Capitulary of Aachen:
Payments on Tributary and Taxable Land, 817
In the Capitulary of Aachen there is evidence of a tendency on the part of
landholders to evade payment of taxes to the royal treasury. Louis the Pious, therefore,
insisted on their payment, but, recognizing that these taxes on land might sometimes be
oppressive, he extended his clemency to those unable to pay in full.
C.2. Concerning tributary land. Whoever transfers land, from
which taxes are customarily paid to our fisc, so that it falls into the hands of the
Church or to another person, he who takes it will pay the tax to our fisc which was paid
at the time---unless by chance he has such a charter granted by his lord by which he can
show that the tax has been remitted.
C.4. Concerning taxable land. If any one has taxable land which his
ancestors gave either to some church or to our villa, he can in no way hold this according
to law, unless it is so willed by the one in whose right either the church or villa rests,
or unless perchance he is the son or grandson of the one who gave it and wants to hold
this land. But it ought to be taken into consideration in this case whether he is rich or
poor and whether he has any benefice or other property of his own. And he who has neither
of these ought to be accorded mercy, lest despoiled of all, he fall into want, and he
shall pay such a tax as was decreed for him or he shall receive some portion in benefice
whence he may be able to sustain himself.
J. P. Migne, ed., Patrologiae Cursus Completus, (Paris, 1862), Vol. XCVII, p.
410; reprinted in Roy C. Cave & Herbert H. Coulson, A Source Book for Medieval
Economic History, (Milwaukee: The Bruce Publishing Co., 1936; reprint ed., New York:
Biblo & Tannen, 1965), pp. 359-360.
Scanned by Jerome S. Arkenberg, Cal. State Fullerton. The text has been modernized by
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