A Country Merchant, 1495-1520: Trading and Farming at the End of the Middle Ages

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9780199214242: A Country Merchant, 1495-1520: Trading and Farming at the End of the Middle Ages

Around 1500 England's society and economy had reached a turning point. After a long period of slow change and even stagnation, an age of innovation and initiative was in motion, with enclosure, voyages of discovery, and new technologies. It was an age of fierce controversy, in which the government was fearful of beggars and wary of rebellions. The 'commonwealth' writers such as Thomas More were sharply critical of the greed of profit hungry landlords who dispossessed the poor. This book is about a wool merchant and large scale farmer who epitomises in many ways the spirit of the period.

John Heritage kept an account book, from which we can reconstruct a whole society in the vicinity of Moreton-in-Marsh, Gloucestershire. He took part in the removal of a village which stood in the way of agricultural 'improvement', ran a large scale sheep farm, and as a 'woolman' spent much time travelling around the countryside meeting with gentry, farmers, and peasants in order to buy their wool. He sold the fleeces he produced and those he gathered to London merchants who exported through Calais to the textile towns of Flanders. The wool growers named in the book can be studied in their native villages, and their lives can be reconstructed in the round, interacting in their communities, adapting their farming to new circumstances, and arranging the building of their local churches.

A Country Merchant has some of the characteristics of a biography, is part family history, and part local history, with some landscape history. Dyer explores themes in economic and social history without neglecting the religious and cultural background. His central concerns are to demonstrate the importance of commerce in the period, and to show the contribution of peasants to a changing economy.

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About the Author:


Christopher Dyer has held posts at the Universities of Edinburgh, Birmingham, and Leicester. He has written five books, and has been joint author or editor of six others. He has published numerous articles and essays in many journals and edited volumes. His central interest is in the economic and social history of medieval England, and in pursuit of a broader understanding of the period has worked on landscape history and archaeology. He is CBE, a Fellow of the British Academy, and has been President of the Society for Medieval Archaeology, The British Agricultural History Society, the Medieval Settlement Research Group, the Bristol and Gloucestershire Archaeological Society, and the Worcestershire Historical Society. He has been editor of the journals Midland History and the Economic History Review.

Review:


"Dyer has written an unusual book about a critical period in English history, when dramatic changes in agriculture and economics were afoot with the enclosure movement and shifts away from feudalism toward capitalism. The author focuses on commerce and the changing economy of the peasants and small merchants dealing with land, profit, greed, and even the deserted and disappearing villages of the 16th century. He provides a nuanced examination of the transition from medieval to early modern England and the often-complex lives of some of the small-scale country merchant farmers. Valuable in any collection on preindustrial Europe. Recommended." --CHOICE


"remarkable" --American Historical Review


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Descripción Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2012. Hardback. Estado de conservación: New. New.. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.Around 1500 England s society and economy had reached a turning point. After a long period of slow change and even stagnation, an age of innovation and initiative was in motion, with enclosure, voyages of discovery, and new technologies. It was an age of fierce controversy, in which the government was fearful of beggars and wary of rebellions. The commonwealth writers such as Thomas More were sharply critical of the greed of profit hungry landlords who dispossessed the poor. This book is about a wool merchant and large scale farmer who epitomises in many ways the spirit of the period. John Heritage kept an account book, from which we can reconstruct a whole society in the vicinity of Moreton in Marsh, Gloucestershire. He took part in the removal of a village which stood in the way of agricultural improvement , ran a large scale sheep farm, and as a woolman spent much time travelling around the countryside meeting with gentry, farmers, and peasants in order to buy their wool. He sold the wool he produced himself, and the fleeces he gathered, to London merchants who exported wool through Calais to the textile towns of Flanders. The wool growers named in the book can be studied in their native villages, and their lives can be reconstructed in the round, interacting in their communities, adapting their farming to new circumstances, and arranging the building of their local churches. A Country Merchant has some of the characteristics of a biography, is part family history and part local history, with some landscape history. Dyer explores themes in economic and social history without neglecting the religious and cultural background. His central concern is to demonstrate the importance of the peasants contribution to a changing economy. Nº de ref. de la librería APC9780199214242

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Descripción Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2012. Hardback. Estado de conservación: New. New.. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. Around 1500 England s society and economy had reached a turning point. After a long period of slow change and even stagnation, an age of innovation and initiative was in motion, with enclosure, voyages of discovery, and new technologies. It was an age of fierce controversy, in which the government was fearful of beggars and wary of rebellions. The commonwealth writers such as Thomas More were sharply critical of the greed of profit hungry landlords who dispossessed the poor. This book is about a wool merchant and large scale farmer who epitomises in many ways the spirit of the period. John Heritage kept an account book, from which we can reconstruct a whole society in the vicinity of Moreton in Marsh, Gloucestershire. He took part in the removal of a village which stood in the way of agricultural improvement , ran a large scale sheep farm, and as a woolman spent much time travelling around the countryside meeting with gentry, farmers, and peasants in order to buy their wool. He sold the wool he produced himself, and the fleeces he gathered, to London merchants who exported wool through Calais to the textile towns of Flanders. The wool growers named in the book can be studied in their native villages, and their lives can be reconstructed in the round, interacting in their communities, adapting their farming to new circumstances, and arranging the building of their local churches. A Country Merchant has some of the characteristics of a biography, is part family history and part local history, with some landscape history. Dyer explores themes in economic and social history without neglecting the religious and cultural background. His central concern is to demonstrate the importance of the peasants contribution to a changing economy. Nº de ref. de la librería APC9780199214242

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