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Early Modern Economic and Social History

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Easter Term 2019


The seminar meets Thursdays at 5pm in Room 12 of the History Faculty. We normally have dinner with the speaker afterwards, to which all are welcome.

Convenors: Amy Erickson, Craig Muldrew, Leigh Shaw-Taylor and Paul Warde

25 April: Richard Bell (Oxford)

Charity, Debt and Social Control in England's Early Modern Prisons

This paper explores the nature, scope and distribution of prison charity in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century England, particularly among incarcerated debtors. It reveals its significance as a vector of moral judgement, and how the ethical context of credit relations gave prisons new significance as institutions of discipline, punishment and rehabilitation.


9 May: Jessica Dijkman (Utrecht)

Relief Stocks in Early Modern Holland

In the towns of early modern Holland grain price peaks triggered reactions by the urban authorities. Among them were public grain purchases, to be used for relief. This paper analyses the development of this practice in Amsterdam between the mid-sixteenth and mid-eighteenth century, looking at volumes purchased, expenses incurred and methods employed for the distribution of relief. The crises of 1556-57 and 1698-1700 are examined in greater detail.


16 May:  Oscar Gelderblom (Utrecht) and Joost Jonker (Amsterdam)

The Evolution of Financial Markets in the Early Modern Netherlands

To understand the development of financial markets in the Low Countries before the Industrial Revolution we have to look beyond the world of high finance centered around Antwerp and Amsterdam. Empirically, this is difficult, however, because primary sources on ordinary households and small-scale businesses are scarce. We try to remedy this shortcoming through an explicit focus on the demand for four key financial services: payments, loans, savings, and insurance.


The support of the Trevelyan Fund (Faculty of History) is gratefully acknowledged.

 Easter Term 2019 programme - print version


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Seminar programme archive

 Lent Term 2019

Easter Term 2018

Lent Term 2018

Easter Term 2017

Lent Term 2017

Easter Term 2016

Lent Term 2016

Easter Term 2015

Lent Term 2015

Easter Term 2014

Lent Term 2014

Michaelmas Term 2013

Easter Term 2013

Lent Term 2013

Lent Term 2012



The History Faculty welcomes expressions of interest for BA Postdoctoral Fellowships 2019/20. The internal Faculty deadline is 5pm on 16 August 2019.

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Individual Fellowship competition is now open. The internal University deadline is 3pm, 10 September 2019. 

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Upcoming events

Purpose, power and profit: feminist ethical enterprise and cultural industries

Jul 12, 2019

Fellows Drawing Room, Murray Edwards College

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