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Medieval Sourcebook:
Capitulary of Frankfort:
The Price of Staples, 794

C.4. Our most pious lord king has decreed, with the assent of the holy synod, that no man, clerk or lay, may sell his corn more dearly, in time of abundance or scarcity of the harvest, than the public muid brings according to recent decree. For a muid of oats one denarius, for a muid of barley two denarii, for a muid of rye three denarii, for a muid of wheat four denarii. But if he wishes to sell it as bread, he ought to give twelve wheaten loaves, each weighing two pounds, for one denarius; fifteen of rye of equal weight for one denarius; twenty barley loaves of the same weight, or twenty-five oat cakes of the same weight, for one denarius. As for the public grain of the lord king, if it be sold, two muids of oats shall be sold for a denarius, one of barley for a denarius, one of rye for two denarii, one of wheat for three denarii. And let him who holds a benefice from us see to it that, when he has given what is due to God, no serf belonging to that benefice die of hunger, and what is left after the necessities of the serfs have been attended to shall be sold according to the rates mentioned above.


From: J. P. Migne, ed., Patrologiae Cursus Completus, (Paris, 1862), Vol. XCVII, p. 193, 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. 130.

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

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© Paul Halsall, September 1998