Food and Eating in Medieval Europe

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Food and Eatin g i n Medieval Europ e
Edited by Martha Carlin and Joel T. Rosenthal

The Hambledon Pres s
London and Rio Grande

Loughboroug h Printed o n acid-free paper and bound in Great Britain by Cambridge Universit y Press .Published by The Hambledo n Pres s 1998 102 Gloucester Avenue. London NW 1 8HX (UK) PO Box 162. Rio Grande. Ohio 45674 (USA) ISBN 1 85285 14 8 1 © The Contributor s 199 8 A description o f this book is available from the British Library and fro m th e Library of Congress Typeset by The Midland s Book Typesetting Company.

1300-1400 8 James A. Hieatt 8 Feedin g Medieva l Cities: Some Historical Approaches 11 Margaret Murphy i x i 5 7 3 3 7 1 7 . c.Contents Figures vi Introduction i Abbreviations xii 1 Th e Feast Hall in Anglo-Saxon Society 1 Marjorie A. Biebel 3 Fas t Food an d Urban Living Standards in Medieval England 2 Martha Carlin 4 Di d the Peasants Really Starve in Medieval England? 5 Christopher Dyer 5 Cannibalis m as an Aspect of Famine in Two English Chronicles 7 Julia Marvin 6 Drive n by Drink? Ale Consumption and the Agrarian Economy of the Londo n Region . Galloway 7 Makin g Sense of Medieval Culinary Records: Much Done. But Much More to Do 10 Constance B. Brown 2 Pilgrim s to Table: Food Consumption in Chaucer's Canterbury Tales 1 Elizabeth M.

vi Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe 3 9 Th e Household of Alice de Bryene. Roi des Queux: Taillevent an d th e Profession o f Medieval Cooking 14 Alan S. Weiss Index 17 5 9 5 . 1412-13 13 ffiona Swabey 10 Queu d u Roi. Weber 11 Medieva l and Renaissanc e Weddin g Banquet s and Other Feasts 15 Susan F.

1300-1400 9 2 Percentag e o f sown grain acreage occupied by individual crops on demesnes in the London region . 1290-1315 and 1375-140 0 9 4 Th e ‘Feeding the City’ project study area 12 5 Simplifie d representatio n o f Von Thünen’s model of land-use zones 12 3 7 8 3 7 . 1290-1315 and 1375-140 0 9 3 Percentag e o f all demesne grain sold (b y volume) represented b y individual crops in the London region .Figures 1 Movemen t of barley and malt prices compared to carpenters' wages .

. Brown in the autum n of 1997. This volume is dedicated t o her memory.The editors record wit h sadness the death of Marjorie A.

and that they are of concern to women as well as to men. and the others are mostly in departments of language and literature . in reinterpreting old answers. The essays that can be categorize d a s falling within th e realm s of historical inquiry and historical methods go far beyond the ‘what happened’ menu of historical inquiry.b y the dictates of our present agenda . e However. of economic geography. That such features of lif e a s food. Whether we are concerned with how wide an economic and geographi c . The essay s here mor e tha n satisf y thes e criteria . of gender an d se x roles. Though abou t hal f the author s ar e i n Histor y Departments o r work as part o f historical research projects.Introduction Medievalists have been slow to turn their professional eyes toward certain aspects o f ‘everyday life ’ that invariabl y engage mos t o f u s fa r mor e frequently an d deepl y tha n d o th e familia r academi c an d course oriented concentrations that lean toward the complexities of constitutional government or the transmission of high culture. and o f popular culture . They delve into questions of e very reasons why such concerns and topic s are no w so interesting and why they are being so avidly studied. that there has been a significant swing of the scholarly pendulum in the direction of a serious investigation o f the commonplace . with perhaps a touch o f pride. and today we can say. these ar e . such a simple distinction by conventional disciplines is far from a reliable guide to the work and ideas they have presented. Among the noteworthy ‘events’ or focal points and institutions of ordinary life we can rank such long neglected commonplaces as food. and t o the poo r and relativel y silent as well as to the rich and privileged around whom the written sources have generally clustered. clothing and sex are virtually universals. and thei r various blends and melds of the records of medieval life illuminate our current interest in re-asking old questions. clothing and sex (which we now talk of in terms of sexual activity and o f sexuality). In recent years students of the European middl e ages have moved to correct some of this long record of professional bias and oversight. are certainly among the reasons why they wer once ignored.

if aske d a t al l for suc h a distan t period . who wa s responsible no t onl y for producin g th e elaborate meals that fed the household but also for organizing and controlling the labour and fuel and raw foodstuffs needed to keep a great kitchen running. we are impressed by the persistence an d ubiquit y of a few basic themes about social life. and o f festival and carnival. The final products . was a social process. while Constance Hieatt alert s u s t o th e intricacie s o f interpretin g an d classifyin g th e thousands of surviving medieval recipes that were collected and used in great households . or in what people actuall y ate when the y finished work and had a chance to si t down. A magnate' s cook . The ‘literature’ essays also diverge widely. economic. o f the application an d embodiment o f specialize d knowledg e designe d t o giv e pleasure. of prescribed and hierarchica l publi c behavior. or at the music and ritua l tha t surrounde d festiv e eatin g o n ceremonia l occasion s in late medieval Europe.what was served at the table . t o enhance th e statu s of their makers . o r ho w successfu l suc h foo d productio n an d distributio n mechanisms really turned ou t t o be. Alan Weber offer s a case stud y of how a high positio n i n a royal kitchen and upward mobility could g o hand i n glove. an d t o link a basic physical need with social display and symbolic representations. political and cultural material that has to be introduced int o the equation. Preparing food. Questions once asked only by geographers or economists . as in Marjorie Brown's essay. at virtually all levels of society and o f the culinar y range.can be thought o f as the edible en d product s o f a craft. ar e no w part o f th e working agenda o f historians.x Food and Eating in Medieval Europe arc of food productio n ha d t o be focused towar d London t o feed th e teeming metropolis . was a powerful figure in the prestigious worlds of hearth and hall. we can se e th e rang e o f social. Whether we are looking at the Anglo-Saxon hal l as a locus of eating an d drink ing and socia l intercourse. the steps of the food chain constitute a complex ladder of social and economic interaction. From agricultura l decision s abou t which grains t o so w to th e fina l presentation o f fantastic pasties and arcane confections at the table. and ver y often it was a social process that incorporated elaborat e elements of ritual. as in Susan Weiss’s study. a s in th e wor k of Margaret Murphy and Jim Gal loway. a s in Christopher Dyer' s essay. and the y serve to carry us from som e o f the har d realitie s of food productio n an d consumptio n patterns int o what we can thin k o f as extra-nutritional aspect s of this basic human endeavour . Medieval societ y certainly was one i n whic h categories o f skil l an d knowledge and mysterie s of crafts and guild s were taken very seriously. as Martha Carlin tell s us. The whole tale of how .

with few visible seams.Introduction x i food was prepared an d eate n clearl y extends far beyond a simple bodily process in which we must engage in order to preserve life and strength . at one extreme. Upper-class lif e an d courtl y life wer e partl y defined and se t apar t b y their framing of social eating. into the world of ceremony and status .were bound up with the hierarchy of the table. ffiona Swabey shows how a great lady's table. Julia Marvin' s essay relates biblical and medieva l readings about dearth an d starvatio n to the permissibl e ranges of human response . ‘you are what you eat’ was a good deal more than a cliche. remaine d th e fixed star of the firmament . The essay by Elizabeth Biebel reminds us of the moral significance that was logically attached t o kinds of food eaten (o r rejected) as well as to occasions for . From a morbid or hypnotic fascination with dearth and famine.and poetry-bedecke d wedding feast or political banquet at the other. we have a broad spectru m of behaviour wherein th e table . tha t dietary distinctions marked social class just as such distinctions were also part of the regular variations that marked the cycles of the seasons and of the ecclesiastical calendar. Not al l of th e symbolis m that surrounde d cookin g an d eatin g was spiritual. an d o n comple x rhythms of regiona l and provincia l culture.a s well as that to which men and women hoped eventuall y to come . were hardly likely to pass unnoticed in a society whose basic ceremony of religious renewal and purification involved th e sacramen t o f th e Eucharis t an d th e ingestio n o f th e transubstantiated Host. and a good man y of the messages about th e arrangements of this world . The ritua l an d symboli c aspects of consumption. Furthermore. can be read a s a text on household management . for every man an d woman who drew a knife to cut bread an d who shared sal t or ale with another. Everyone came to realize. At the same time we should remember tha t what we can identify an d elaborate fo r the topmos t layers of society regarding th e links between eating and the social structure was also true. beside or in additio n to those of sociability and hospitality. to the theatricalit y of the music. with appropriate variations for class and culture . Sitting at tabl e an d feedin g others ar e readily seen a s an endles s cycle of social interaction wherein practical matters merged. with bot h it s food an d it s festivities. In a world that relied on humoural theor y to explain both th e unity of the cosmo s and th e nature o f individual temperament s an d health. a t some earl y point in life . days of plenty on earth were outward manifestations o f divine approbation. on the social role ope n t o a powerful widow . and the elaborate apparatu s on which it rested. just as those of hunger spok e of heavenly anger an d a loss of grace.

xii Food

an d Eating in Medieval Europe

eating (or fasting). Personality, gender distinctions and the line between purity and impurity could be traced, to some extent, by a study of consumption patterns and predilections. How one sought to blend personal style and choice into the larger rhythms of the world might be revealed, both in terms of health and o f moral disposition, by an examination o f one's shopping lis t and collectio n o f pots and pans . Martha Carlin Joe l T. Rosenthal


BL Britis EETS Earl OED Oxfor PRO Publi

h Library , Londo n y English Tex t Society d Englis h Dictionar y c Recor d Office , Londo n

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The Feast Hall in Anglo-Saxon Society Marjorie A. Brown
The Anglo-Saxon feast hall was at the heart of early English society. Here people met t o celebrate their victories , t o proclaim socia l bond s wit h one anothe r an d t o shar e th e product s o f the land . Feast-hal l scenes frequently appea r i n Ol d Englis h literature , notabl y i n heroi c poem s such as Beowulf, i n which much of the action occurs within a magnificent royal hall . I n poetr y adapte d fro m Christia n rathe r tha n Germani c legendary sources, the protagonists may also meet within the mead halls, but th e ton e of these meetings tends to be darker, even demonic. Th e shifting literary representatio n o f the feast hall invites an examinatio n of its multiple roles in the Anglo-Saxon world. Some physica l remain s o f feast halls hav e been foun d i n England . Archeological excavation s at Yeavering have uncovered the trace s of a royal hall eighty feet long and forty feet wide, with plank walls set eight feet into the ground to support a high roof. 1 At Cheddar, a hall seventytions made at the Sutton Hoo site over the last half-century have disclosed a ship rather than a hall, archeologists have found kingly furnishings, including silver-gilt mounts for drinking cups and horns and a harp tha t could have been played at feasts. As important as the material evidence may be, however , the description s o f feast halls found in Anglo-Saxo n language and literature present a fuller picture of the hall's importance. The Old English language has an extensive vocabulary of terms to denote
the feast hall and its furnishings. Terms for the feast hall's servants, provifive feet in length held gatherings in the ninth century.2 While the excava-

sions, and eve n its decor are formed from th e roo t words œrne, reced an d heall. The wor d sele, meanin g ‘hall’ or ‘house’ , i s the basi s for severa l compound words . Some of these compounds describe the people of the hall, such as the selesecg or the seleðegn, the 'hall-retainer'.3 The noun seleJames Campbell, ed. , Th e Anglo-Saxons (Oxford , 1982) , p. 57. Ann Hagen , A Handbook o f Anglo-Saxon Food: Processing and Consumption (Pinner , Middlesex, 1992 ; reprinted 1993) , p . 79. 3 Th e Wanderer, lin e 34 ; Beowulf, lin e 1794 .
2 1

remembers his happiness in terms of the hall and its generous lord: Hwær cwom mearg? Hwæ r cwom mago? Hwær cwom maÞÞumgyfa? Hwær cwom symbla gesetu? Hwæ r sindon seledreamas ? Eala beorht bune! Eala byrnwiga! Eala Þeodne s Þrym ! (line s 92-95a) (Where ha s gone the steed? Where has gone the man? Where has gone the giver of treasure? Where ha s gone the place of the banquets? Where ar e the pleasures of the hall? Alas. Bread was an important constituent of a feast. Kevin Crossley-Holland. 11-13. Servants' wages and land-rents might be paid in so many loaves of bread. along with meat. 228. a title deriving from the compound hlaf-weard. o r ‘bread-maker’. flies into a warm. ii.2 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe dream. 6 Hagen. Handbook o f Anglo-Saxon Food.. 60. We use a related ter m toda y when we speak of the supporte r o f a family a s the ‘breadwinner’. The wanderer. 5 The words denoting the lord and the lady of the hall derive from th e duty of feeding their people. 1936) . demonstrate th e emotions that communal feasting might evoke in poetic reminiscence. for a moment. pp. 'hall-joy. 4 A well-known episod e recounted i n Bede’s Historia eccksiastica als o depicts th e pleasure s of the hal l in compariso n t o th e harsh world beyond it s doors. ‘Bread dough’ is one possible answer t o riddle 45 in the Exeter Book . Th e Exeter Book (New : York and London .6 The bread-eaters at the 4 (lines 23-24) ‘The Ruin’ George Philip Krapp and Elliott Van Kirk Dobbie. Th e Anglo-Saxon World: An Anthology (Oxfor d an d Ne w York. 5 Bede. A priest illustrates th e transitor y natur e of human existence by comparing life to a sparrow that. An old English word for ‘dependant’. 13. p. well-lit hall. . alas. th e lad y was a hlafdige. a standard Anglo-Saxon unit of food. in the poem of the same name in the Exeter Book. hlafœta. alas. ' an d th e adjectiv e seledreorig. She notes in a section on ‘bread’. c. meodoheal l moni g mondream a ful l oÞÞæt Þæt onwende wyr d seo swiÞe. literall y means ‘bread-eater’. that loaves of bread might be sized: Edward the Elder left two hundred larg e and one hundred small loaves in his will. where the king sits dining with his thegns. trans. or ‘bread-guardian’. and the n vanishes again into the winter storm raging outside. the majesty of the prince! ) In a similar elegiac tone. 1982). Historia ecclesiastica. 83. p . fish and game. 'sa d a t th e los s of a hall'. p. eds. the poet of ‘Th Ruin characterize the vanished e ’ s joys of the city : ‘Many a mead-hall was full o f delights / unti l fate th e mighty altered it’. the armoured warrior. Similarly. the gleaming chalice. The Old English lord was a hlaford.

159 : for gesiðmæge n syml e æghwæ r eodor æðelinga 7 forman full e t o frean hon d ricene geræcan (line s 88-91a) Translation by S. 1982 . (lines 44b-48) (He wil l lack nothing . as hops were no t used in England until th e fifteent h century . Exeter Book. where th e selegyst o r 'hall-guest ' migh t si t o n th e medubenc. p. Bradley . p. Exeter Book. reprinte d 1987). ‘beer-hall’.J. o r beorsetl. pp. ealusele. bear probably was a typ e o f fermented frui t drin k (Hagen. Fo r commentary on the potential power a royal woman might wield throug h her forma l presentatio n of drink. 2 2 (1988) . . The husband sends word to the woman 'who swore oaths together ' wit h him when they shared th e mead-hall s saying that he will lack for nothing. Anglo-Saxon Poetry (Londo n an d Rutland . which begin with th e king : 'she mus t always and everywher e greet first the chie f of those princes and instantly offer the chalice to her lord's hand'. their youn g warriors and seasone d fighters. 83) .8 The noble lad y of the hal l appears i n a more symboli c fashion in the elegy called 'The Husband's Message'. Anglo-Saxon World. ænges ofer eorÞa n eorlgestreon a Þeodnes dohtor gi f he pin beneah ofer eal d gebeot ince r twega . if he possesses you. if she will join him. 'wine-hall'. neither horses nor riches nor joy in the mead-hall nor any of the noble treasures on earth .) 'The Husband' s Message' . p. The name s o f intoxicating beverage s als o identif y th e hal l i n suc h compound term s a s beorsele. Providing drink to the hall-guests was the mark of a king and th e duty of a queen. 170-203 . p. . an d trans. Instead. Crossley Holland. i n Krap p an d Dobbie . 8 'Maxim s I': Krapp and Dobbie . eds. Enright's 'Lady With a Mead-Cup: Ritual.A. see Michael J. 'mead bench'.7 Drinking was a major part of the festivities in the feast hall. Vermont. 58 . Beor was not th e hopped beverage drunk today. an d winsele. 227 . Handbook o f Anglo-Saxon Food. and their counsellors . O daughter of the prince . ærestgegretan. Fruhmittelalterliche Studien. 348. ed . 9 ni s him wilna gad ne meara ne maðma n e meododreama.9 Through share d eating and drinking the hall brings together society.The Feast Hall in Anglo-Saxon Society 3 feast were th e lor d an d lady' s kin. Presumably she will bring th e hall joy with her. eds . 'neither horses not riches nor joy in the mead-hall' . A set of gnomic verses from th e Exeter Book describes the queen's hospitable responsibilities. Grou p Cohesion and Hierarch y in the Germani c Warband'. p .. 'beer-seat'. with the kin g an d th e quee n a t its heart t o generate pleasur e with their gifts . 'ale-hall' .

trans . 181 . preside ove r banquets. a Christian e concept supported b y Alvin Lee . presents tale s of famous heroes an d thei r deeds . or 'hart'. Therefore th e hall may b a manifestation of paradise on earth. Connecticut and London . who say s 'the newl y created hall is in paradisal harmony with heaven'. literally the 'shaper' . 1972). Th e scop's storie s are powerful enough to compel his audience t o action. s m on mod beam n wolde n gewyrcea n æfregefrunon. 'I t came into his mind'.12 In this paradigm. The scop' s use of the Genesi s material recalls how the first recorded Anglo-Saxon poe t mad e hi s reputation b y turning th e Creatio n stor y into Old English verse. and therei n h e would give to young and old such as God gave him' (line s 67-73). presen t lavish gift s t o their retainers an d pou r ou t mea d for their warriors and wise men. Wealhtheow . the monster's hatred for the people of Heorot begins. pæt healreced hata medoærn mice l me 10 Hi . He was Cædmon who. as Bede writes. Klaeber (Lexington .11 Within the decorated walls. Beowulf an d the Fight at Finnsburgh. shares in th e Creatio n story . Th e Guest-Hall o f Eden: Four Essays o n th e Design o f Ol d English Poetry (New Haven. wa shamed . Grendel.10 The hall rises rapidly. when the outcas t Grendel hear s th e soun d o f the scop singing the Creatio n story in the hall. too.. p. the Beowulf poet says . p. 1950) . who. th e two creation episodes connect the earthly hall with the garden of Eden. The peopl e in the feas t hall als o serve as an audience for the musi c and poetr y of the scop. line 82a). F . 3rd edn. 'that h e would command me n t o construct a hall. Since th e scop commence s hi s son g shortl y afte r th e Beowulf poet ha s described the making of Heorot. ed.4 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe The best-know n literary example of the Anglo-Saxon feast hall is the hall named Heorot. 'high and horn-gabled' (lin e 82a). Grendel is the transgresso r exiled by God fro m paradise . Hrothgar and hi s queen. and the scop's ability with the Creator's. built by the order o f King Hrothgar i n the opening verses of Beowulf. Bradley . because th e poet identifies him as a descendan t of Cain who is doomed t o walk the earth under God' s curse. Massachusetts . Þon [n] e yldo beam ond Þær on innan eallgedælan geongum ond ealdum . Lee . For instance. 11 'Hea h on d horngeap ' (Klaeber . a mead-hall larger than th e children o f men had ever heard of. swyl c him Go d seald (lines 67b-72 ) All Old Englis h passages of Beowulf ar e fro m Beowulf an d the Fight at Finnsburgh. 413. 12 Alvi n A . like the Beowulf poet. Anglo-Saxon Poetry. which explain s his rage upon hearing the scop's descriptio n o f its beauties .

