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Cartulary of Saint Trond:
A Complaint About the Tithe of Ryckel, 1232

The tithe which was paid on staple commodities such as wine and wheat was the greater tithe; that paid on smaller things such as eggs and poultry was called the lesser tithe. Both could be transferred by him in whose right they were.

To all the faithful of Christ who may see these presents, to the bailiffs, judges, and citizens of Saint-Trond, and to the deans of the lazar house of the said town, namely, Walter, son of Hermen gard, Guntram Crukebout, and Otto of Jamine, greeting.

In order that those things which pertain commendably to the glory and usefulness of the church of God may remain unchanged, it is agreed that they should be secured by writing and perpetuated. Therefore, we make known to all of you that the saintly man, Samuel, priest of the lepers of Saint-Trond, has sought for the use of the chapel of the lepers, the greater part of the great tithe of

Ryckel and the third part of the lesser tithe, God willing. For this cause he has sold a missal and a gradual and a bell. Moreover, he has pledged a chalice and a chasuble which he acquired by his industry. These things are necessary to a priest and a scholar. So, I say, that the aforesaid greater and lesser tithe shall be freely given to that chaplain. Nor may the lepers of that house contradict this statement since this has been done with the consent of the lepers and of the deans of that house. If, God willing, other things are sought by just means, so that two priests may be maintained in that place to teach them, let them give to them what they have sought and acquired. Nevertheless let the priests keep in mind the welfare of the infirm, by hearing confessions, administering the sacraments, bestowing on them the Eucharist, unction, burial, and other rites; and thus two priests shall take care of that house with out the burden of increased expenses to the said house. And in order that these things may be safe and secure, we have confirmed this charter by fixing our seal and the seal of Samuel, the priest.

Drawn up and signed on the octave of St. John before Epiphany, in the year of the Lord, 1232.


C. Piot, Cartulaire de l'Abbaye de Saint-Trond, (Brussels: Academie Royale de Belgique, 1870), p. 191; 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. 388-389.

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

This text is part of the Internet Medieval Sourcebook. 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, October 1998
[email protected]


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