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Medieval Sourcebook:
Philip, Count of Flanders:
Charter Granted to the Men of Bruges, 1190

Bruges was an important Flemish city on a stream flowing into the Gulf of Zwyn at the southern extremity of the delta of the Rhine. In this position it was admirably situated for the commerce of the main trade routes by land and water. Like other Flemish communes, it tried to obtain its liberty in the twelfth century as this charter illustrates. Its gild merchant was instrumental in forming the Flemish Hanse.

This is the law and custom which the burgesses of Bruges ought to have, and which has been drawn up by Count Philip.

C.18. If the bailiffs, with the assent of the court of the count, decree a toll on bread and wine and other merchandise for the improvement of the town, half the money which comes from the toll shall go to the count, and the other half to the castellan and the town.

C.19. If a merchant or other foreigner should come before the bailiffs for justice, and if those about whom the complaint is made are present or are able to come within three days, or at least within eight days, the bailiffs shall do full justice to him according to the law of the town.

C.20. No one is allowed to put stalls in the market place of the count; but if he does so and is convicted on the word of the bailiffs, he shall give sixty solidi to the count.


From: J. M. Kemble, The Saxons in England, (London: Quaritch, 1876), Vol. II, Appendix, p. 533, 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), p. 207.

Scanned by Jerome S. Arkenberg, Cal. State Fullerton. The text has been modernized by Prof. Arkenberg.

This text is part of the Internet Medieval Source Book. The Sourcebook is a collection of public domain and copy-permitted texts related to medieval and Byzantine history.

Unless otherwise indicated the specific electronic form of the document is copyright. Permission is granted for electronic copying, distribution in print form for educational purposes and personal use. If you do reduplicate the document, indicate the source. No permission is granted for commercial use.

© Paul Halsall, September 1998
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