. promisin g he r tha t ' I shal l achiev e a deed o f manly courage o r else have lived to see in this mead-hall m y ending day'. gifts and pledges. o p. Historia ecclesiastica. gif him Þyslicu helmas ond heard sweord .. 13 Although th e Beowulf poet compare s Heoro t t o a Christian paradise. Beowulf’s boasting. the hero who has come t o rid her husband' s hal l of the monster Grendel . the queen seat s herself next to the king. 14 Ic ðæt mæl geman. however. 14 The warrior Ælfwine use s a similar formula when. 1975). the Germa n war-ban d or comitatus. Þearfgelumpe. H e als o replies formally . 24 . When Wealhtheow first meets Beowulf. Ic gefremman scea l endedæg e gebidan. An important activity in the hal l is the sealin g of bonds betwee n royalty and thei r followers. a heavenly messenger appeared t o Cædmon while he wa s tending animal s in th e stabl e an d commande d tha t Cædmo n sing about 'the Creation of all things'. through the giving of drink.him who gave us these rings . Þonne we geheton ussu m hlaforde in biorsele Þeus pas beagas geaf . iv.. when we promised ou r lor d i n th e beer-hall ' t o suppor t him. Beowulf. Instea d Cædmo n withdrew to his home whenever the harp was passed to him in the hall. One night . 46. i s typical of the feast hal l an d represent s th e warrior's pledge t o his lord o r lady.that we would repay him for the wararms if a need like this befell hi m . excessive as it might seem to contemporary readers . (line s 2633-38a) ('I remembe r tha t time we drank mead . Talbot Donaldson. Þærwe medu Þegun. After Beowulf himsel f become s a king. (lines 636a-38) eorlic ellen oÞðe on Þisse meoduhealle minn Well-pleased. c. in other ways the hall seems more Germanic than Christian. E.The Feast Hall in Anglo-Saxon Society 5 by his inability to compos e song s a t th e feas t e helmets and the hard swords. From that time forward Cædmon turned scripture int o religious verses in Old English. one o f his me n remind s th e other s that they owe loyalty to him by recalling 'that time we drank mead. when we promised ou r lor d i n th e beer-hall . Tus (Ne w York and London. ed . Joseph F. in th e hea t o f the battl e o f Mal- 13 Bede. sh e pours mead int o hi s cup an d bid s him welcome in a formal speech. Þæt we him ða guðgetawa gylda n woldon. ' Trans.

Exeter Book. who slay s a companion o n th e mea d benc h wit h his sword."') 16 'Breat bolgenmod beodgeneatas' (line 1713). a helmet. Once again. Massachusetts. The horses are led into the feast hall by order of the king so that all may see the hero's rewards. ed . Beowul f receive s a golden standard. when from ou r seat we heroes in hall would put up pledges about tough fight ing. 16 A poem calle d 'Th e Fortunes of Men' also describes an 'irascible ale-swiller'.6 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe don. then . including a rich necklace and a mail-shirt. ' (lines 211-15) (Bradley. 1935. gifstol. spoke out an d valiantl y declared: "Let us call to mind those declarations we often uttered over mead. 'beer-drinking' . haeled on healle. 1963). ponne we on bence beo t ahofon.17 OE passage fro m Th e Battl e o f Maldon'. who 'kille d hi s table-companions ' (lin e 1713). eds. h 'Gemunad pa maela . 525 : 'JElfwine. Thus th e hall is the sit e of the redistributio n o f wealth within the com munity as well as the locu s of societal bonds. The Beowulfpoet announce s that one of Beowulf s chief virtues is that he neve r slays any of his companions while drunk on th e mead benches . I n return for killin g Grendel . Queen Wealhtheow also offers Beowulf precious gifts. Th e greates t triumph s i n Beowulf are marked by the spectacular . land an d a hall of his own. 17 Krapp and Dobbie. In return Beowulf give s many of these treasure s to his own king when the hero returns home . Marjori e Anderson and Blanche Colton Williams (New York. h e ask s his comrades t o remembe r th e pledge s the y uttered t o their lord ove r their mead.15 Sharing mea d wit h th e comitatus in th e hal l i s not th e onl y way in which th e ruler secures loyalty. i n Ol d English Handbook. now it can be proved who is brave. and a man 'craze d by mead'. public and lavis h presentation o f gifts fro m the king's throne in the feast hall. irrum ealow osan (line 49) . 15 . In contrast . Anglo-Saxon Poetry. A feast is sometimes referred t o as gebeorscipe. these exchanges take place in the feast hall. The kin g then bestow s upon Beowul f an heirloo m sword . who commits suicide (line 52) . and drunke n me n maybe violent. reprinted Cambridge. the alcoholic pledging done by the hall's inhabitants may have a negativ e impac t on thei r relationships . As the wanderer indicates. nu maeg cunnian hwacenesy. known as a 'gift-seat'. th e poe t describe s a bad king . 155 . p . Despite the rich gifts. p e we oft ac t meodo spraecon. meodugal. e o n elle n spraec: ^Elfwine p a cwaed . a mail-shirt an d eigh t horse s wit h golde n bridle s and jewelled saddles . p. a good king distributes ric h gift s i n hi s hall . Heremod . ymb e heard gewinn.

hanging o n th e walls of their lair. 'I>onn e wses JDCO S medohal o n morgen tid / drihtsel e dreorfah' (line s 484-85a). whom the poe t ironically terms a selegyst. At the botto m o f the mer e Beowulf finds Grendel's mother in a nidseleor 'hostil e hall' (lin e 1513). thu s turning the hall-treasure against its owner. The Beowulfpoet als o contrasts the dwellings of the monsters with the feast halls of men. pp. whom he devours in a ghoulish parody of the feasts held by the king. fights a drago n tha t attack s his kingdo m afte r a golden cu p i s stolen from its hoard. Grendel's attacks invert the pleasure s of the hal l in othe r ways as well. In th e secon d sectio n o f the poem . 18 Beowulf predicts that Heorot will eventually fall in flames. carved with runes . yet 'in the morning this mead-hall was a hall shining with blood'. th e struggl e i s vividly shown in feast-related images: the gold-adorned mea d benches go flying and. th e buildin g resounds with Grendel's wailing. line 769). The shining blood contrast s grimly with the gleaming decorations of the hall. 'hall-guest ' (lin e 1545). to a hall. Beowul f uses th e swor d t o kil l Grendel' s mothe r an d t o cu t off Grendel's head. which the poe t calls 'terribl e drin k fo r th e Danes ' (literall y ealuscerwen. she sits on Beowulf. When Beowulf wrestles with th e monster . dark. Durin g the struggle . like the treasure s kept in the halls of men. Grendel and hi s mother live in a cold. Th e Grende l famil y keep s a n ancien t sword . Images of the hall reddened with blood and strewn with bodies appea r i n man y Old Englis h poem s as evidence of the furiou s feuds that could tear apart royal families and their kingdoms. The 'guest ' rewards his 'hostess' by slaying her. for OE text and notes .The Feast Hall in Anglo-Saxon Society 7 Drunkenness may contribute t o violent tendencies already present in the hall-guests. however. th e enrage d warriors fail to keep the peace in their shared hall because the y cannot forget their old enmities. wracked by the same sort of blood-feud that destroyed the hall at Finnsburgh. Describing the horror. deathly mere o n th e edg e o f civilisation. Although bot h group s ar e relate d b y marriage. Beowulf . no w a venerable king. Beowulf an d theFight at Finnsburgh. . The poetic fragment know n as the 'Figh t at Finnsburgh' tell s of a blood-feud tha t erupts into a five-da battle with one side valiantly defending the door s y . rather tha n the song of the scop. a hringsele or ring-hal l (lin e 3128) . 'ale-sharing' . Th e most immediate threat to the hall. The dragon's dwelling is described poetically as an eorbsele or earth-hal l (lin e 2410) . an d a 18 See Klaeber. Hroth gar tell s Beowulf that fo r year s Hrothgar's warrior s had boaste d ove r beer how they would defeat Grendel. comes from Grendel's nightly attack on the sleeping warriors of the hall. 245-53.

rather tha n to point to heaven. Holofernes invites his senior commanders to attend a banque t wit h spendidly prepared dishe s and bowl s brimming with intoxicating liquor. Judith don s the festive clothing of a married woman. but remains in a separate 'guest-hall'. taking along a bag of kosher food so that she may keep the Jewish dietary laws. echoes the building of Heorot at the beginning of the poem. adorns herself with all her jewellery. He is so stupefied . The construction of Beowulf s barrow. does not attend. The demoralized Assyrian s flee from Israel. left withou t the protectio n o f their hlaford. Beowulf s tomb exists to remind the people of his fame on earth. However. The dragon's body is pushed over the cliff into the sea. a 'secret hall' (lin e 2320). which recounts the tal e of a brave and piou s Jewish widow who save s her cit y from a besieging Assyrian army. surrounded by a splendid wall devised by skilled workers. becaus e some o f the manuscrip t is missing . A different representation of the feast hall appears in the poem Judith. Beowulf s people. The halls portrayed in Beowulf generally follow an Anglo-Saxon paradigm derived from Germanic myths of heroic warriors. Her grea t beauty captivates the Assyrian general. no on e will profit from th e dragon's hoard. burying the dragon's treasure with the king's remains. Her absenc e marks a significant chang e from th e biblical version . mor e reminiscent of Ragnarok than th e Da y of Judgement wit h its hope fo r the future. Holofernes. using the ba g to smuggle the grisly trophy out of the camp.ho w much i s not certain . tha t sh e i s able t o decapitat e hi m wit h his own sword an d t o take the hea d bac k to her city . In th e biblica l version.8 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe dryhtsele dyrnne. In contrast to the treasures that Beowulf had received earlier. which has a curse set upon it. The mourners build Beowulf a tomb on the cliff. ending the hall-joys of the hero's people. sprawls on a pile of fur rug s and lies to the dazzled Holofernes about his chances of success with her an d with her besiege d city. Judith is derived fro m th e Ol d Testamen t boo k o f th e same name. The Old English poetic form of Judith's story begins abruptly. which is bound togethe r with Beowulf i n MS Cotton Vitellius A XV. at a banquet. As the poem commences. in fact . At the end o f their fight. who has been in the Assyrian camp for several days. . andjudith enjoys an honoured old age as the saviour of her people. predic t tha t thei r foe s wil l soon attack and disperse the kingdom. Thi s endin g seem s mor e Germani c tha n Christian . while Beowulf s corpse burns on a funeral pyre. enchanted swords and monstrous opponents. in which she dresses in her most seductive clothing. gysterne (line 40). and goes into the enemy camp. Judith. both opponents are dead.

from torhtan maegd (lin e 43) . modig 7 medugal manod e geneahhe bencsittende. In another Old English All Old Englis h quotation s fro m Judith ar e take n fro m Judith. exclude Judith from th e feast? An answer may appear in th e poet's descriptio n o f the banquet . plied hi s retainers with wine until they lay unconscious. Anglo-Saxon Poetry. p. Holofernes is. 21 Trans. to be eternally wrapped in snakes and fiery torment.. should be brough t to his tent for hi s use. the stern-minde d dispenser of treasure. then. 497 .20 At the en d o f the banquet . 21 By the tim e she arrives. dead drunk and shortly thereafter dies when Judith. Holoferne s command s tha t Judith. They drink excessively. unaware that they are 'doomed' . So the whole day long the villain. whom the poet calls a 'noble virgin' rathe r tha n a widow. . 1952 . Exeter. hu s e stidmoda styrmd e 7 gylede. Bradley. like his men. p. The descriptio n o f the feas t shows Holofernes and his men to be debauched and lecherous drunkards headed for doom. Why. insolent and craze d with mead. revise d an d reprinted . hlyned e 7 dynede. 20 Trans. calling upon the Trinity for aid. |)2et mihten fira beam feorra n gehyran . ibid. The sou l of Holofernes sinks under th e ground o n its way to hell. Timme r (London. H e characterize s the gatherin g as 'insolent men' who are the general's 'confederate s in evil'. whereas Judith by staying apar from their uproarious banquet. Holofernes also behaves badly at the celebration : Hloh 7 hlydde. oferdrencte hi s dugude ealle swylc e hie waeron deade geslegene (lines 23-31 )19 He laughed and bawled and roared and made a racket so that the children of men coul d hear from fa r away how the stern-minde d man bellowe d an d yelled. and frequentl y exhorte d the guests on th e benches to enjoy themselve s well. Bradley.The Feast Hall in Anglo-Saxon Society 9 The presenc e o f noblewomen was certainly a feature o f the AngloSaxon hall . 1978) . a s shown by Queen Wealhtheow' s appearance i n Beowulf. ed . decapitates him. BJ . Swa se inwidda ofe r ealne daeg dryhtguman sine drenct e mid wine. t remains virginal and undefiled . th e whol e o f his retinue drun k a s though the y ha d been struck dead. 19 . swidmod sinces brytta o 5 f>ae t hie o n swima n lagon. J^ae t hi gebaerdon wel. 497 .

23 'Ic him byrlade / wroh t of wege' (line s 486b—87a). fasting and chastity. evilhalls are balanced against the 'good' halls and the communal rituals HALLS ARE BALANCED AGANIST THE 'GOOD' HALLS AND THE COMMUNAL RITUALS that take place in them. Trans. in Thejunius Manuscript. th e villains suffer a similar fate . as in the Lati n version . or that they would receive upon the beer-bench rings and embossed gold in the wine-hall. 318. ibid. Bradley.) Cynewulf also credits the violence that often erupts in feast halls to demonic influence whe n a devil confesses to Juliana tha t h e ha s ofte n encour aged me n drun k wit h bee r t o rene w old grievances . the y go to hell. ibid.10 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe poem base d o n the passio of St Juliana. (lines 683-88a)22 (The thane s in that dark dwelling. Trans. 314. George Philip Krapp (Ne w Yor k and London . 1931).. p. One reaso n fo r the demonization of the hall in Judith and Juliana may be that the Christian virtues of the time include d sobriety. the flock of retainers in that deep pit. ed . 24 'Christ and Satan' . 1955. The devi l boast s that 'I have served them strif e out of the wine goblet'. eve n thoug h the devi l tempted him t o show his power by turning stones into bread. J)se ofer beorsetle beaga aspplede gold. Rosemary Woolf (London . 22 . just as the Last Supper was th model for Christia n e feasts. all of which were codified in rules for churchmen an d laymen. In heroic poems such as Beowulf. revised and reprinted . ed . Eleusius . Bradley. The Ol d English poem Christ and Satan describes how Christ set an example of restraint for good Christians by fasting for forty days in the wilderness. p. 1977). n jDa m jDystran ha m n {Da m neolan scraef e feohgestealde t hy in winsele s J)egon. Rather than simpl y drowning. which Cynewulf compares t o a feast hall: Ne JDorfta n ja a Jaegnas i seo geneatscolu i to |)amfrumgaree witedra wenan. Th e poet Cynewulf adds a new twist to the fate of Eleusius and hi s men.23 These example s of hellish feas t hall s and th e demon s who populat e them ma y be a logical development o f the 'hostil e halls' tha t Grende l and his mother occupy. Juliana wins sainthood for her refusa l t o sacrifice t o pagan idol s and t o wed a pagan nobleman . however..24 Christ's fast set the pattern for the forty-day Lenten fast. lines 667-74. had no reason t o look expectantly to the overlord for the appointed treasures. All Old Englis h quotation s from Juliana ar e take n fro m Cynewulf's 'Juliana'. Exeter.

