Grant of a House at Riga to the Men of Lübeck, 1231
Riga was one of the cities in that part of the Baltic lands which was being subdued
by the Teutonic Knights in the thirteenth century. Actually at this date it was a free
city under the jurisdiction of the Teutonic Knights, and was able to grant privileges to
To all the faithful of Christ seeing these presents, the citizens and consuls of Riga
wish the enjoyment of perpetual peace.
Since those things which are done lapse with the passage of time, and unless they are
corroborated by written testimony, will easily slip the memories of men, and be changed,
we wish it to be known to all people both now and in the future that we, on the advice of
the citizens of Lübeck, for the preservation of that true love and the constant faith we
have in the citizens of Lübeck, have granted a court lying near to the citadel, within
the walls of our city, to be held freely with every right and the income therefrom, to be
possessed by them and their heirs free and quit forever. Therefore, in order that no
calumny may arise in the future, and in order that all doubt may be removed, we have
strengthened this gift of ours, corroborating it in writing and with our seal.
From: G. F. Sartorius, ed., Urkundliche Geschichte des Ursprunges der Deutschen
Hanse, J. M. Lappenberg, rev., (Hamburg, 1830), Vol. II, p. 29; reprinted in Roy C.
Cave & Herbert H. Coulson, eds., A Source Book for Medieval Economic History, (Milwaukee:
The Bruce Publishing Co., 1936; reprint ed., New York: Biblo & Tannen, 1965), p. 232.
Scanned by Jerome S. Arkenberg, Cal. State Fullerton. The text has been modernized by
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© Paul Halsall, October 1998