This paper presents an in-depth historical investigation of the related but distinctive phenomena of interest and usury, in the context of the development of concepts of credit, and of the eventual creation of medieval banking in something semi-recognisable as banking in today's sense of the word. We explore progress through a 'line of time' passing in particular from the 11th to the 15th Centuries. As they logically must, operating, economic and reporting practices changed continually, to meet the varying needs of production and operation, changing as it did from subsistence farming to sophisticated international trading, and we analyse these relationships on a chronological basis. An essential, and fascinating, parallel but much intertwined investigation relates to interest and usury. Definitions changed over time. Attitudes, both by the Church and by thinkers both pre and post the Christian era, changed over time, indeed changed multiple times over time. We attempt an understanding of the complex and at times difficult 'ebbs and flows', sometimes with uncertain directions of influence, involving church, laity and citizenry. In the end, economic necessity and economic logic emerge as the main causal influences of the creation of true (late-) medieval banking.

Usury, Credit and Medieval Banking

ADAMO, Stefano;FASIELLO, Roberta
2016

Abstract

This paper presents an in-depth historical investigation of the related but distinctive phenomena of interest and usury, in the context of the development of concepts of credit, and of the eventual creation of medieval banking in something semi-recognisable as banking in today's sense of the word. We explore progress through a 'line of time' passing in particular from the 11th to the 15th Centuries. As they logically must, operating, economic and reporting practices changed continually, to meet the varying needs of production and operation, changing as it did from subsistence farming to sophisticated international trading, and we analyse these relationships on a chronological basis. An essential, and fascinating, parallel but much intertwined investigation relates to interest and usury. Definitions changed over time. Attitudes, both by the Church and by thinkers both pre and post the Christian era, changed over time, indeed changed multiple times over time. We attempt an understanding of the complex and at times difficult 'ebbs and flows', sometimes with uncertain directions of influence, involving church, laity and citizenry. In the end, economic necessity and economic logic emerge as the main causal influences of the creation of true (late-) medieval banking.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11587/413401
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