28 . Anglo-Saxon World. sleacnes.28 Alcuin of York. 25 In the conclusio n o f Th e Dream o f the Rood. 197 . 68. to remain together..The Feast Hall i n Anglo-Saxon Society 1 1 By feeding hi s disciple s on brea d an d win e representing hi s body. an d Lazarus dies of hunger a t the gate. Fittingly. Let your use of clothes and foo d b e moderate. Bradley. The servant s of Christ in th e Anglo-Saxon monastic dining hall di d not lack for food. yrre. .26 In contrast to the heavenly feast. injunius Manuscript. Krapp. (lines 17-18) 'Daniel'. Crossley-Holland. ibid. 204 . writing to Ethelred. some are inundated with delicacies and feasting like Dives clothed i n purple. 29 Trans. after the Vikings had raided the monastery at Lindisfarne. migh t al l appear a t th e worldly dining table. 27 Homily 2 0 of the Vercelli Book lists the eigh t capital sins : ofermodignes. p. king of Northumbria. p . Where is brotherly love? . 'anger'. either the church . and Trans. You are the corner-ston e th e builder s once discarded. for example. 'vainglory' . bae r is singal blis (lines 140b-41) Trans. the master architect. th e dreame r ha s a vision o f heaven 'where the people of God are seated at the feast in eternal bliss'. druncn e gedohtas. in your firm embrace. 'sloth'. the peopl e of Israel lose their power because 'at their feasting. th e eigh t mortal Anglo-Saxon sins. Crossley-Holland. hie wlenco anwo d ae t winpege deofoldaedum. gitsung. pride and drunke n thoughts invaded them with devilish deeds'. gluttony could. 26 bae r is dryhtnes fol c geseted to symle . unrotnes. the unbreakabl e flint . 'gluttony'. Anglo-Saxon Poetry. p. to lock together the length y walls. 187-88 . accuses the English of bringing God's punishment upon themselves throug h thei r callou s behaviour. including pride . or heaven.27 In the Old English poem Daniel. forlyger. The hal l is the world that needs the car e of Christ. th e world i n toto. and idelwuldor. the first Advent lyric of Christ /celebrates Christ as the 'cornerstone' of the 'great hall'. 'melancholy'. 25 . . but the amount and type were strictly controlled. 'Som e labou r unde r a n enormity of clothes. . lead t o all other sins . 'avarice'. others perish with cold. It becomes yo u well to stand a s the head of the great hall . understandably. 'fornication'.' 29 Becaus e humanity' s first sin was the ac t of eating the frui t o f the forbidden tree . glutton y and anger . trans. locking it together in his strong arms. ed . . Christ supplanted th e rol e o f the hlaford a s bread-provider and shifte d the settin g of the feas t from specifi c earthly locations to more spiritual sites. gifernes. 'pride' . Crossley-Holland. Th e Anglo-Saxon World. pp .

33 Crossley-Holland. a late seventh-century king of Kent.30 Monastic eating habits ar e describe d i n jElfric's Colloquy.F. pp . 'for if she had drun k she would have slept with an adulterer' ('na m si Judith bibisset. (Ne w York.12 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe a devout monk might never eat meat or drink wine. 31 Trans. 34 Hagen. who might lose their chastity otherwise. Handbook o f Anglo-Saxon Food. Bede chronicles jEpeldryd's moderate eating habits in Historia ecclesiastica. 136-43 . Webb.F. 1988). He eats with moderation 'a s befits a monk . J. revised ed. Webb.33 To d o penanc e fo r thei r sins .34 t Temperance seemed t o be particularl y important for women. Likewise. pp. nourished himsel f by nibbling an onion. iv. (New York. B y her moderation . credits her sobriet y for her escap e fro m th e Assyrians. marking the acceptanc e of fasting for th e lait y as well as monastics. 31 The account s o f saintly Englishmen an d wome n ofte n stress their abstemiou s behaviour. bu t ha d t o abstain durin g Len t an d Adven t (Hagen . in chapter 21 . . 30 . ed. 94-95). 32 The commen t abou t Wilfrid's drinkin g habits appears in the Life o f Wilfrid. revised ed . i n which a young novice says that he still eats meat 'for I am a child living under the rod'. Wilfrid also distinguished himsel f by washing every night in holy water. i n his last days. Se e 'Eddius Stephanus: Life of Wilfrid'. are these: 'If anyone gives meat to his household in time of fasting. Among the laws of Wihtred. Farmer trans . Ambrose. J. . la y persons migh t fast o n water . 227 . for I am no glutton'. in The Age of Bede. Monks and nuns were allowed to eat pinguedo. a type of meat drippin g or lard . ed. Farmer. 39-102. except for sick brethren an d the children in the monastery. and Cuthbert . 1988) . c. and drink s only water o r ale. Crossley-Holland . Bede mentions many food miracles performed b y Cuthbert as well as making this comment abou t the sain t in chapter 6 of his life: see 'Bede: Life of Cuthbert'. dormisse t cu m adultero') . in Th e Age of Bede. pp. winter or summer. D.H. h e adds . If a slave eat it of his own accord [he is to pay] six shillings or be flogged' . Bede says that Cuthbert 'was ready to suffer hunger and thirs t in this life in order t o enjoy th e banquets of the next'. ^{Deldryd restricted herself to one mea l per day . p . Wilfrid o f Ripon neve r drank a ful l glass at the dining table. Handbook o f Anglo-Saxon Food. 19. commenting on the story of Judith. 'th e fasting of one woman defeated an innumerable army of drunken men' The Benedictine Rule forbade meat-eating. The wealthy migh pay others to fast for them. green herbs an d coars e brea d o r restric t themselve s to one mea l a day and offer the rest to the poor. Th e Anglo-Saxon World. p .H. 27. he is to redeem both freeman and slave with healsfang [one-tenth of one's wergild]. Th e Anglo-Saxon World. pp. trans. 32 English legal codes specified fast days and th e penalties for breakin g them. even when alone. . b y his biographer Eddiu s Stephanus. 105-82. D.

7. however. p . Judit fast s in accordanc e with Jewish h dietary laws. 741: 'Itaque unius mulieris jejunium innumeros stravit exercitus ebriorum' (Therefore the abstinence of one woman overcame innumerable [men ] o f an army of inebriates). food and joy. for example. h dormisset cum adultero' (Fo r if Judith had drunk. ibid. the Christian concept of si n seem s t o hav e altere d th e wa y in whic h som e poet s describe d banqueting scenes. The hlafordv/ho guards the bread in Beowulf i s a secular lord . Crossley-Holland. her absenc e fro m th e feas t hall keeps her unpolluted . 231 . who as part o f the Trinit y dispenses heavenly rather tha n secula r bread. The Anglo-Saxon World. the victorious English return t o Wessex. she would have slept with an adulterer). col. the 'grey coated eagle' and the 'wol f in the wood' to devour the corpses with relish. Thus. even in manuscripts that may b contemporary. but i n Judith he ha s become Christ .. in the Ol d English poem. not daring to eat it although he is hungry. 9. Th e multiple interpretation s o f th e feas t hall i n Ol d Englis h literatur e demonstrate poeti c awarenes s of sourc e materia l an d a sens e o f th e appropriate use for the central paradigm of Anglo-Saxon society.The Feast Hall i n Anglo-Saxon Society 1 3 ('unius mulieris ieiunium innumeros stravit exercitus ebriorum').37 In heroic poetry the Anglo-Saxon feast hall. usually the raven . a wolf guards the king's severed head. Ambrose. A well-known topos of heroic Old English poetry is the description o f the 'beasts of battle'. col. 16. 21. Patrologia Latino. rich in treasure. Liber de Elia et leiunio. Liber de viduis. p. Patrologia Latino. Although the Anglo-Saxons enjoyed their feast halls. 260: 'Nam si Judit bibisset.36 I n th e accoun t o f King Edmund's martyrdom . In the Battle of Brunanburh. 36 Trans.35 In the biblical version of her story . 14. Crossley-Holland. e the shining halls found in Beowulf appear in contrast to the licentious banquet of doomed Assyrians in Judith. wh o lurk near the battle so that the y may feed on th e dea d bodies of the fallen warriors. leaving behind th e 'horny-beake d raven'. Even animals may feast differently in secular and Christia n poems. 'and for the fear of God he did not dare to taste the head but guarde d it against wild beasts'. trans. 37 Excerpt from Th e Passio n of St Edmund'. become s th e centr e o f communal celebration s tha t hol d societ y together a s well a s of th e devastatio n tha t ma y tear apar t kingdoms . the eagl e an d th e wolf . 35 .

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. Pennsylvania. Th e Nature Doctor (New Canaan. California. 1987). e the widow in the Nun's Priest's Tale contents herself with a more humble Bridget Anne Henisch. 1991). the friar i n the Summoner's Tale prefers capon liver. ed.The Tacuinum o f Rouen warns that cabbage i s 'bad for th e intestines' . a s well as the dietar y restrictions prescribed by the Catholi c Churc h fo r solem n observances.certai n beliefs are concurren t wit h moder n nutritiona l remedies . 2. p.4 While the Canterbury pilgrims are never depicted togethe r a t table. especially in cases of chills'. Holy Feast and Holy Fast: The Religious Significance of Food to Medieval Women (Berkeley . 1987) .Fas£ and Feast details th e splendou r and formalitie s that accompanie d celebra tory medieval dinners. Vogel notes that dill seeds 'have a warming affect an d ar e good for the stomach and intestines. 3 Given this significant valuing of food. Massachusetts. p.A. p. Fast an d Feast: Food i n Medieval Society (Universit y Park . Th e Tacuinum o f Vienna find s dil l 'brings relief to a stomach that is cold' (p. 4 That Innkeeper Bailly stands to profit financially from havin g an awards dinner at the Tabard is also significant motivation. 2 While some of the effects attributed to foodstuffs are far from accurate . Bridget Ann Henisch's. All quotations of the Canterbury Tales are taken from Th e Riverside Chaucer.C. 1 Th e Medieval Health Handbook. there is scattered mentioning o f food consumption throughou t Chaucer's work.2 Pilgrims to Table: Food Consumption in Chaucer's Canterbury Tales Elizabeth M. 1978). 49). 1 . Larry D. Biebel Food consumption plays a role in medieval society that extends far beyond the concepts of sustenance and survival. The Mon k has a taste for roasted swan . and Dr H. The Medieval Health Handbook: Tacuinum Sanitatis (Ne w York. 3 Caroline Walker Bynum.2 In the late thirteenth and the fourteenth centuries the importance of food was heightened due t o its increasing scarcity as a result of recurring famine. 1976). 54. it is only fitting in Chaucer' s Canterbury Tales that Harry Bailly suggest th e reward for telling the best story should be 'a soper at oure aller cost' (A 799). 3rd edn. reveals an interest during the middle ages in the natural benefits and detriments that certain foods bring about in the body. 408 . Benson et al. compiled b y Luisa Cogliati Arano. Luisa Cogliati Arano. (Boston. Whil the Franklin is a veritable gourmet.

The physicality of gluttony in its opposition t o the ascetic natur e of the Eucharist provides an illustration of the dichotomy of feast versus fast. while women correspond to plants because their development is more placid'. Keeping in mind that Chaucer's cast of characters is making a religious pilgrimage. While th e symbolic nature of the Eucharist highlights the positive elements of food. although it does stereotype her in the rol e of passive victim. there are three pilgrims who are In his Philosophy o f Right Hegel wrote. Th e awareness of the moti f in which Christ is given feminized attributes in the middle ages allows the incidents of food consumption found in the Canterbury Tales to be interprete d i n a religious light that is reverential towards woman. That Chaucer links woman throug h metaphor t o butchered animal s does result. Adams. In the General Prologue. These disparat e functions tha t food ca n assume may incorporate many other polarized facets. The Sexual Politics of Meat: A Feminist-Vegetarian Critical Theory (Ne w York .16 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe meal o f 'milk and brou n breed ' (B 2 2844). 5 Men have been and stil l are associated with animals: they are the hunters. For woman the analogy can be both debasing and victimizing. they analyse how diet may be used as an interpretive guidelin e for th e health . Woman doe not benefit from her association with dead animals s as man does from hi s link with living ones. Me n correspond to animals. however. 37 . Before the nature of food consumption in the Canterbury Tales can be examined as a whole. they are known for thei r physical strength. 'The difference between men an d women is like that between animals and plants . While the nurturing . The exclusion of meat in a fasting diet results in a juxtapositio o f n animal versus vegetable. Conversely. woman' s physical attractiveness to heterosexual man is at times described in meatlike terms. the si n o f gluttony is the resul t of th e abus e o f food. Chaus cer achieve s thi s connection throug h th e proces s o f association. society ha created gender s associations for both o f these food types. 1993). quoted in Carol J. personality or morality of a particular consumer. 5 . in a sacred con notation o f her gender with the sacrificial nature of Jesu Christ. Out of this opposition. gentl e an d othe r so-calle d feminine qualitie s are see n a s being reflecte d in plan t life . Various critics have note d the relevance o f Chaucer's food references in relation t o an individual character. p. The high-protein content of meat has contributed to the traditiona l view that meat is the appropriat e food source for men . the concep t of physical food readily lends itself to that of spiritual nourishment. Suc h a movemen t can tak e tw o directions. women have been aligne d both wit h vegetatio n and wit h butchered animals . the significance of diet should be evaluated at the individual level.

it does not mention what Roger of Ware prefers on his own table. however. 12 That th e Mon k has fallen int o th e disconsolat e throes of sloth is the premis e of David E Berndt. Also. His specific preference fo r swan . Th e Monastic Order in England (Cambridge . p. has an expensive palate. The reade r i s only informed of what types of dainties are fed to her dogs . pp. 1978). the Cook' s portrait consists of the dishe s he knows how to prepare. Birds with Human Souls (Knoxville. Rowlan d discusses the appropriatenes s o f th e likenin g of friar s i n th e Summoner's Tale t o 'Jovinya n / Fa t as a whale.Pilgrims t o Table: Food Consumption i n Chaucer's Canterbury Tales 1 7 expressly linked with food consumption: th e Monk. 7 Heiner Gillmeister. Tennessee. though. 54 (1939) . 462. Neuphilologische Mitteilungen. but it has been linked to that of sloth as well. . the Mon k fall s into both avarice and gluttony in his moral descent . indeed. for example. Among the medieva l prices for fowl that Ramona Bressie indexes. 6 . that clever logicians argued that Benedict's decre e could no t includ e two-legge d fowl. 8 Technically.9 The Monk. 'A fat swan loved he best of any roost' (A 206). *1 Through the connotations that arise from an analysis of the Monk's diet. 'Chaucer's Monch un d di e "Reul e of Seint Maure or of Seint Beneit"'. nequis manducet cygnem [Leviticus. the Mon k is not breaking a dietary law by indulging in this favourite dish. 8 David Knowles. Madame Eglantyne neve r consumes a specific foo d item . whereas a swan is priced at six or seven shillings. As Heiner Gillmeiste r notes . 'A Governour Wily and Wys' . a chicken is valued at two and a halfpence. . 6 What seem to be trivial details have generated a significant amount of critical commentary that enables the reader to understand mor e fully th e tru e natur e o f the characte r Chauce r ha s decide d t o present . ut in lege prohibetur. 11 In Birds. 1940). p. 'Monastic Acedia and Chaucer' s Characterization of Daun Piers'. While much has been said about the Prioress and her courtly table manners. 224-25 .7 History reveals. pp. Chaucer' s Monk . 68 (1971). the reader witnesses this character mov e from the first of the Seven Deadly Sins to the last. 21:18]. 69 (1968) .'10 Not only has the swan been associated with the sin of pride. Studies in Philology. 435-50. 'because various proverbial expressions imply that the bird is always thirsty and exemplifies the sin of Sloth' (171) . 12 With hi s appetit e fo r costl y swan. 171. Further flaws in the Monk' s morality are revealed i n the writing of Rabanus Maurus: 'Cygnus est superbia. p. Take. 488 . id est ne exhibeat se elatum . 10 Quoted i n Beryl Rowland. Modern Language Notes. 9 Ramona Bressie. and walkyng e a s a swan ' ( D 1929-30). he is not content with humble fare. the Summone r an d the Franklin. th e sixth-century Rule of Saint Benedict does not allow members of monastic communitie s t o consume the meat of quadrupeds. doe s revea l certain trait s tha t one would not expect to find in a truly ascetic man. His pride in worldly good leads him into the spiritual s desperation o f sloth. Among the many worldly pleasures this 'lord ful fat' ( A 200) enjoys. then.

Kaske offers a moral interpretation o f the Summoner by comparing his favourite foods to the people of Israel's longing for the foods of Egypt in Numbers. and eek lekes' (A 634). and Chauncey Wood. who believed that indulging in th e bulbs and culinar y herbs listed above led to ill effect s in th e bloodstream. p.18 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe Another character whose moral condition is revealed by dietary preference is the Summoner: 'Wei loved he garleek. 11:5.E. Th e Medieval Health Handbook. pp. Walter Clyde Curry diagnoses the Summone r as one who suffers fro m alopecia.13 Medieval medicine attributed the cause of this form of leprosy to impurities in th e blood . The Source s of Chaucer's Summoner's "Garleek. oynons. 15 Dennis Biggins. 45-46. 18 Arano. Reginald Pecock's Reule ofCrysten Religioun. 1927) . 48 . 11 (1964) .18 If a reader could possibl y be in doubt about th e nature of the Summoner' s characte r afte r reviewin g Chaucer's presentatio n o f him. notes that Tecock dates his work 1443' (p . Chaucer and the Medieval Sciences (New York. Curry quotesJoannitius and Paulus Aegenita. in hi s Introduction t o th e Reule ofCrysten Religioun (EETS 171. In addition t o the state of his soul. Additional and slightly mor timely support for this theory can be found e in the late fourteenth-century Tacuinum ofViennawhich list s 'influences coitus' among the uses of leeks and 'facilitates coitus' among the benefits of onions. 241). 17 Biggins. the health o f the Summoner's body is also perceived through food analysis. and Eek Lekes'. 15 however. Chaucer Review.. 481-84. pp . among others. and Ee k Lekes'. 1960). 38-43. 14 Denni s Biggins adds a moral dimensio n t o th e Summoner's food consumption by noting the reported 'aphrodisiaca l qualities of garlic. 19 Two other noteworthy articles on the Summoner and his diet are R. pp. 'Chaucer' s Summoner: Wei Loved He Garleek. 16 William Cabell Greet. Such desire is symbolic of a person's longing for the lif e o f carnality in his/her past. Oynons. Modern Language Notes. onions and leeks'. postdates Chaucer. 240-41) and finds a character analogous t o the Summone r in the thir d book of John Gower's Vox clamantis (p. pp . 'Chaucer's Summoner'. and Ee k Lekes"'. ix). dietary analysis should confirm suspicions of his lecherous personality. Ibid. Oynons. 5 (1971) . 124. Kaske. Bartholomaeus de Glanvilla and Bernardus de Gordon. 17 and s o it would seem . p. pp. the scholar notes that the source he is using. 14 13 . 76 . Connectin g the Summoner' s diet with his disease. 'The Summoner's Garleek . Oynons. Referring to the works of. Notes and Queries.19 A seemingly endless critical debate revolve s around th e tru e natur e Walter Clyde Curry. 74 (1959). 240-44 . Wood note s Garabaty's belie f that the Summoner is suffering from secondary syphilis (pp. 16 Biggins hypothesizes that 'the opinion expressed was doubtless current in th e fourteenth century'. 48.

321. 24 Jill Mann. 20 . Chaucer and Medieval Estates Satire (Cambridge. Joseph Bryant comments upon Hippocrates' Regimen in Health. th e man' s adherenc e to a seasonal diet speaks of him in a positive light. And many a breem and many a luce in stuwe. Of alle deyntees that men coul d thynke.. Modern Language Notes. a work that was influenced by the Secreta secretorum. The Secreta secretorum offers a physiognomy-oriented interpretation of a sanguine personality: 'The sangyne by kynde sholde lowe loye and laughynge . D. 153-56 . New York. h 63 (1948). p. and tha t so plentevous It snewed in his hous of mete and drynke.21 The Franklin's adherence t o the wisdom of such a scheme is witnessed by 'the fact that a perso n o f hi s years i s able t o mak e th e two-da y pilgrimage t o Canterbury and back'. New Jersey. 23 Ibid. 276). (A 343-50) If food consumption may be relied upon a s a guide for interpreting th e Franklin's character . habit. 1962).Pilgrims t o Table: Food Consumption in Chaucer's Canterbury Tales 1 9 of the Franklin. pp . it also makes a decided statement about his spiritual In A Commentary on the General Prologue to the Canterbury Tales (2nd edn. 174). he shal be fre and lyberall ' (quoted. Ful many fat partrich hadde he in muwe. The Die t of Chaucer's Franklin'.W. Of fissh and flessh . 319 . 1967). land and physique' are to be considered in this plan.22 Bryant emphasizes the Franklin's ability to practise temperance i n a diet.20 Labelled as 'epicurus owene sone' ( A 336). 23 This depiction of the Frankli n as a temperate individual argues against Jil Mann's rendering of him as a glutton. 1973) . despit e his being constantl y surrounde d by an abundance o f fine foods. th e Franklin' s balanced an d seasona l die t no t onl y indicates good physical health. Robertson in his A Preface to Chaucer: Studies in Medieval Perspectives (Princeton. 21 Quoted in Josep Bryant. . p. the Franklin is the pilgri m by far the mos t associated with food consumption : Without bake mete was nevere his house. p. finding a negative reference to Epicureans in Gower's fourteenth-century Mirourde Vomme. Muriel Bowden builds a positive view of the Frankli n based on hi s 'sangwyn' (A 333) complexion. 22 Ibid. After th e sondry sesons of the yeer. Factors suc h a s 'age. believes the Franklin i s 'blind to anything beneath surfac e appearance' because he is merely a possessor o f the 'Superficia l nobilit y of a wealthy man o f the middl e class' (p . So chaunged he his mete and his soper. On the other hand. season.24 l Indeed. which advocates maintaining a diet that focuses on balancing the humours in one's body as a regimen fo r good health ..

it may be seen that the Franklin adheres to the dietary laws of his faith mor e closely than does his fellow pilgrim the Monk. 269 . Eucharistic imager y does not . and it is the focu s of Robert E. 1888) provide a detailed recip e of fine bread bein g steeped in wine and almond milk that has been generously laced with saffron. it is also reduced In 'Carnival Food Imagery in Chaucer's Description o f the Franklin'.28 Because Chaucer's character s ar e makin g a hol y pilgrimage. there is an element of true communion and holy feast to be found within the Franklin's portrait. cinnamon.27 The 'sop in wyn' ( A 334) with which the Franklin break s hi s fast ma y also be see n a s a Eucharistic image. not th e means of their salvation. especially during Lent ' (p . Studies in the Age o f Chaucer. 25 . Thi s poin t ha s als o been mad e b y John Leyerle . 107-21.26 Since the Old Testament's manna is seen as the forerunner of the Eucharist in the New Testament. 8 2 (1967). Miller. 7 9 (1978) . 29 (1976). Chaucer's vivid image of it snowing food and drink in the Franklin's home provides additional commentary for both camps of the Franklin's critics. While Robert Miller believes the precipitatio n o f food is a material substitutio n fo r spiritual manna. pp. pp. '"It Snewed in his House"'. Hug h Keena n finds no adultera tion of the mann a image Chaucer provides: 'The snowing of food as in the manna storyjoins his feast and the Mass'. always appea r i n th e positiv e context that it does in the Franklin's portrait. 11). pp . p . ginger . 28 While The Riverside Chaucer defines the 'sop in wyn' as 'A light breakfast consisting of bits of bread i n wine' (813) . sugar. 29 While physical food assumes its most noble representatio n withi n a Christian context in the form of the Eucharistic feast. p . 498-504. Th e Canterbury Tales (Oxford . The General Prologue to the Canterbury Tales. shared hi s bounty with others. th e Tw o Fifteenth-Century Cookery-Books (EET S 91.25 Through hi s distinguishing the time to feast from th e time to fast. 27 Since 'Sein t Julian h e wa s in hi s contree' ( A 340). 29 Helen Cooper . 'Thematic Interlac e i n th e Canterbury Tales'. PMLA. 'The Pardoner' s Ale and Cake' . A corrupted representa tion of the Eucharist may be found in the Pardoner's Tale. 1989) . like the patron sain t of hospitality. 101). 1 6 (1994) . it i s fittin g tha t Eucharistic imager y shoul d b e foun d withi n th e Canterbury Tales. English Language Notes. 36. Nichols. lines 345-46: The Franklin's Feast an d Eucharisti c Shadows' . however. Neuphilologische Mitteilungen. Keenan.20 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe condition. Frederic k Jonassen asserts : 'Th e Franklin's change i n die t which accompanies the change in seasons corresponds to the customary alteration between the meat diet typical for the season of Christmas and Shrovetide and the fish diet prescribe d by the church for fasting days. clove s and mac e (p . 14-16. Essays an d Studies. 23 (1985). it ma y be assume d tha t th e Franklin. 26 Robert P. Hugh T. Helen Cooper notes tha t th e bread an d wine that th e thir d riote r brings back t o his associates become transformed 'into the vehicle of bodily death' for the rioters.

74-75).'31 Regard less of what the specific sin was that motivated Adam and Eve to eat the frui t of the Tree o f Life. R. 1952) . Studies in Philology. p . . 32 This allegory originates from Augustine's De trinitate XII. 1959) . In A Preface to Chaucer. 31 In his 'Aspects of Gluttony in Chaucer an d Gower' . 104. In hi s discussion o f the Seve n Deadly Sins. An illustration from a fourteenth-century manuscript of the Roman de la Rose. 817). In all due fairness. and n o matter how much she has she never has any hope that she can satisfy her appetite whe n she is hungry . 43. The Art of Courtly Love. 34 Morton W . p. ' (i . 203-4. Yeager notes that the Pardoner' s reorderin g o f the cardina l sins agrees with the fifth-centur y writing s of John Cassian .Pilgrims t o Table: Food Consumption i n Chaucer's Canterbury Tales 2 1 to its bases connotation through the sin of gluttony. John Jay Parry (New York. personifies the si n as a man gulpin g th e content s of the goble t i n his right hand (fig . in th e sixt h century. This union of food and wine in sin further develops gluttony as a dark parallel of the Eucharist . A n example of such exegesis maybe found in the Parson's Tale (i. Th e Seven Deadly Sins (Eas t Lansing. in which it is explained that Eve represents the flesh or the senses and Adam portray s the intellect . Bloomfield. Gluttony has not been exclusively depicted a s a woman in medieval art. although no t exactly. t gluttony replaces pride as the caus e of Original Sin in Eden: 'O caus e first of oure confusioun! / O original of oure dampnacioun' (C 468-69) .33 Such attitude s wer e no t confine d t o literature . listed pride as the first of the sins . 33 Andreas Capellanus. Chaucer's Parso n adhere s mor e closely .32 This rationale e of sin has generated the misogynistic tradition of viewing woman as a creature of extraordinary appetite. It was Gregory the Grea t who. trans. It is through th e weaknes s of the sense s that man's reason may b persuaded t o succumb to temptation. 34 The medieva l conceptio n o f gluttony not onl y involved overindulgence i n foo d but als o the abus e o f alcohol. A mid fourteenth century sculpture of the Seven Deadly Sins in the Doge's Palace in Venice depicts Glutton y a s a woman wh o 'hold s a jewelled cu p i n he r righ t hand and gnaws a limb of a bird held i n her left'. 322 49). to Gregory's ordering o f the sin s and indexes pride as the foremost of them.. Michigan . . Robertson offers a thorough explanation o f both Augustine's philosophy and Peter Lombard' s incorporation o f the Augustinian account of the Fall in his Sententiae (pp. 30 . Andreas Capellanus wrote: Woman is also such a slave to he r bell y that there is nothing she would b e ashamed to assent to if she were assured of a fine meal.30 For Chaucer's Pardoner. A Preface t o Chaucer. Chaucer' s Parso n supplie s suc h a definition: 'Glottony e is unmeasurable appeti t to ete or to drynke . pp. she usually likes to eat more than normal. 81 (1984). 68). reprinted in Robertson . th e Genesi s myths provided the Father s of the Churc h with ample fodde r t o construct a n allegorica l interpretatio n o f the Fal l of Man. . Using Eve's gluttony towards the forbidden frui t as a basis for his argument.F.

.22 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe It is interesting t o note that. At this point. in the two discussions of gluttony in th e Canterbury Tales. balanced o r eve n vegetaria n intak e surroundin g the genuinel y good individuals i n bot h th e General Prologue and th e separat e tale s tha t is countered b y a meat-oriented diet evinced by a less upstanding cast of characters. If the food consumption that occurs in the Canterbury Tales is examined as a whole. 126). however. bu t ther e i s a goos e o n han d t o be roasted for his guests. and the ale and bread contribute instea d to a gluttonous feat that climaxes in an evening of vengeful lechery and violence. the ever-patient Griselda maintains a vegetarian existence. there is no emphasis placed upon woman as a creature of inordinate appetite . 35 Another noteworth y point i n thi s tale is found i n th e Summoner' s detailing o f a friar's begging. / Th e whiche she shredde an d seeth for hir lyvynge' (E 226 27). Occasionally . Symbolic of Simkin's lack of ethics and his misguided worldliness. she enjoys a treat of bacon and eggs . The good widow of the Nun's Priest's Tale also lives simply. and 'Bacon o r bee f ( D 1753) . There is a pattern o f pure. the Eucharisti c symbol of ale and brea d i s absent from this man's house. th e Pardoner's Tale uses male historical figures to illustrate the folly of gluttony. the mea t of gelded animal s was considered t o be extremely tender (p . . 1841) . a method doe s begin t o emerge. Th e friar in the Summoner's Tale insists that no special attention should be given to the food that will be prepared fo r him. drinking no wine and eatin g mil k and brow n bread. Roasted meat contributed to a phlegmatic disposition (p . His requests. sustaining herself with 'Wortes or other herbes . 122) and pork was considered to be 'very nourishing and quickl y transformed' (p. for 'na t o f a capon bu t th e lyvere . and the Parson's Tale only refers to the culpability of Eve in its discussion of the allegorical interpretation mentioned above. I n th e Reeve's Tale. In sharp contrast to these corrupt diets. The absenc e of such traditional notions causes one to speculate that Chaucer sa w beyond th e standard conception s o f his day. As with the rioters in the Pardoner's Tale. . while liver was believed to be hard to digest. And after tha t a rosted pigges heed ' ( D 1838. Indeed . 106). What begins as simple requests for grain and cheese escalates int o repeated petitions fo r 'brawn' ( D 1750). Thos e character s who indulge i n mea t ar e The Medieval Health Handbook inform s us that. Simki n ha s t o sen d hi s daughter ou t fo r al e and bread . the image of the key to salvation is not perceived. th e subtl e emergence o f a pattern tha t allies diet with gender should b e noted . 35 . exhibi t a pampered natur e tha t desire s rich food. .

435-36. there ar e trace s o f a humanistic sensitivit y in thi s dietary patterning . certayn. Carol J. Thus. Notes and Queries. For. failur e o f men t o eat meat announces that they are no t masculine' (p . 6 (1959). This is not t o sa y that i n medieva l times the word vegetable or any of its derivation had the same extremely passive connotations as it does today. The primary example of the association o f women with meat is found in the Merchant's Tale. 'Chaucer' s General Prologue. Th e sens e of positive growth surrounde d thi s word to the exten t that it was use in religious writing. in addition to the alignment of disreputable natures with the consumption o f flesh. And bet than old boef is the tendre veel. Oold fissh and yong flessh wolde I have fayn. that of vegetables with woman and passivity. 37 Adams.Pilgrims t o Table: Food Consumption i n Chaucer's Canterbury Tales 2 3 predominantly male. (E 1416-20) While the diets of Sir Thopas and the Summoner might initially seem to counter the abov e assessment. pp. even abstemious. however. is correct in its assumption that the Summoner is carrying on a homosexual affair wit h th e Pardoner . quod he. In his negative representation of the more carnivorous food regimen . 'a pyk than a pickerel'. Th e Sexual Politics o f Meat. temperament . A163'. thereby suggesting a n association betwee n th e stereotypicall y feminine quality o f passivit y an d th e killing of animals for food. In the OED the earliest listing under vegetative reads: d '1398 .36 Carol Adams has outlined the historical associa tion o f animals with ma n an d aggressivenes s and. When Januar explains to his friends why he wishes y to marry a young woman instead o f one close r to his own age.Trevis a BarthDeP. She shal nat passe twenty yeer. be [soule ] vegetatyf desyret h t o be' (p . 37 Thus it may be seen tha t Chaucer has not onl y refrained fro m personifying gluttony as a woman. 36 . 75). conversely . Th human e soul was conceived of as being female in nature during the middl e ages. Adams. Also. 34-37 .R. 34). if the hypothesis found i n Dennis Biggins. pp . he cre ates a debasing analogy: I wol noon oold wyf han in no manere. those whose diets are either vegetarian or almostvegetarian ar e female. note s the followin g social connotatio n concernin g die t an d sexuality : 'Me n wh o decide t o esche w mea t eating are deemed effeminate. Chaucer i s not makin g any direct pro-vegetaria n statement . th e poin t o f having th e her o o f Chaucer's mock-romanc e munch on gingerbread and liquorice is to highlight his effeminacy. th e Summoner' s tast e fo r vegetable s als o serve s a s a com mentary on hi s masculinity . i n Th e Sexual Politics o f Meat. there ar e element s woven into certai n segment s o f th e Canterbury Tales that link women to meat. 'Bet is'. but has associated his food-consuming female characters with a patient.

for they caste noght awey (C 538-42) The concept of breaking the animals' bones is particularly striking here because it falls sixty-four lines after a reference to the mutilation of Christ's own body: 'Oure blissed Lordes body they totere . th e passage could be dismissed as a rejoinder to the Wife of Bath's insulting remark tha t refers to her three. pp. and all my bones are scat: tered . 806). Just as eating for life entails the death of an organism. th e symbolis m of physical food consumption move s beyond bot h the genderizatio n of food and it s moral commentary until it comes to the spiritua l significance of Christ as passive victim. And turnen substaunc e into accident To fulfille a l thy likerous talent! Out of the hard bone s knokke they The mary . discusses the double entendre of this phrase. 71 (1956).18 'I am poured ou t like water. From thi s close associa tion. Traces o f the notio n o f th e passiv e victimization of animals can b e found in the Pardoner's diatrib e against gluttony when he describes the violence of cooks in the kitchen: Thise cookes. yet Th e Riverside Chaucernotes 'the OEDdoes not recor d the latter [sexual ] meaning until 1497' (p . / Tha t is annexed unto glotonye' (C 481 82). 225-46. Another pointe d exampl e o f linking women with slain animals is mentioned i n the Monk' s portrait. . . The Pardoner as well addresses 'the fyr of lecherye. so too did Christian salvation require a death fo r spiritual life . The combination of the cooks' action s with a reminder o f Christ's Passion recall s the words of Psalm 21. 15. 'Chaucer's Puns'.38 This associatio n of women with mea t tie s in neatl y with the Parson's transitio n fro m hi s discussion o f gluttony t o tha t o f lechery: 'After Glotonye thanne comth Lecherie. how they stampe. They hav e numbered all my bones'./ He m thought that e Jewes rente hym noght ynough -' ( C 474-75).24 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe Were thi s the onl y example o f equating woman with edibl e flesh . for thise two synnes been so ny cosyns that ofte tyme they wol nat departe' (1836) . and grynde. the sacrificial lamb. old husbands: 'And yet in bacon hadde I never e delit ' ( D 418). PMLA. Baum. As January liken s women to 38 Paull F. Thi s lusty man 'lovede venerie' ( A 166). and streyne . . Women and animals are used t o slake these two strong appetites of men. The implications are that this passion is twofold: the Mon k not onl y loves to hunt animals but als o desires to prey upon women.

collect s her chicken s under he r wings ? Truly. then. master. the new testament in my blood. Lord God . the Word made Flesh. 41 Quoted. offered 39 Luke 22:20 reads. Yo u are a mother. California. so too is Christ associated with flesh in Isaiah 53. . 'This is the chalice. 40 Bynum. i n Revelations o f Divine Love. which shall be shed for you'. good lord.41 e Because thi s theme wa s prevalent amon g severa l differen t writers . . lik e a hen. the moti f o f describing Chris t in materna l term s did not remai n isolated withi n thi s specifi c religiou s community . p. abov all.42 In ligh t of the popularit y of this theme. The significance of a feminized Christ. and thou wouldst not. 39 What remains t o be seen i s how woman fits into this religious connota tion. 190 . 112. Jerusalem. are You no also a mother? Are You not that mothe r t who. It is then You. 1982) .Pilgrims t o Table: Food Consumption i n Chaucer's Canterbury Tales 2 5 meat. who are mother. Peter of Lombard an d Julian of Norwich. M. Even if Chaucer had no t encountere d th e Cistercian writings. It is believed tha t the Cistercians were inspired b y the work of the Benedictin e mon k Anselm of Canterbury. it is highly plausible tha t th e well-rea d Chauce r wa s familiar with some of these works. trans. Jesus a s Mother: Studies i n th e Spirituality o f the High Middle Ages (Berkeley . Fo r what others hav e conceived an d give n birth t o they have received from You . Chauce r ma y have indeed decide d t o incorporate i t into the Canterbury Tales. From thi s nurturing image . That ther e i s a strong connectio n betwee n butchere d animal s an d Christ i s also eviden t throug h th e Lord' s word s a t th e Las t Supper. 1977). 42 Julian o f Norwich wrote: This is Jesus ou r tru e mothe r i n nature fro m ou r first making'. Jesus. Since Christ. Caroline Walker Bynum has explored a twelfth-century movement among the Cistercians to write about Jesu Christ using maternal terminol s ogy and imagery . Ne w York . de Mast a (Garde n City .40 Anselm base d his Prayer 1 0 to St Paul o n th e words of Christ in Matthew 23:27: Jerusalem. and he shall not open his mouth'. tho u tha t killest the prophets an d stonest the m tha t are sent unto thee . p. how often would I have gathered togethe r th y children. Christ appear s i n a maternal light in the writings of Dante.L .7: 'He shall be led as a sheep to the slaughter and shall be dumb as a lamb before his shearer. Anselm progresses : But You. ibid.. as the hen doth gather he r chickens under her wings.. p. provides a key to how an audience ma y interpret th e variou s symboli c levels of food consumption i n the Canterbury Tales. 114 .

the foo d consumption within the Canterbury Tales stands as a reminder that Chaucer's colourful and entertaining personalitie s are actually on a spiritual pilgrimage. While the stereotype of woman as passive victim is. when H e allowe d Himsel f t o b e butchered. in Chaucer. ar e absent. consequently live a carnal life . Thei r tast e for flesh. they are the opinions of his misguided characters. Those characters who ar e depicte d a s heavy meat eaters. From thi s linkage Chaucer moves from the concep t of mortal female to spiritual mother. but her son. the identity of this spiritual mother is not the Virgin Mary.have either renounced meat completely or consume it only in its due season offcast. the Franklin and th e widow of the Nun's Priest's Tale. While the character s th e pilgrim s describe i n their storie s are not in the literal process of making a pilgrimage. most often washed down with wine or ale.26 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe his own body as ransom in order to provide spiritual salvation. th e Summoner' s fria r an d th e Monk. . who became the ultimat e foodstuf f o f salvation . The pas sages that align women with meat do not emanate from Chaucer's voice. Chaucer deepen s the spiritua l significanc e of his food pattern s no t only through highlighting the contrast between the concepts of fasting. Thus.Griselda . they are journeying throug h thi s world an d movin g on toward s th e next . but also by establishing the associatio n o f women with meat. unfortunately. goodness and vegetation an d those of indulging. the antifeminist traditions of depicting woman as glutton. Thos e wh o seem mos t prepared for the spiritual afterlif e . si n and meat. underscored throug h hi s methods. leads them toward the si n of gluttony. Chaucer doe s his best t o redeem th e connotatio n o f women as meat by subtle association with the Redeemer of Christians. and of emphasizing that the originating cause of the Fal l of Man was Eve's uncontrollable appetite . As a result of the motif of the later middle ages in which Christ is depicted in feminine terms.

how was it distributed. But. societal stratification. They are always dependent on the import of bulk food supplies from their immediate hinterlands or beyond. When I was thinking about topics for this essay it occurred to me that another gauge of urbanity might be found in the diversity of foods available for medieval English towns flourished primarily not to serve well-to-do residents and travellers. In the ancient and medieva l world. Ancient Roman citie s sa w exactly this kind o f development . ready-to-eat food. The groun d floor of an insula typically was occupied b y shops and the upper floors by successively cheaper flats. but rather t o serve the urba n poor. public services. that the vending of fast food . second. and environmenta l pollution. fast food probably was scarce in medieval England excep t i n large town s where the populatio n densit y was high. that as a result. Rome itself was a city of apartment blocks or insulae reaching up t o six storeys in height. street plans. Pompeii and Hercu laneum. prepared. and consumed? And what can that tell us about urban populations . In smalle r Roman cities. such apartment houses had fewe r storey s but were otherwise similar.tha t is. whose tenants had to . such as Ostia. hot. After examining such classic urban signifiers as fortifications. I ended on a less serious note by suggesting that one unmistakable hallmark of urbanity in any era is traffic jams. once the food was successfully imported into towns. first. which betoken a densely settled population. economies and standards of living? It is my contention. not food cooked to order .3 Fast Food and Urban Living Standards in Medieval England Martha Carlin I recently completed a book on the urban development of the medieval London suburb of Southwark in which the concluding chapter concerned urbanization and how one could identify and define it. abundant commercial activity and a teeming volume of transport. And. An essential difference betwee n towns and village s is that towns cannot feed themselves. as in the modern world . two major constraints on the provisionin g of large towns were transport costs and foo d perishability. including ready-made or 'fast ' foods. occupational diversity. and especiall y where the numbe r of single-adult households was high.

Winchester Studies. 148-49 . 2 Stambaugh. pp. 3 The fourt h law code of ^Ethelred II lists royal tolls at London on fish. 1988). The groun d floor was occupied by shops and the upper storeys by successively poorer flats. and nin e in 1148. A. The hom e meal s of the working poor consiste d largely of bread and vegetables. an d trans . 1925). A Handbook o f Anglo-Saxon Food Processing an d Consumption (Pinner . 72-73. 4 At Winchester. 18-23. cheese. sausage and boiled eggs. groceries. 207 . For example. the bread bought or distributed at public doles already baked. 1976). poorer Romans seem to have eaten their hot meals in public eating houses and wine bars or from stand-up snack bars an d stree t stalls. the urban poor of ancient Rome seem to have been a s dependen t o n convenienc e food s a s man y moder n city dwellers. 1 . none of which had an identifiable kitchen. J . Lorimer (Ne w Haven. pp.28 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe carry their water. 1992). commercial cooks are recorde d i n England . 359 . . J. Robertso n (Cambridge. one insula of this type in Rome. Suc h uppe r flats normally lacked not only running water but also ovens and hearths. ed . 23-28. Connecticut. 11 . surveys record thre e cook s c. 5 In Paris John E . 49-50. o n th e Vi a Giulio Romano. Sourcebook II : Th e Empire. Naphtal i Lewi s and Meye r Reinhold (New York. p. except for ale.3 By the late eleventh and early twelfth centuries. survives to a height of fou r storeys. ready-made food probably was a rarity. 5 Frank Barlow et al. 4 Ann Hagen . 1110. wine. E. Portable braziers probably were the usual means of heating an d cookin g in thes e flats. Th e Ancient Roman City (Baltimore . Stambaugh comments that the resident s of this insula 'mus t have used charcoal braziers for cooking or have gone out for hot meals'. p . pp. In the de-urbanized worl d of the early middle ages . and London. On Roman insulae see also Jerome Carcopino. 200 . cheese and butter. Daily Life in Ancient Rome.O. waste and rubbish u p and down the flight s of stairs. however. reprinted 1966) . Middlesex. 429 . 2 In fact. Those who could afford it would supplement thes e with such cold ready-to-eat items as olives. fruit. ed. 1940). pickled fish. bul k supplies of food o r elaborate cookin g equipment. trans. eggs. which reached its medieval peak in the first half of the twelft h century. 184 . Martin Biddle (Oxford . and also because many of the urban poo r coul d no t affor d expensiv e fuel. bread. wine.1 As a result of such living arrangements. Rowell. lettuce. onions. butter and cheese. pp. some other tolls there were to be paid in pepper and vinegar.mostly beans and peas . 209. Th e Ancient Roman City.ofte n already cooked and perhaps heated up at home on a brazier. Maryland. 176-78 . Winchester in the Early Middle Ages: An Edition and Discussion of the Winton Domesday. ed. especiall y in majo r pilgrimag e centres. and London . ed. 1955 . Stambaugh. The Laws o f the Kings o f England from Edmund t o Henry I . and the vegetables . see als o pp. 37-44. cucumbers. Henry T. hens. 430. pp. Roman Civilization.

elixa . v t noui cib i emantur e t coquantur . Wisconsin. pro tempore . cotidiano mane pe r s e sunt loci s distincti omnes . chicken or eel . 837.Fast Food an d Urban Living Standards i n Medieval England 2 9 fast foo d wa s available in grea t variety by the mi d thirteent h century . frixa. ne e libea t ieiunis expectare . ii. metiers et professions exerces dans Paris depuis le treizieme siecle (Paris. ho t beans (fives chaudes). ii (Rolls Series. when Thomas Becket's biographer William Fitz Stephen discusse d it at length in his 'Description of London'. avicularum. 1195-1272) describe d suc h popula r item s there as waffles (gaufres). garlic sauce (allie). p. 8 Moder n scholar s generall y hav e assume d tha t Fit z Alfred Franklin . According to Fitz Stephen's rather glamorized account. pp. s. 8 The text printed by Stow reads: Singulorum officiorum exercitores . metiers et professions. and Liber Custumarum. 552. fol. mutton. no . Bibl. ho t cake s (chaus gastiaus).528. printed i n Franklin . fercula. ho t pastie s (chauspastez). pigeon. Daily Living in th e Twelfth Century: Based o n the Observations of Alexander Neckam i n London and Paris (Madison.v. spiced pasties . chees e of Champagne and o f Brie. v t officiis . hot flans (jlaons chaus). interi m a d ripa m curritur . II. fried o r boiled. ed. est inuenire cibaria . pisciculos . MS fonds francais. 359-60. delicatiore s diuitioribus. fresh butter (burrefres). 242 . hot tarts and simnels (chaudes tartes et siminiaus) . Dictionnaire historique des arts. Dictionnaire historique des arts. It was ope day and night. boiled and roasted beef. Urban Tigner Holmes . 782-83 . which was growing rapidly in the twelfth century . supe r ripa m fluminis . 6 Th e street-crie s o f thirteenth century Paris. 748-51. from thos e of rich knights and foreign travellers to those of the poor . like modern bagels). ve l alii impransi exeant . 80 . included references to such prepared food s as hot mashe d peas (pois chaus pilez). 1860) . Ibi quotidie. reprinted New York. ibi praesto sunt omnia desid erabilia. Simnels were twice-cooked bread (possibl y first boiled. 246 .. 1906. assa. See OED. pp. Paris. game. Quantalibet militum vel peregrinorum infinitas intrat vrbem. and offered ready-cooke d food to suit n all tastes and purses.500. which were available roasted. between th e wine-ship s and th e wine cellars. made of the finest flour. 7 There were also cakes called gastiaus rastis. singularum rerum venditores. recorded b y Guillaume de la Ville Neuve. vel ab urbe exitura . qualibet die i vel noctis hora. carne s grossiore s pauperibus . singularum operarum suaru m locatores . pork.. Nat. hot pancake s (galetes chaudes). veal. then baked.7 London. pisces . when John d e Garlan d (c . hot wafer s (chaudes oublees). thispublica coquina was locate d o n th e riverside . Praeterea est in Londonia . Si subito veniant ad alique m ciuium amici fatigati e x itinere. filled with choppe d pork . Fit z Stephen describe d in detail its provision of ho t dishes o f meat. lamb. fish and poultry . 1952). and tart s o r flans fille d wit h sof t chees e o r egg. avium. venationum. had a fastfood outle t by the earl y 1170s. n e ve l hii nimiu m ieiunent. capon and goose. inte r vina et nauibus et cellis vinariis venalia. light pastries (nieuks) and wafers (oublies). Munimenta Gildhallae Londoniensis. Henry Thomas Riley. publica coquina. rissoles (roinssoles). 6 . 1968). pp . kid. 'Den t famul i manibus lymphas panesque'.

et ciuitati plurimum expediens. appositis. p. Survey o f London (1603 edn). 1908. Kingsford. 1975). Hinc est.O. Fo r translations . 504-5. Butler. see ibid. William Fitz Stephen. 1949). W. deliciis. Stow. 258 (grant. ed. ii. 10 In 1312-13 there were at least nineteen cook s in one o f the four 'leets' (wards ) of Norwich. i . c. no. of a cellar in the parish of St Jame s (Garlickhithe). ed. vel attage n lonicum . butter and eggs. vel Afram auem . 238. Survey. s i placet. ed. i. accipiunt anserem. which ordered that all the cookshops on the Thames be whitewashed and plastered inside and out. 11 This was the lee t called 'Over-the-Water'. H. London. ed.11 and ther e was a street there called 'Cockrowe' (Cook Row) continued illuc. with an essa y by Sir Frank Stenton (London . e t s e pro mod o su o singul i reficiunt . suggests that the cookshops there catered primarily to river boatmen and dockworkers. Stow. 6. Hassall. but moder n translators have generally read it as 'cookshop'. Camden 3r d series . et ad ciuilitatem pertinens. The earlies t of the thre e late r refer ences is the Assize of Building drawn up after the great London fire of 1212. 322-23 (note citing Assize of Building and dee d of 1221).B . 800-1216: TheShapingofa City (London. ed. iuxta medicina m ess e coquoru m officiu m simulacrum . 1934 . See translations listed in note 8. 11 5 (where it is called a 'public kitchen'). 1912. p. above. The Norwic h leet roll of 1287-88 mentions a mustard-seller. diuertunt . Qu i se curare volunt molliter. Kingsford (Oxford ..30 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe Stephen's publica coquinavras a single establishment. Haec equidem publica coquina est. no. thirtee n dealer s in cheese. 1219-20). Kingsford . 52. ii. 1212-21) refe r to the 'cookshops ' (i n plural) on th e Thame s in th e Vintry. but three later references (c . reprinte d 1956) . . A deed dating from c . quae ibi inueniuntur. 60 . and seven poulterers. Leet Jurisdiction i n th e City o f Norwich. Kingsford's notes list some variants among the surviving manuscript s of Fitz Stephen. 71 (London. 79 . who underlined th e phras e super ripam (fol . H. of 1221. Norman London. an d sellers of pork sausages and puddings. Selde n Society. For 'cellars' (presumabl y winecellars) in this vicinity. pp. betwee n th e haven s of Queenhithe and Dowgate. Survey of London. John Stow. pp. trans. 9 Stow himself translated Fitz Stephen' s publica coquina as 'Cookes row'. 1219-20 describes a plot of land in th e paris h of St Martin Vintry as lying 'on the riverban k b y the cookshops ' (super ripam ad coquinas). quod legitur in 'Gorgia' Platonis . p. 5 (London. fos 6-106) was owned by Stow. Hudson . mentions the 'cookshop s of the Vintry' (coquinae Vinetrie). 8. MS Cotton Faustina B. reprinte d 1971). and Stow .E. see Stow . William Hudson.L. 24 1 (dee d of c. ed. Wheatley (London . 9 This riverside location. pp. 1990). By the late thirteenth and early fourteenth centuries a variety of specialist retailers of ready-to-eat foods can be identified in London and in the larger provincia l towns. et adulatione m quartae particulae ciuilitatis. II. p. all of whom would especially welcome a hot meal . pp. Survey. 1198. eleven dealers in oats. Cartulary ofSt Mary Clerkenwell. and another deed . which also supported a t least fourteen butchers. and to travellers who arrived by boat. reprinted New York. Survey. 10 Leet Jurisdiction i n th e City o f Norwich during th e Xlllth an d XlVth Centuries. and also Christopher Brooke and Gillian Keir. 222-23. lying between two other cellars) . The cartular y (British Library. p. non opu s u t qui d quaerant. 67). C. ed. 1891) .

21 . fos 88-90.. go!'. 15 Calendar of Letter-Books . Letter-Book A. Pastelers sold pastie s of meat and fish . pp. in London th e pric e regulation s o f 1350 forbade cook s to take more tha n a penny for putting a capon o r rabbit in a pasty. printed by G. Waitz in 'Handschriften in Englischen Bibliotheken'. which housed Edward Fs administration fro m 129 8 t o 1305. mustard sellers . 99. go dine. fifty fishmongers. Sharpe (London. EilertEkwall (Lund. 13 Leicester ha d com mercial cook s b y 1335. Ursula Priestley. 339-43. 234. 14 G. 15 An English treatise of the late thirteenth o r early fourteenth centur y lists the fas t food s to be foun d i n towns .16 Cooks would also put a customer's meat in dough and bake it. pp 151. citing Records o f Leicester. to drink with the meat. Men of Property: An Analysis of the Norwich Enrolled Deeds. ed.17 Langland's poem Piers Plowman gives fragments of the street-crie s of later fourteenth-century London. p. p. p. ha d thirty-fiv e commercia l cook s in 1304. 271. Street Life i n Medieval England (2n d edn. The Norwic h Survey (Norwich. 73-74. 13 Michael Prestwich. p. 1899-1912). Oxford. roll of 1292. while the taverners offered 'Whit e wine of Alsace and red wine of Gascony. forty-nine butchers. twenty-six taverners. p. l2 York. 1983). Ibid. a s well a s (cooked ) meats . 4 (1879). pp. at th e waferers on e woul d fin d wafer s o r griddl e cake s (?lagana) cooke d i n irons or ovens. 257. both wild and domestic. 1285-1311. thirty-seve n poulterers . 1951). ii. hot! Good piglet s and geese. See also Heather Swanson. Flan makers sold cheesecakes and flans (?opacos artocopos. Borthwick Papers. 1868). . 1945). waferers.Fast Food an d Urban Living Standards i n Medieval England 3 1 by 1314. 1970). Bennett (1928. . an d cheese . saucers. Elizabeth Rutledge and Margo t Tillyard. An inquest of 130 4 identified twenty-fou r whit e bread bakers. flan makers. Prologue. ed. 1989) . 12 . reprinted New York. Salusbury. Reginald R. 168. 336. pp. bread. seventy brewers. Henry S. and pie bakers. printed in England from Chaucer to Caxton. wel l spice d (bene piperatos). 18 B-text.T. on pain of imprisonment. Neues Archivder GesellschaftfuraltereDeutscheGeschichtskunde.268. thirty-five cooks. pp.1 am grateful t o John Munr o for the suggested date of this treatise. 17.160. ed. of the City o f London. flaones) mad e of eggs. 21-28. in which cooks and their knaves cried 'Hot pies. Tw o Early London Subsidy Rolls. 22-24 . gam e and poultry. cheesemongers. 16 BL. 134 . pp. Medieval Artisans (Oxford. 1976). 26. Henry Thomas Riley (London. York Civic Ordinances. nine forestallers o f fishmonger s an d twenty seven regrators who had been active in the city between 1301 and 1304. 31 . 1301. 14 I n Londo n b y the lat e thirteent h t o earl y fourteenth century there were specialist cooks. Add. of the Rhine and Rochelle'. lines 225-29. pp. twelve black bread bakers. 49 (York. MS 8167. 17 Memorials o f London and London Life. ed. 144.18 The mid fifteenth-century poem London Lyckpenny als o report s some o f the stree t cries o f Westminste r Serena Kelly. ed. 11 vols (A-L). 1276-1419. . roll of 1319. 166.

Low (London.and fifteenth-centur y London th e emphasi s seem s t o b e o n ho t dishes: hot vegetables . D. all hot! Here's your peas hot. and fa t ribs of beef.cwt. I n Cheapside . one othe r knife . Let us examine each of these possibilities in turn. or was. and poo r residents. t included four-and-a-hal f hundredweigh t o f ironwar e an d si x hundredweight of brassware. two grease pans . together weighing 2 cwt. The metal pots and pans and utensils in his kitchen. many of which concern ready-to-ea t food. valued at jus under £6 10s. stree t peddler s haw k ho t peascod s and fresh strawberries an d cherries . hot.32 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe and London. tw o racks. 29-32. often hel d as a sort of rustic feast. 19 It is striking tha t among th e prepare d foods recorded in th e stree t cries of thirteenth-century Paris and fourteenth. six brass pails weighing . eight brass pots. where.. like a McDonald's hamburger an d fries today. hot pies. larder. travellers. who could affor d t o pay a premium for ready-to-eat food.M.20 No kitchenware of wood or pottery is London Lyckpenny. and whose lodgings might have limited cooking facilities. a gridiron. 180) . ed. hot ribs. he said. The houses of wealthy residents normally included extensive kitchen offices. They included four men who sold hot boiled peas (made from dried green peas) to the cry of'Hot green peas! all hot. who were unable t o buy food o r fuel i n bulk. salt and vinegar. 1949) . 1861-62) . London Labour and th e LondonPoor. ale . tw o andirons. occupied a riverside mansion that included a pantry. whose goods were seized and inventorie d in 1376. a poor countryman from Kent. In th e mid nineteenth centur y Henr y Mayhe w recorded the cries and wares of the street-sellers of food in London. in London is London: A Selection of Prose and Verse. with a little pepper. and kitchen. Od. hot sheep's feet. 20 Lyons' kitchenware consisted o f eight spits. an d i n Eastcheap cooks proclaim thei r beef rib s and mea t pies. p. 'it is. two frying pans . and thre e 19 . ho t pancake s and flans and tarts . both wealthy and poor . The pea s wer e not shelled . tw o massive iron pestle s (weighin g 4r cwt). and eate n by the pod bein g dipped in melted butter. and the n drawn through the teeth to extract the peas. hot cake s and wafers . the pod being thrown away'. three trivets. however. Henry Mayhew. But by whom? The thre e main categories of potential customers would have been those described by Fitz Stephen: wealthy and well-to-d o residents. buttery. customary to have "scoldings of peas". on e iron flesh hook . hot sheep' s feet. i. ho t breads. hot roasted meat and poultry. 4 vols (London. but boile d in the pod . hot!' Mayhew added. two dressing knives. that the hot peascod s described in London Lyckpenny wer e known in many other parts of the country . is urged by cookshop proprietor s to sit down and partak e of bread. wine. The notoriou s London vintne r Richard Lyons . 158-21 2 (ho t peas. an d their household servant s included cooks and other kitchen workers. for example . pp. o r eve n none a t all. At Westminster Gate the narrator of the poem. This suggests that such foods were generally purchased fo r immediate consumption . pp. a chafin g dish and a small basin. i n Candlewick Street.

there is no mention of a brewhouse or brewing vessels. 25 By continued brass mortar s weighin g 3 ^ cwt.. in Essays i n Medieval History Presented to Bertie Wilkinson. great feasts . . including soups. In London. 4 . A. an d s o we cannot kno w if there wer e an y salting troughs . The Wealt h of Richard Lyons'. and that only for large parties was i usual to employ caterers or to buy quantit ties of prepared foods . pp. Od. 1926-61) . and these inventories are typical of the period. 318-19 . which suggests that Lyons' household also bought rather than brewed its ale. the cooks had moved away from the Vintr y docks by the 1280 s to cluste r in Friday Street. 159 . 3d. T.A.Fast Food an d Urban Living Standards in Medieval England 3 3 listed. Myers. Thomas (Cambridge. an d trans . There are even recipes for cooking frogs and snails. pp. 24 The Goodman o f Paris (Le menagierde Paris). He also copied ou t a selection of sample menus for ordinary dinners and suppers. smalle r parties and othe r occasions .R . 'Wealth of Richard Lyons' . 23 In Franc e i n th e 1390 s a n elderl y householder. pp. verjuice and almonds . 317-18.24 Unusually. roasts. 1364-81. However . as in wealthy households generally. Calendar of Plea and Memoranda Rolls of the City of London. 23 Mockying's eight-room house contained furnishings valued at £238 16s. presumabl y because th e secondhan d valu e o f suc h item s was negligible. jellies. mustard . A. a wealthy fishmonger. 1928). pp. 154-56. stews. wrote a book of household managemen t for his fifteen-year-old wife. 25 Calendar o f Letter-Books. except for the bread. because the staple foods found in the larder did not include grain or flour. Travellers might be expected to have been amon g the chief consumers o f hot. ready-to-ea t food .21 Also. Sharpe . pp. 1969). wealthy but no t well-born. Eileen Power (Ne w York. to the sout h eas t of St Paul's. vegetable dishes. salt. pasties. 6 vols (1323-1482).22 A similar set of kitchen equipment was inventoried in 1373 in the house o f Thomas Mockying. flans. meals were prepared fro m raw ingredients cooked at home. vinegar.R. 102-4. However. know n through hi s modern editor s a s 'the Menagie r o f Paris'. the location s of cookshops i n towns suggest otherwise. drin k and some of the condiments. ed. ed. he include d for her us e a large collectio n of recipes for all kinds of foods. it seems likely that Lyons' household bought rather than baked its bread. It is clear fro m the Menagier's text that in his wealthy bourgeois household. ) 22 Myers. Powicke (Toronto . sauce s an d preserves. 315. se e below. 21 The staple s in th e larde r consisted o f honey. 104. for example. (O n gingerbread. ed. fish and eg g dishes.. remaining there unti l the earl y 1300s. B. sausages. ed. crepes.H. including kitchenware worth £4 8s. Sandquist and M. kneading trough s o r wooden ove n peels. the spice s in th e wardrobe include d si x pounds o f gingerbread.

27 PRO. 107-10 . saffron an d sugar. t o a baker.30 This suggests tha t the unidentified lord's household di d its own cooking Calendar of Coroners Rolls of the City o f London. lived around the middle of the High Street. 29 Garlic. however. 30 Household Accounts from Medieval England. and table 7. 1905 . an d four . British Academy. 930 and 960 . an d b y 1410 th e centr e o f the trad e had move d t o Eastcheap. 341 (1410). 1992). who apparently were clustered within the precinct of St Thomas's Hospital. appendix I. 28 The spice s purchased were salt. whic h may hav e supplie d the m wit h customers . figure 3. C.26 None of these streets lay near the gates or the waterfront. 15 5 (1326) . cumin . 1913) . thre e o f the ten . Martha Carlin. o f course. all with average or below-average assessments. seems to have lived near Londo n Bridge . al l with belowaverage assessments. apples. lived at the foot of the High Street . pp. Thomas. p. Ohio. pp. 251 . ed. bread and herring. bu t ther e ar e many surviving travel accounts that document th e expenditures of wealthy travellers. an d there is only on e recorded payment. i. 631. in the 1350 s both Brea d Stree t and Ironmonger Lan e were recognized cooksho p districts.L . an d thes e revea l a positive aversion t o fast food . spices. fish.34 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe the 1320 s the y had shifte d slightl y east t o Bread Street . Sharpe (London. 616. Chronicles of London. herbs. E 179/184/30. 779-80. 1996). mostly single adults. 1323-1364. From the 26 . C. At Londo n the household' s food expenditure s consiste d o f daily purchases of ale. 268 . 27 The spendin g habit s o f poor visitor s t o medieva l town s are . eggs . pp . ed. The poll tax entry numbers (in appendix I) fo r the si x cooks and fou r pie bakers are: nos 390-91. Instead . Fo r example . almos t impossibl e t o document. Kingsford (Oxford . 25 5 (1355) .M. Medieval Southwark (Londo n and Rio Grande. 29 mustard. another three . N o mea t o r poultr y wa s purchased. 876. flour. al l paying average o r above-averag e assessments. nea r th e Marshalse a an d King' s Bench prisons . the choices t commercial location for trader s hopin g t o sell to travellers crossing the rive r by bridge o r boat. onions and savory. 550. Across the river in Southwark the poll tax return of 1381 listed six cooks and four pie bakers among those assessed. Records of Social and Economi c History. Calendar of'Plea an d Memoranda Rolls. the earliest surviving English household account lists the daily expenses of an unidentifie d househol d i n Londo n an d Windso r durin g th e month of October sometime i n the late twelft h century .3. Woolgar. None of these.28 wine. 1977). Reginald R. ed. frequent purchase s o f bread and occasiona l purchase s o f modest amounts of pottage. 604-5. AD 1300-1378. reprinted Dursley . o f a penny. were among a group of 174 poor householders . At Windsor the household's foo d purchases consisted only of ale. pepper. pea s an d milk . 802-3. new series 17 (Oxford. Gloucestershire. ed.

ale. 7-d. 54 (1939) . Alun Lewis. geese . fish and shellfis h were purchased a s needed. 31 Leyburn was back in Canterbury for on e da y at th e beginnin g o f June. . almonds. a s were preserved fish and modes t amount s of continued style of the hand and the weekdays and feast days mentioned. 4) are printed on pp. ale. oil. chickens. which entailed numer ousjourneys. sauce an d tw o ells of canvas ad coquinam. for sixty-eight capon pasties . . the only prepared foods that he seems to have purchased there were wine. where h e thre w a banque t fo r them . m. travelled t o Norwich . English Historical Review. eggs. Dame Katherine de Norwich . 211-14. Her accounts show that she supplied many of her household's provision s while in Norwic h from he r ow n Norfol k an d Suffolk manors . 3'2 In the winter of 1337 a wealthy East Anglian widow. 1174 . fis h (various) . rice. 119 or 1202 . Even his sauces were made from scratch . new beans. 1265-7' . 1185. afte r a week of negotiations in Calais and nearb y Wissant. and vinegar. Bread was made from her own wheat and oatmeal from her ow n oats. Ther e is no referenc e i n this accoun t t o an y purchases fro m th e riversid e publica coquina so extolled by Fitz Stephen. although she paid to have the grain milled and the loaves baked in the city . Ale was brewed from he r ow n barley. wine. 193-214 . 214 . the onl y hot foo d that he seems to have bought ready-made. pigs . . one-and-a-quarte r carcasse s o f beef . She arrive d i n January an d staye d until April or beyond. p. dried fruit. he also served si x peacocks. The kitche n expenses for the day totalled £ 9 15s. from ginge r an d cinnamon bough t fo r that purpose. bread. ad salsationemfaciendamx s'. In the spring and summer of 1267 Sir Roger Leyburn was engaged in various military duties on behal f o f the crown . rice. porpoise. bacon . 'Roger Leyburn'. Whole carcasses and ham s an d som e poultr y were supplie d fro m he r ow n manors. clove s an d ginger . While his expense accounts for a three-day stay in Canterbury at the beginning of Lent (6-8 March) record purchases offish and shellfish. mustard. and spices in quantity. mutton . 32 His other kitchen purchase s o n that day were bread. to mee t a party of two French count s an d one hundred knights. pp.Fast Food an d Urban Living Standards i n Medieval England 3 5 and supplie d much o f its own provisions. Lewis. Additional livestock and liv e poultry. which he had received as gifts. 1191. Woolgar dates this account to one o f the followin g years: 1168 . the accounts for 28 February-6 June 1267 (from PRO. 'Roger Leyburn an d the Pacificatio n o f England. I t probably is due to this haste and the need to provide so immediately for a large party of hungry travellers that his expenses at Canterbury on 1 June included 16s . He arrived from France on 1 June and travelled the sam e da y to Canterbury . fresh meat . E 101/3/9. almonds. 6 31 In gingibor'canell'. 2d.

poultry and game-birds. Henry Ellis. even at Ware. i. at a cost of 18d. salt . in London. Woolgar. ale and condiments (mustard and galantine). fifteen pasties fo r 4d. eggs . and also kitchen fuel. ii (London. as usual. where fast food was plentiful. Thus. vinegar and galantine). an d purchase d onl y ale. th e thir d nigh t a t War e i n Hertfordshire an d on th e fourth da y they reached London . an d of 200 loaves of wastel bread that were distributed t o the poor. The only hot foods he bough t were a pennyworth o f pottage eac h day . for the day's account also records th e purchas e of twenty-four baked hens and 15 7 pyes. but evidently her kitchen facilities and staff had reached their limit. eggs. and Bulkeley Bandinel. at Christmas time in 1337. fish. but th e onl y hot food s that he purchase d Caulibus. oysters. John Caley. 33 The only prepared foods that she purchased were the occasional halfpennyworth of pottage and small quantities of condiments (mustard .te n hens and capons and twenty-six pyes . worth of baked lampreys. th e abbot purchase d bread . milk. ed. ale . was prepared at home. 204-5).wa s sent out to be baked.. onions and garlic . ready-toeat food. vegetables and herbs. Household Accounts from Medieval England. At Ware. fres h fish and stockfish. mutton.36 Food an d Eating i n Medieval Europe wine. th e abbot purchased almost n o prepared foods other than bread . spices . wine. 34 33 . mustar d and ra w foods along their route. saffron an d mustard. 583-86. For this reference I am grateful to Nigel Ramsay. flour. 35 His travel accoun t is printed in Sir William Dugdale . 1819) . 120 0 eggs. fresh an d drie d fruit. The firs t tw o nights the y stayed a t Elswort h an d Therfield. fresh fish . and th e necessary spices and condiments. Some of the food for his Christmas banquet . The account notes that ninety-two fercula (messes) were served a t this dinner . On the anniversary of her late husband's death she held a great dinner at Norwich for which she purchased larg e quantities of meat. pp. the abbot of Ramsey (Huntingdon) wen t to London a t the behest of the king to meet som e visiting cardinals. 36 Smoked herring . Most of the food. no t once do they seem to have purchased any hot. 35 He an d hi s party travelled about fifteen to twenty five miles eac h day . and herring from th e manor's larder . pp. where the abbot stayed in his own town house. whic h were Ramse y manors. Monasticon Anglicanum. Similarly. pp.36 garlic and mustard. where they stayed at an inn or in hired lodgings . although th e abbot' s party purchased quantitie s of ale. ale . and 2d.. 203-2 7 (accounts fo r anniversary dinner. At Therfield the y consume d herring from stoc k and purchase d bread . which for centuries was the first major overnight stop north of London. At Elsworth the abbot and his party consumed brea d an d wine carried fro m Ramsey . pork . ed. bread. 34 Later that same year.

