Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Sumptuary Law in Italy 1200-1500$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Catherine Kovesi Killerby

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780199247936

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199247936.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use (for details see www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 23 January 2019

Money and People

Money and People

(p.41) 3 Money and People
Sumptuary Law in Italy 1200-1500

Catherine Kovesi Killerby (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter begins by explaining that sumptuary legislation cannot be ‘linked in a simple or satisfying way to contemporary economic opinion or conditions’. It then investigates the importance for late medieval and Renaissance Italian governments of preserving and encouraging the two resources of money and people by means of sumptuary laws. It stresses that the laws stated that expenditure itself was not discouraged for it was recognised that the circulation of money was vital to the maintenance and improvement of trade and industry. It clarifies that the laws considered useless expenditure to be universally condemned. It argues that an apparent flaw in these governments' economic thought here is their failure to consider that expenditure by the wealthy, though possibly foolish, provided income for artisans. It stresses that sumptuary laws were not employed as a useless, rhetorical exercise of moral catharsis, but as a practical means of dealing with practical problems.

Keywords:   sumptuary legislation, economic impact, medieval Italian government, Renaissance Italian government, artisan

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .