jean-Pierre, “Corporation et paupérisme aux XIVe et XVe siècles. Le salariat du bâtiment en Flandre et en Brabant, et notamment à Bruges”, Tijdschrift voor Geschiedenis, 92 (1979), pp. 557575 .

70 Boone, Marc and Brand, Hanno, “Vollersoproeren en collectieve actie in Gent en Leiden in de 14de–15de eeuw”, Tijdschrift voor Sociale Geschiedenis, 19:2 (1993), pp. 168192 ; Boone, “Les métiers dans les villes flamandes”.

71 Dumolyn, “Criers”.

72 Soly, , “The Political Economy of European Craft Guilds”; Franco Franceschi, “L’organizzazione corporativa delle grandi manifatture tessili nell’Europa occidentale. Spunti comparativi”, in Tra economia e politica: le corporazioni nell’Europa medievale (Pistoia, 2007), pp. 333357 . For the organization of female labour in Flanders, see Howell, Martha C., Women, Production, and Patriarchy in Late Medieval Cities (Chicago, IL, 1986), and Hutton, Shennan, Women and Economic Activities in Late Medieval Ghent (New York, 2011).

73 Rosser, Gervase, “Solidarités et changement social. Les fraternités urbaines anglaises à la fin du Moyen Age”, Annales. Économies. Sociétés. Civilisations, 48:5 (1993), pp. 1130 , 1142.

74 Kaplan, “The Character and Implications of Strife”.

75 Bisschop, Willem and Verwijs, Eelco (eds), Willem van Hildegaersberch: Gedichten (The Hague, 1870), pp. 117119 .

76 Goldberg, P.J.P., “Masters and Men in Later Medieval England”, in Dawn M. Hadley (ed.), Masculinity in Medieval Europe (London and New York, 1999), pp. 5670 ; Prak, Maarten, “Moral Order in the World of Work: Social Control and the Guilds in Europe”, in Herman Roodenburg and Pieter Spierenburg (eds), Social Control in Europe, vol. I: 1500–1800 (Columbus, OH, 2004), pp. 176199 . On apprentices, see Munck, Bert De, “From Brotherhood Community to Civil Society? Apprentices between Guild, Household and the Freedom of Contract in Early Modern Antwerp”, Social History, 35:1 (2010), pp. 120 .

77 Mak, De gedichten, p. 265.

78 Dambruyne, Johan, “Journeymen, Social Rise and the Urban Labour Market in the Southern Netherlands during the Transformation from the Middle Ages to the Early Modern Period”, in Natasja Peeters (ed.), Invisible Hands? The Role and Status of the Painter’s Journeyman in the Low Countries, c.1450–c.1650 (Leuven, 2007), pp. 105132 ; Lis, Catharina and Soly, Hugo, “‘An Irresistible Phalanx’: Journeymen Associations in Western Europe, 1300–1800”, in Catharina Lis, Jan Lucassen, and Hugo Soly (eds), Before the Unions: Wage Earners and Collective Action in Europe, 1300–1850 (Cambridge, 1994), pp. 3134 .

79 Werveke, Hans Van, De medezeggenschap van de knapen (gezellen) in de middeleeuwsche ambachten (Antwerp, 1943), pp. 816 .

80 “alle die goey cnapen gemeynlic sijn eendrechtelic overcomen”; “mynlic overdragen”: Van den Heuvel, De ambachtsgilden, I, pp. 259–261.

81 “pour avoir ordre, regle et bon police en leur dit bon mestier concernant leur bressin et autres leus affairez, tant pour les riches, moyens et poeuvres”; “par la puissance des riches, les moyens et poevres ne soyent trop oppressés et que chascun sache comment se conduire”: Santbergen, René Van, Règlements et privilèges des XXXII métiers de la cité de Liège. Fascicule V. Les boulangers (Liège, 1953), pp. 3445 .

82 Snellaert, Ferdinand (ed.), Nederlandsche gedichten uit de veertiende eeuw van Jan Boendale, Hein van Aken en anderen, naar het Oxfordsch handschrift (Brussels, 1869), pp. 214 , 255; Oostrom, Frits van, Wereld in woorden. Geschiedenis van de Nederlandse literatuur 1300–1400 (Amsterdam, 2013), pp. 121 , 139.

83 Rubin, Miri, “Small Groups: Identity and Solidarity in the Late Middle Ages”, in Jennifer Kermode (ed.), Enterprise and Individuals in Fifteenth-Century England (Aberdeen, 1991), p. 136 .

84 Pétré, Hélène, Caritas. Étude sur le vocabulaire latin de la charité chrétienne (Leuven, 1948).

85 Vincent, Cathérine, Les confréries médiévales dans le Royaume de France, XIIIe–XVe siècle (Paris, 1994), pp. 6784 ; Rosser, , The Art of Solidarity, pp. 89118 .

86 Thijs, Alfons K.L., “Religieuze rituelen in het emancipatieproces van Vlaamse en Brabantse handwerksgezellen (zestiende-negentiende eeuw)”, in Catharina Lis and Hugo Soly (eds), Werken volgens de regels. Ambachten in Brabant en Vlaanderen 1500–1800 (Brussels, 1994), pp. 239240 .

87 Lis, and Soly, , Worthy Efforts , 346; Kellie Robertson, The Labourer’s Two Bodies: Literary and Legal Productions in Britain, 1350–1500 (New York, 2006), pp. 46 .

88 Verhavert, Jan, Het ambachtswezen te Leuven (Leuven, 1940), p. 56 .

89 Rubin, “Small Groups”, pp. 135–138.

90 “ter gepasten uren”; “tot den eynde”: Verhavert, Ambachtswezen, pp. 57–58, citing examples from Leuven, Ghent, Aalst, Namur, Lier, and Antwerp.

91 Stabel, Peter, “Labour Time, Guild Time? Working Hours in the Cloth Industry of Medieval Flanders and Artois (Thirteenth-Fourteenth Centuries)”, Tijdschrift voor Sociale en Economische Geschiedenis, 11:4 (2014), pp. 2753 .

92 See also Ramakers, Bart, Spelen en figuren. Toneelkunst en processiecultuur in Oudenaarde tussen Middeleeuwen en Moderne Tijd (Amsterdam, 1996).

93 Rosser, “Crafts, Guilds”, pp. 27–30.

94 Stabel, “Guilds”, pp. 188–192.

95 See Rubin, Miri, Charity and Community in Medieval Cambridge (Cambridge, 2002).

96 Rawcliffe, Carole, “Dives Redeemed? The Guild Almshouses of Later Medieval England”, The Fifteenth Century, 8 (2008), pp. 5 , 19; Blockmans, Wim and Prevenier, Walter, “Armoede in de Nederlanden van de 14de tot het midden van de 16de eeuw. Bronnen en problemen”, Tijdschrift voor Geschiedenis, 88 (1975), pp. 501538 .

97 As demonstrated by Davies, Matthew, “The Tailors of London: Corporate Charity in the Late Medieval Town”, in Rowena E. Archer (ed.), Crown, Government and People in the Fifteenth Century (Gloucester, 1995), pp. 161190 .

98 McRee, Benjamin R., “Charity and Guild Solidarity in Late Medieval England”, Journal of British Studies, 32 (1993), p. 198 .

99 Lis and Soly, Worthy Efforts, p. 108.

100 See Lynch, Katherine A., Individuals, Families and Communities in Europe, 1200–1800 (Cambridge, 2003); Robertson, , The Labourer’s Two Bodies, pp. 2426 , 80–82.

101 Masure, Hadewijch, “‘Eerlycke huijsarmen’ of ‘ledichgangers’? Armenzorg en gemeenschapsvorming in Brussel, 1300–1640”, Stadsgeschiedenis, 7:1 (2012), p. 9 .

102 “overmits den zwaeren aerbeid ende zuerder pynen”; “ter laeffenisse ende troeste”: Huys, Duizend jaar mutualiteit, p. 3.

103 Ibid., pp. 65, 68–69, 41; Espinas and Pirenne, Recueil, I, p. 542.

104 Wyffels, De oorsprong, p. 97.

105 Huys, Duizend jaar mutualiteit, pp. 16–17.

106 Mak, De gedichten, p. 254.

107 Amelang, James S., The Flight of Icarus: Artisan Autobiography in Early Modern Europe (Stanford, CA, 1998), pp. 44 , 120.

108 Examples in ibid., pp. 277, 293, 307, 315, 317, 321, 325.

109 Smith, Jamie L., “ Als ich can: How Jan van Eyck Extended the Vernacular from Dutch Poetry to Oil Painting”, in Joost Keizer and Todd M. Richardson (eds), The Transformation of Vernacular Expression in Early Modern Arts (Leiden, 2012), pp. 273302 , offers an elaborate intellectual genealogy of this motto. However, I feel that the older interpretation of Elisabeth Dhanens, Hubert en Jan van Eyck (Antwerp, 1980), pp. 180–181, on Van Eyck’s awareness “of his own skills and limits” reflects its most straightforward meaning.

110 First formulated in Sosson, Jean-Pierre, “La structure sociale de la corporation médiévale. L’exemple des tonneliers de Bruges de 1350 à 1500”, Revue belge de Philologie et d’Histoire, 44:2 (1966), pp. 457478 ; idem, Les travaux publics de la ville de Bruges, XIVe–XVe siècles. Les matériaux. Les hommes (Brussels, 1977), pp. 225–260.

111 Mak, De gedichten, p. 343.

112 Ibid., p. 234.

* I am deeply indebted to Catharina Lis and Hugo Soly for their inspiring comments on this text and for our conversations on medieval guilds in general. Bert De Munck, Shennan Hutton, and Thomas Donald Jacobs also provided useful critiques and suggestions for this paper.

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International Review of Social History
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