verjuice. apart from al e and wine. larks. geese. ther e were dozens of cooks at this time. codling. Palmer. However. seafood and poultry. on this road also the fast food tha t they purchased seem s t o hav e been limite d to bread. Armitage Robinson. geese. bake d pasties (pastettis furnitis) and baked lampreys (laumpriisfurnitis). even having his bread baked in-house. bread. poultry and eggs wherever he stopped. mutto n an d beef . 39 only once (at Nottingham. his meals seem to have been cooke d t o order . the only ready-to-eat foods recorded in his daily accounts. and where. While he supplied his table with a variety of meats. beef. 40 His purchases included bread. paid for the bakin g of ten hen s and capon s an d of twenty-six pyes. apples and salmon. ale. and purchased bread . 134-57 . pease pottage. consisted of oysters. and wit h modest amounts of vegetables. bought a bushel of salt for salting the meat. 39 (1924). mutton. 38 One might have expected that travellers along the Great North Road between London and Scotland would have purchased quantities of readyto-eat hot food at the major stopping-points along the way but. whole sheep (skaldyng'). pottag e an d condi ments.Fast Food an d Urban Living Standards in Medieval England 3 7 on tha t occasio n wer e th e dail y pennyworth of pottage an d a pen nyworth o f fritters. where he bought some cheese) d o hi s accounts record tha t he purchase d provisions to take alon g fo r th e road . eels and dace (served with mustard. oatmeal. when the ear l o f Ross travelled from Londo n t o Scotland in October 1303. three partridges. pears. garlic and onions. For example. roach. where he stoppe d for four nights . although they bought raw food in plenty. one-and-a-half sheep and half a veal. 2r-4r. three capons. H e seem s to hav e had n o difficult y buyin g substantial amounts of ale. mm.F. sauces. in February-March 1338. eggs. 39 PRO. meat. were bread and pottage. and onions). doves. frument y and rice. 40 The food s purchase d b y the abbo t in London . pease pottage and condiments. Somerset Record Society . 37 . Even at York. skirwhittes (skirrets: water-parsnips) and verjuice. fres h fish. shrimps. galantine. gurnards. E 101/365/9. lampreys . ale. pork and mutton (seasone d with salt and garlic). 37 A n equall y modest degree o f outside catering can b e see n i n th e account s of the abbo t o f Shrewsbury. herring. although the selection clearly was greate in cities and large r towns than in small towns. and also purchased apples and fritters (frutuyris). in Collectanea. almonds. an d th e onl y prepare d food s recorde d i n hi s accounts there were bread. flour.. eggs . as we have seen. perches. he bought no prepared foods at all except for an occasional purchase of wastel bread. i. ginger. beef. fish. ed. haddock. pp. mustard and galantine. red and white wine. pullets. 38 J. wine. A Collection of Documents from Various Sources. T. lampreys. The Househol d Rol l of Bishop Ralph of Shrewsbury (1337-8)'. sal t and fres h herring. O n Christma s Day the abbot's household consume d twenty-fou r hens. i n additio n t o th e pottage . ed. who spent about three weeks in London a few months later. pottage.

all the food tha t they purchased o n their journey. Larr y D. ed. each. Th e Riverside Chaucer. each (th e lower price for tame mallards. and eigh t pounds of ground pepper . Canterbury Tales.. Benson (Boston . The siz e of the part y is not given. in cities such as Canterbury. but the numbe r o f horses employed fluctuate d fro m about seventy to about 150 . so why didn't they patronize thes e cooks ? An itemize d lis t of th e food s sol d b y Londo n cookshops i s recorded i n 1378 . was purchased raw and cooked from scratch. York and London. and indee d wer e so confident of being able to do so that the only foodstuffs tha t the earl carried with him from London were spices: three pounds of saffron. and mallards. an d te n finche s o r te n egg s for a penny. or thre e roas t pigeons . ) and curle w (6^d. 42 Yet we know that there were commercial cooks. evidentl y did not expec t t o be abl e t o find suitable readyto-eat food along the way. earl o f March. Th e cheapes t item s were small roasted birds: one could bu y three thrushes for 2d. at S^d. 41 . price range were roast hen. Newark . tea l o r woodcock . at 4d. Woolgar. The most expensive items were gam e birds .. Next came roast s costing 6d . Norwich. Grantham. wh o wer e travellin g alon g th e bus y roa d fro m Londo n t o Canterbury. no t eve n a t suc h majo r stopping-place s a s Ware. General Prologue. Thrifty customers who provided their own poultry for a pasty were to be charge d BL. Chaucer's fictional pilgrims. when th e mayo r and alderme n se t the legal prices that cooks could charge for their wares.) . Stamford . For 2^d. . a capon baked i n a pasty was 8d. to 8d. In the 3d. with the exception o f ale. 1987). Hi s trave l account s show that he an d hi s party had n o trouble obtainin g larg e supplie s of food an d drin k along the road. to 4^d. Huntingdon . each. bread and sauces. 41 Similarly. The pric e o f a plain roasted capo n was 6d. A roast bitter n wa s priced a t 20d. They purchased no ho t food s a t all .38 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe Seventy-five years later. Geoffre y Chaucer . Edmun d Mortimer.) .. wine. since they brought their own cook with them to prepare their food. sometimes dozens of them.) . at 4d. Darlington. . Royston. pp. 42 'A Cook they hadde with hem for the nones/To boille the chiknes with the marybones' (etc. ed . to 5d. goose (7d. in the summe r (May-June ) o f 1378. Durham and Newcastle-on-Tyne. sixteen pounds of powdered ginger. However . i. the higher for wild birds). a snipe or five larks for Igd. each: pork (8d. travelled from London t o Scotland a s a commissioner t o discus s border issue s with th e Scots . Egerton Roll 8728. one could buy a roast pullet..) . a heron a t 18d. or baked in a pasty for 5d. Doncaster. lamb (7d. and a pheasant at 13d. Wealthy travellers would no t hav e been deterre d b y reasons o f economy from paying for the convenienc e o f getting fast . rabbit. lines 379-87. hot food . 245-58. printed i n Household Accounts.

45 Leet Jurisdiction i n th e City o f Norwich. p . 21. Leet Jurisdiction i n th e City of Norwich. or to sell pasties that were badly cooked or filled with unwholesome meat. 13 . p. . but in 1304 the cooks there were said collectively t have been guilty on every count.46 In York . and 'trouble' for a capon. 71. G .43 It is clear fro m thi s list that th e cook s of London ha d a t least som e well-to-do clients. pp. ed. pp . 77-80 (Brewers . ed . 1 9 (1287-88) . ed. 1834-36). for a goose. The History of the Twelve Great Livery Companies of London. 157 .47 o In London i n 132 7 the cook s were among nine victuallin g companies Memorials of London. 45 I n th e lat e thirteent h an d earl y fourteent h centuries th e cook s an d pasteler s (pastiliarii) o f Norwich were repeatedly accused o f reheating pastie s and meat that were two or three days old. or 2d. Riley. The supper evidently was a disaster and the chaplain sued the cook in the mayor's court. The Norwich leet roll of 1287-88.44 Why did wealthy residents and travellers routinely shun the cookshops? The answer seems to be. 'stinkin g and abominable' . for the dough. 1425). alleging that the veal had been reheated and unwholesome. p. Willia m Herbert. 2vols (London. pp . Calendar of Letter-Books. i. and serve d veal tha t he had purchased from a local cook. In 142 4 the cooks of York claimed that thenceforth the y were to have a monopoly over the catering offcasts. 44 In 1355 a London chaplain invited some friends fo r supper. ii. 1474 . 46 In 1312-1 3 they were also accused o f reheating fish . Ibid. In 1350 and again in 1362-63 London cooks had bee n forbidden t o charge more than a penny for putting a capon or rabbit into a pasty. 1419 . 4 9 (1295-96) . Hudson . 47 Prestwich. ed. Calendar of Plea and Memoranda Rolls. 251 . Sharpe . . the amercemen t o f a coo k i n 1390-9 1 for sellin g a n unwholesome cooked goose. Medieval Artisans. 16 . 238-3 9 (Goldsmiths . p. funerals and weddings (Swanson. cites men from nearby Sprowston for selling sausages and puddings (hillas etpudinges) in the Norwich market that were made of measled pigs (porcos superseminatos) an d were unfit for human consumption. ed. ordinances o f 1301 forbad e cooks to buy fresh meat in summertime tha t had bee n on sale for more tha n a day. 17). weddings and funerals of those who hosted thes e festivities but did not have their own large kitchens and staff. 150. 8 . at least in part. 3 2 (1288-89) . p. 6 0 (1312-13) . Thomas .Fast Food an d Urban Living Standards i n Medieval England 3 9 l|d. p. that cooks in general had a reputation fo r dishonesty and uncleanliness. 426. to th e dange r of himself and hi s friends. Henry de Walmesford . pp. 5 4 (1299-1300). 43 . baking.. York Civic Ordinances. dinne r parties . a finding confirmed b y public inspection. It is likely that much of their more substantial custom came fro m caterin g fo r th e guil d feasts . Th e cook . p. The fifteenthcentury accounts of th e brewers ' an d goldsmiths ' companie s o f London recor d pay ments to cooks and thei r assistants for preparing dinners and feasts . Hudson . 15-16 . 15 . 1323-64. Cf. for example. 1495 1498 1499). wa s acquitted o n th e testimon y o f six of his fellow-cook s wh o inspected the meat and pronounced it wholesome.

for the first two offences. no. original series. 9 . and Calendar of Letter-Books. 51 Keene. We are not told where the pastelers had obtained their putrid rabbit s and geese. Chaucer's Cook of London. p. 274 and n . p.1373 and 1374 in Calendar of Plea and Memoranda Rolls. boil nor roas t food in public shops. Ibid. Sharpe . ed. G. Riley. 17. Thomas. p. 91 (London. ed. Calendar of Letter-Books. roast or bake unwholesome mea t or fish. to bake into pasties. EETS.52 In York in 1424 the cooks' own company ordinances acknowledged that untrained women did much of the actual cooking. pp. or from cook s at the privat e houses of great lords. 49 48 . Two fifteenth-century English cooker y books include recipe s for 'garbage ' tha t begin: Take fayre garbagys of chykonys. pp. 26. Winchester Studies 2. Sharpe. 72. for sale. Thomas . to cast feathers. . vols 134-35 (1907). the fete. on pain of 40d.50 Similar ordinances were promulgated i n fourteenth-century Winchester and Nottingham. p. hen s o r gees e fro m an y cook o f Brea d Street. 53 Swanson. 1323-64. to sell the best goose for more tha n 4d. This is revealed by an additiona l injunction.40 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe who were identified in a royal writ as 'lax in thei r work' an d wh o were ordered t o be punished. or t o sell beef pasties as venison. p . an the gysowrys'. and had also been baking beef int o pasties and sellin g it as venison. Two Fifteenth-Century Cookery-Books. which forbade the pasteler s to buy 'an y garbage ' o f capons . or to reheat it.. Cf. an d the pillory for a third. pp. 332-33. because they had been illegally making pasties of unwholesome rabbits. ibid. Medieval Artisans.49 'sometimes stinking'. but they evidently purchased thei r offa l at the back doors of up-market cookshops and wealthy households. hair or pig entrails in the street . 1323-1364. ed. cases in 1355. as the hed. ed. p. 8. the lyuerys. 1888). In 1474 the cooks of Coventry were forbidden t o seethe. 251. Bread Street evidentl y was known fo r it s respectable cookshops. EETS. 51 Much the same picture is to be found in Coventry. ed. 52 Th e Coventry Leet Book o r Mayor's Register. and ordere d tha t thenceforth 'the wives of any other artisans should no t bake. 50 Memorials o f London. Mar y Dormer Harris. where in 1421 cooks were forbidden to sell reheated meat. 438. the Host of the Tabard Inn i n Calendar o f Plea and Memoranda Rolls. geese and 'garbage' (offal). cooks o f Bread Stree t were routinely empanelled to scrutinize the products sold by other cooks and pie bakers of London. 398-99 . 53 Contemporary literature als o presents a picture of sleazy pie shops .. Hodg e o f Ware. ed. 1364-1381. Thomas Austin. ed. p. H. origina l series. unless they are competent to do so'. 45 . or to buy dead pik e or eels to bake into pies. 163. The ne w ordinances forbade th e pasteler s to bake rabbit s an d gees e int o pasties. 139. had a suspiciously ulcer ated leg and was mocked by Harry Bailly. p .48 In 1380 a set of ordinances was imposed on the pastelers of London.

Hodge's identificad tion with Ware may be intended t o reflect the unappealing character of the cookshop s there . passu s VI. 59 Francois Villon draws a very similar picture of the die t of the poor in mid fifteenth-century Paris. 70 . 1977) . an d trans . grasses gelines' . spent thei r meagre earnings on rent . x . Lacking even eggs and bacon . who lived wit h he r tw o daughters in a little cottage. lines 379-87. Power .wit h bacon and an occasiona l egg as her mai n source of hot food . Canterbury Tales. 58 This was true even in the countryside. ed. however . lines 249-52: '/temje laisse aux Mendians/Aux Filles Dieu et aux Beguines/ Savoureux morceaulx et frians/Flaons. curds. The Legacy' . while poor widows . the cooks' main clientele mus t have been th e poor . 224 . the saying 'God sends meat. C-text.60 the wealthy layfolk regale Chaucer. for whom hot meat . 278. in late winter and spring. 56 In England. who kep t themselve s and their children b y spinning. said that he ha d bought mea t fro m n o on e els e fo r th e pas t seve n years. . he say s scornfully. 308 . ed. 269-70. pp . 'of a certain butcher who used to sell cooked meats. After th e harvest . poor peasants made do with cheese. enjo y flans. ed . p. TheExempla . Piers Plowman. but the devil sends cooks' had become proverbial by the 1540s. lines 282-313 . 1982) . Chaucer' s poo r widowed dairywoman. first 26 lines. 291-92 . 59 Piers Plowman. 248-50. but did no t sugges t that his wife purchas e thes e fro m a commercial cook. B-text . 223 . Langland asserts that during the lean months of the year. Nun's Priest's Tale. The friar s and nuns. reprinted New York. Th e Poems o f Francois Villon. 94 . their main hot foo d consisted of vegetables and bake d apples. survived o n slender meals made up largely of cold food .mil k and brown bread . hi s 54 unwholesome parsley garnishes and his fly-fille shop. 55 54 . Th e Concise Oxford Dictionary of Proverbs (Oxford . the butche r replied i n astonishment . and Cook's Prologue. His unsavoury sho finds an earlier parallel in France p in the early thirteenth-century sermons ofjacques de Vitry. Galway Kinnell (Boston . 56 Goodman of Paris. mil k and oatmeal. capons and fa t hens. was a luxury. oatcakes and loave s mad e of peas and beans. with perhaps a scrap of cold mea t o r stal e fish. chappons . and eve n ho t food. and serve d u p piping hot . puddings and pasties. General Prologue. an d you're still alive?' 55 In Paris in the 1390 s the Menagier included recipes in his household boo k for making sausages.58 In Piers Plowman. lines 71-97. the y demanded not onl y fres h food .' When one of the butcher's customers . Similarly . pp. 60 Villon. 'you hav e done thi s for s o long a time . 1971).Fast Food an d Urban Living Standards in Medieval England 4 1 Southwark. 282 . either fried o r baked. Thomas Frederick Crane (1890 . hoping t o get a discount. 57 John Simpson. a s notorious fo r hi s sogg y pasties. which would explain why wealthy travellers did not patronize them. ofjacques d e Vitry. hi s reheate d pies . although h e did recommend th e system used by Paris cookshops to fatten geese. 57 Since people of means evidently avoided cookshops. bu t hot food: mea t and fish. . he said. Langland writes that poor townsmen wit h families lived on bread an d thi n ale. 'I have heard'. 201 .

p. When patrons need refreshment in the brothel where Villon lives and works. cream. Kinnell. Winchester (thirteent h or early fourteenth century) . Th e Building of London from th e Conquest to the Great Fire (London. an d a similar row in Newgate. or starve all year round on a diet of barley bread or oat bread and water. leeks . brouet z e t gro s poissons/Tartes . John Schofield and Alan Vince. lines 1485-87. 1595-97. Archaeological evidenc e o f houses on e room dee p has been foun d in London (elevent h century). ed. 86-136 . 65 For example. with a chimney. Norwich and Perth . Building in England down t o 1540: A Documentary History (rev. In London . 13 7 (1979). 1967) . Royal Commission on Historical Monuments. Archaeological Journal. often ha d scant y cookin g facilitie s o r eve n non e at all . Medieval Towns. n 1984). lines 249-52: 'Bons vins ont. pis 117.64 The row s of small houses built for rent to artisans typically lacked kitchens altogether. sauces. still might own little or n o cookin g equipment. pp. in 1335 in York a carpenter contracte d t o build a row of seven rental houses. eac h consistin g simpl y of a ground-floor roo m an d a jettied chambe r above . Joh Schofield. 243-65. 1981). 63 In Colcheste r in 1301 . Poems. was found i n excavation s in Abchurc h Lane . bread and fruit . souven t embrochiez/Saulces. or perhaps the share d use of one. 1767-83. 61 while the poor make do with toast made of brown bread .F. . L. 91. eac h store y containing a single room o f about te n fee t b y fifteen feet. built in 1337.1493-94.65 Those whose lodgings included a hearth. index vol. 6 vols (n. ed. frumenty and rice. 62 The poor in medieval English towns. p. Salzman. nor migh t they be abl e t o buy staple provisions or fue l i n bulk. p. cheese. fromentee ou riz'. he offers them water. The Testament' . pp. a 'potful' o f anything). ed. The Testament' . stews . A number of inventories survive that allow us to look right inside the homes of individual householders to see not only what kitchen faciliVillon. 74. 61 . c . York Historic Buildings in the Central Area: A Photographic Record (London . Poems.42 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe themselves on goo d wines. poached and fried eggs. datin g t o the lat e fourteenth century. Schofiel d an d Vince .d. 72. 64 Rotuli parliamentorum. edn . with ovens as well as hearths or fireplaces. like the poor of imperial Rome. 135. 62 Villon. Kinnell. 1832). pp. flans. Oxford. 1316 a s a row of nine o r te n two-storeye d houses. These rows are discussed in Philip Short. on e detache d kitchen . oef s frit z e t pochiez / Perdus e t e n toute s facons' . buil t c . i. seigneurs o u dames/Soue f e t ten drement nourris/D e cresme. flans . 1994) . There are surviving examples of such rows at York at Lady Row (60-72 Goodramgate). 430-32. . fat fish. line s 1762-64 : ' . eaten with onions . . onl y 3 per cen t (eleven out of 389) of the taxpaying households were described as having a kitchen. were largely restricted to the house s of the wealthy. 11 . l cold foods. Purpose-built kitchens. curd s (mathon) and soup (potee. tarts. 63 In the fourteenth centur y such kitchens were still frequently housed in detache d buildings. althoug h elsewher e i n th e cit y demand fo r spac e seem s mor e commonl y to have pushe d th e kitche n int o th e mai n house-building. Medieval Towns (London . Th e Fourteenth-Centur y Row s of York'. Record Commission.

pp. Cf. a s in London. 1988). Michael R.. pp. Everyday Life in Medieval England (London and Rio Grande. 1994). of which the onl y kitchen utensi l was a brass pot valued a t 3s. Sharpe.Fast Food an d Urban Living Standards i n Medieval England 4 3 ties they had. a blanket. onl y seve n entrie s list kitchen utensil s among the goods of accused felons. 43 (1990). ed. reprinte d in Christopher Dyer. pp . 206. 3-20) . 87-89. 256-79 (Londo n coroner' s roll . a cloak and a chest containing hal f a bushel of beans. His chattels consisted of three small pigs. chiefly brass. i n th e nin e survivin g rolls . and th e other (whos e occupation is not given) had chattels worth only 21d. 67 One suc h man was William de Grymysby . McCarthy an Catherine M . basins and ewers. man y ha d n o cookin g equipmen t o r tableware. see also pp. a broken chest and table . AD 900-1600 (Leicester. th e coroner's rolls and the records of the eyre of 1285 record that . B. 1275-76. a tin pitcher. 1278. Christopher Dyer. but n o cookwar e or tableware.. Sharpe . and a few items of tableware: costrels. 1989). Similar lists of brasswar e occur amon g th e item s pledged b y defaulting Londo n debtor s i n 1303 . ed. those of unskilled crafts men rose from l^d . 107 . wooden cups. bu t eve n wha t cookware an d foo d the y contained. 220. Standards ofLivingin th e Later Middle Ages: Social Change in England. 245-47. p. a shopkeeper of the paris h o f St Benet Fink who killed a man in 1322. C. ed. ed. pp . 66 For example. Riley . Riley.. 87-89. an d rol l of felonies. a board (shippingbord). 'Wages and Earnings in Late Medieval England: Evidence from the Enforcement of the Labour Laws'. 75-76. 68 The kitchen item s most commonly noted were brass pots. in the 1390s . 69 The dail y wages of skilled building workers in southern England rose during th e fourteenth centur y from 3d . 48-50. Calendar of Letter-Books. cf . 2nd series.161-63.g. fo r example. 68 Other kitche n items recorded include d bras s and iro n pans . p. . Ward Perkins. had chattel s wort h 15s . ed. pp. Sharpe . 183-84. pp. bu t in the fourteent h century these were increasingly superseded b y much mor e expensiv e pots and pans of metal. consisting of two worn sheets. 199-200 . I n Oxford. Calendar of Coroners Rolls. of which the cheapest was valued at about 6d. one ( a fishmonger) ha d no chattels. Economic History Review. a pair of sheets. man y of the men named fo r murder or manslaughter wer e said t o have had n o chattels. 305.147-48. J. llrd. Sharpe. man y of the accuse d felon s had n o 66 See. trencher knives. a cloth and othe r small things. c . Penn. Of two men who killed a third i n 1323 .71 Similar level s of poverty can be documente d i n other English town s at this time. Memorials o f London. Calendar of Coroners Rolls. a brass bowl. many of these entries are given in ful l i n Memorials o f London. e.69 while the most expensive cost 6s. and som e posnets and dishes . p. Christopher Dyer and Simon A. 167 . or more than a day's wages for most Londoners.67 In fact .70 A man who killed his wife in 1339. 5d. 70 Before the fourteenth centur y clay pots were commonly used for cooking. ed. Ohio. 245-47 . d Medieval Pottery i n Britain. in the 1340 s to 5d. o f thos e wit h chattels .. or more. 74-75. in th e fourteenth-centur y Londo n coroners ' rolls . 70-71. p. 71 Calendar of Coroners Rolls. pp. a mazer. 1940 .B. a blanket. altogether worth only 6s. London Museum: Medieval Catalogue (London. to 3d. per day during the same period. 1200-1520 (Cambridge. reprinted 1975).173-74. Brooks. p.

44 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe chattels. listing all items of value. e t West Donyland infra libertatem ejusdem Burgi existent'. The overwhelming impression conveyed by this return is that the general standard o f living in Colcheste r i n 130 1 wa s low and tha t many of th e taxpayers. only 47 per cent (18 4 out of 389) owned any metal cookware . 72 . Only 2 per cent of the households (nin e out of 389) had beans or peas. and perhap s als o lacking the mean s t o coo k it a t home.72 An especially full set of inventories was compiled at Colcheste r in the cours e of the assessment of a fifteenth in 1301 .74 bought thei r food from da y to day. Another strikin g feature of this list is the absenc e of prepared food s available at retail in the town. p. 126-55 . Financial and Judicial. ed. 76 Of the tw o identifiable cooks. Her 15d . worth of bread fo r sale. cattle an d sheep . pp. The assessment of 1301 is described in M. lacking the resources to buy it in bulk . 145-236 (coroners ' roll s and eyre) . Oxford Historical Society . Transactions o f the Essex Archaeological Society. 18 (1891). 'Taxation s o f Colchester . and one had some vinegar. bean s and peas. Thorold Rogers. of the 389 taxpayers. 73 Items relating t o food includ e metal cookware . stocks of wheat. 73 Rotuliparliamentorum. bu t stock s of ale do no t appear. 75 Rotuli parliamentorum. 228-38 . 1268-1665. and a few miscellaneous other foods. and abou t 1. pp. The fou r suburbs are Lexeden. pp. The return gives details of personal property for 389 taxpayers in the town and its suburbs. Stocks of malt are note d in thirt y households. who fled after killing a man. had only a worn hanging and a pair of worn sheets. wine is noted in two entries. and 40 per cent (155 out of 389) owned pigs. Poultry and dairy products are not mentioned an d evidently were not assessed. TheEnglishFarmhouse and Cottage (London. AD 129 6 and 1301' . on e In 1298.). only about 4 4 per cen t (17 1 out of 389) ha d stock s of grain o r oatmeal .W. a man from Holywell. altogether worth 20d. Forty-si x per cen t (177 ) owne d cattle or sheep. i. 18-20.5 per cen t (si x out of 389) ha d som e salt meat. who after all represented the economically sufficient household ers. 75 one woman. such as spices and lard . 76 Rotuli parliamentorum. both domesti c and commercial. rye. Despite th e fac t tha t this assessment was taken a t Michaelmas. bu t n o othe r condimen t o r sauce. barley. pigs . worth of loaves for sale (pane venal*) wer e the onl y taxable chattel s she possessed. Two men sold mustard. and few had an y kitchenware. Fo r example. those with chattels often had very little. a huckster . Barley. just afte r the harvest . i. an d fish in only one. see also a briefer assessment for Colchester in 1296 on pp . new series. 243-65.J. oats and oatmeal . Grenested. fres h an d preserve d meat. pp. 9 (1906) . for example. 153-54 (chattel s worth 20d. pp. \. 254 (Agnes la Regratere). Miland'. had 15d . 1961). both assessments are discussed in Georg e Rickword . pp.E. Oxford City Documents. 74 They included a handful of priests and head s of religious houses. 250 (Robert le Mustarder).

78 The seve n identifiabl e baker s are: John d e Geywoo d (Rotuli parliamentorum. 256. however. includin g wheat). 7s. They were among the wealthiest parishes in the city. 233-35. 258. trans. p. Poor in th e Middle Ages. wheat and oats . worth offish. 247) ha d chattel s wort h 18s . Liibeck. 'L a population d e Reim s a u XV e siecle'. 8d. 57. a pan an d th e fish. Braban t an d parts of Holland.). an d 77 . at the heart of the main commercial district.81 Their returns yield a picture of urban Thomas Cocus (Rotuliparliamentorum. p. includin g wheat an d rye) . Th e Poor in th e Middle Ages: An Essay i n Social History. in chattels. In the century and a half following the Black Death the living standards of peasants generally rose. about 2 0 to 3 0 per cen t of the populatio n were poor. and two of them also lacked any stock of grain. that of Saint-Pierre listed 136 5 residents (to which shoul d be added about twenty for eight blanks i n the MS) living in 381 households. 233. Bronislaw Geremek . The retur n fo r th e paris h o f Saint-Hilair e liste d 181 0 residents in 47 2 households. for example . Walter Moteky n (p . 81 Pierre Desportes. 258. the other had no commercial stock on hand. 257. 1987). Augsburg and Dijon the level of poverty was even higher. ing a cooking pot. Peter Pistor (p. including wheat). 11s . In heavil y urbanize d Hainaut . ) and tw o piglets (2s. trans. 79 He found . 79 Michel Mollat . 257. 5d in chattels. . 21s. worth o f chat tels. no grain). i . William so n of Note (p . recent rise s in th e pric e of grain triggere d th e cit y authoritie s t o conduc t a censu s of residents ('mouths') an d thei r stocks of rye. i. Moyen age. 247. his only chattel a tunic valued at 19d. 20s. while in Basel. pp. 7d in chattels. 80 Mollat. 81 n. 6d.77 The assessors listed no stocks of bread among the chattels of the seven identifiable bakers. Genoa. Saint-Pierre definitely. 6d. 77 (1966) . 9^d. assessed for 63s. 44s. when the population was at or near its medieval peak. 263. in chattels. in chattels. 254) ha d onl y 4s. that among the agricultural labourers in the grain-producing areas of the Ile-de-France the poverty rate was only 10-12 per cent in the fifteenth century . sometimes much higher. Thomas Tynnot (p. but Michel Mollat has argued that 'the scene of poverty shifted from th e countrysid e to th e cities'. 463-509 .78 The nearabsence of commercial food stocks suggest that much of the commercial s baking and cooking at Colchester was done with dough an d meat supplied by the customers.) . m At Reims in Februar y 1422. p. p. 80 There are a number of extant city-wide enumerations of population and food stocks for continental cities that support Mollat's gri picture. and Germanus Pistor (p. These inventories all date from the 1280s to the 1330s. Th e Margins o f Society in Late Medieval Paris. those for Saint-Hilaire and SaintPierre. including wheat and rye). . Artois . includ . Jean Birrell (Cambridg e and Paris . The return s of two of the city' s thirteen parishes survive. 8d. Arthur Goldhammer (Ne w Haven and London. William Pistor de Schrebstrate (p. for example. in chattels .Fast Food an d Urban Living Standards in Medieval England 4 5 had 3s. including wheat). comprising a surcoat (2s. 1986). Dyke Coquus (p. and when poverty was widespread.

and in Saint-Hilaire twelve households. i n line with sixteenth-centur y figures for Coventr y (abou t 2 5 per cent) . Almost half the households of Saint-Hilaire. had n o stocks of provisions at all. p. Norwich (2 2 per cent ) an d Worcester ( 2 to 20 per cent). an d bacon (lars) . 86 David Gary Shaw. not eve n the least quantity of peas and beans. exemplified by such indicators as increased consumption of meat and larger. h e found tha t th e municipa l charities could provid e for onl y abou t 120 paupers. and that their principa l work was baking dough furnished by their customers.85 The ful l numbe r o f paupers in Worcester may have been twic e that figure.46 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe provisioning strongly resembling that of Colchester in 1301. 1993) . In fifteenthcentury Worcester. both also included religious. betterbuilt housing.. onl y about 10 per cent of the household s had these . pp.' pp. Desportes. representin g 2 0 per cen t of the populatio n o f th e parish. 112. and the eleventh only a modest supply. David Shaw has estimated that the poor in late medieval Wells numbered u p t o 20 per cen t of the population.82 The return for Saint-Pierre also listed stocks of peas and beans (potage). and 4 1 per cen t o f the household s of Saint-Pierre. 67-70 . representing only 5 per cent of the inhabitants. . Ibid. 229. chapter 7. despite generally continued Saint-Hilaire probably. representin g 3 per cen t o f the population. pp. had no stocks of grain a t all. Standards of Living. In that parish almos t a third of the households . 505 and n . 86 Many of the urba n poo r in late medieval England. while the elderl y alone should hav e made up a t least 9. followed by wheat (33 per cent ) and oats (12 per cent). Ibid. 85 Dyer. 504-8. Cf. 82 Of those with stocks. there clearly remained a large stratum of poor town-dwellers. 83 None of the latter twenty-four householders was a grain merchant.. pp. 495. The total population o f the city at this time probably was about 9000. p. the principal grain was rye (listed for 55 per cent of households). Standards o f Living. 479-80. included infants in these enumerations. Th e Creation o f a Community: Th e City o f Wells i n th e Middle Ages (Oxford. or close t o 40 0 people. 83 In England. whose needs were not met by public charity.84 However. pp. wit h a population o f about 4000 . ten out of the eleven bakers listed in the returns had no grain stocks themselves. it was the richest households that had the largest stockpiles of food. suggesting that the bakers were forbidden t o deal in grain themselves. Not surprisingly. Christopher Dyer has found extensive evidence that urban living standards in general were rising during this period. representing 6 per cent of the residents. 252-53. had more than 39 per cent of the stocks. 'La population de Reims. 84 Dyer. fo r example .5 per cen t of the population. In Saint-Pierre twelve households. Interestingly. 188-210 . accounted for 44 per cent of the stocks. below.

. edn.65. England and Wales (rev. 87 . at annual rents ranging from 6s. 104). Salzman. to 12s. In Durham. by the 1490s . this custom had largel y disappeared. Fo r example. Only The Medieval Records of a London City Church (St Mary at Hill). 89 David Knowles and R .88 But many single working men did not receive meals as part of their wages. 115 . Mor e tha n half o f these (eighty-nin e houses. the churchwardens were no longe r providing dinners for workmen. Many of these houses also had othe r inmates. Medieval Religious Houses. Thi s wa s especially true o f single adults . some o f the carpenter s and othe r workme n doin g day-wor k at S t Mary-at-Hill were given . 1905). In th e 1420s . in addition to their staffs o f brothers and sisters. and several of these took no single or widowed women. 5 2 per cen t o f 169 ) too k poo r me n only. and a n occasiona l breakfast (pp . 3 3 per cen t of 169) too k bot h men an d women. A third (fifty-si x houses . 473-77. who each rente d a single chamber fro m th e church . 339-410 . pp.71 (1426-29).89 the sex of the poor inmates is known for 169 houses. the mason s hired in 139 8 and 140 2 to rebuil d th e dormitor y o f the cathedra l prior y were given thei r meal s in addition to a set fee for the work and a new gown each year. This is suggested by the regulations an d intak e record s o f almshouses . ale and joints of mutton or ribs of beef. noontime dinner s o f bread. of thirty-one almspeople whose sex is known. 90 For example. 128 (London. Medieval Records. London. twenty-four (7 7 per cent ) were men. AD 1420-1559. 88 These meals were described as nonsiens (nuncheons) or none mete. however . were unable t o afford th e rent o f an entir e house . Building in England. Elderly and invalid men who lived alone seem generally to have been considered unabl e to cook for themselves. a t the hospital of the Holy Saviour in Wells (founde d in 1436 ) Davi d Shaw has found that. and would have had t o take their meal s out . ed. original series.87 Some working men had meal s provided a s part o f their wages . Littlehales. A mere 1 4 per cen t (twenty-fou r houses ) too k poor women only. 1971) . but only the wive s of almsmen.Fast Food an d Urban Living Standards i n Medieval England 4 7 rising wages and falling food prices and rents. such as poor wayfarers. whic h heavily favoured mal e inmates. in 1479-81. Of the 326 or so medieval hospitals and almshouses in England and Wale s tha t at some stag e in thei r existenc e house d th e non-sic k poor. pp. Forty-five years later. The same accounts also list two male tenants who shared a house. but the y did sometimes supply them with snack s of bread an d ale . EETS. including three of the church' s stipendiary priests. as part of their wage. 102. Henry Littlehales. pp. Neville Hadcock. th e accounts of the churchwarden s of the London churc h o f St Mary-at-Hill for 1483-85 list ten men. 64. 8d. pp. In al l they list about 110 3 hospitals and aims houses (th e number is approximate becaus e ther e is uncertainty in some cases about the natur e of the foundation or the existence of the house). ed. 112-13 . 90 The se x of the poo r inmate s is unknown in 15 7 of these houses (4 8 per cen t of 326). local sick people or scholars.

93 But many must have lived in garret rooms and other cheap lodgings. 234—3 5 (eyr e of 1285). In the 1470s-80s the rates paid by poor women fo r bed an d boar d ranged from 6d. they had the right to the exclusive use of the hall. and t o share in the use of the kitchen. 4d. the principal private chamber and the cellar. th e board costs in Cambridge of a lawyer's fiancee and her maid came to 3s. 1979) . widows of husbands who died seised in fee of a family hom e wer e entitle d t o thei r 'fre e bench ' fo r lif e o r unti l the y remarried. whic h allowed a widow to remain i n the capita l messuag e fo r forty days only (ibid. 41 n. p. privy and courtyard.48 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe seven (2 3 per cent ) were women. ed . pp. 93 Some single women boarde d with families. 1992) . Medieval Records. Creation of a Community. many o f them . Desolation of a City: Coventry an d th e Urban Crisis of the Late Middle Ages (Cambridge. Some evidence for thi s can be seen in the will s of poor widows. about half of these widows lived alone. 92. Michigan . I n Coventr y in th e earl y 1520s. and was no protection for those who lived in rented accommodation . se e Oxford City Documents. C1/60/168 (Exeter). C 1/61/584-85 (Cambridge). p. where ther e wer e almost nine times as many widows as widowers. 115. in Upon M y Husband's Death: Widows i n th e Literature and Histories o f Medieval Europe. PRO. 94 Charles Phythian-Adams. must have fared badly. 23 .92 Some unmarried wome n boarded wit h families. Louise Mirre r (An n Arbor .95 However. p. p. for example . lacking not only kitchens but eve n hearths . 92 91 . while furnishings. For an Oxfor d lawsui t over free bench. 95 Barbara A . Widow s especially were ofte n identifie d a s a needy group. to 16d. Riley . and a t least two of these were admitted because thei r late husbands had been benefactor s of the house. 448 . 241-43 . 'in extrem e poverty'. C 1/64/764 (London). a week. pp . a week in Exeter and London .94 In London . Some shared a house with another. in which bequests of articles of clothing and beddin g are common . This was more generous than th e common la w of England. ed. Littlehales. 5). Hanawalt.91 Poor single women and widows. C 1/67/20 (Romford). Thorold Rogers. . a week for the meal s of the bo y and hi s servants. accordin g t o Charle s Phythian-Adams . cheerless rooms. this custom only protected the widows of home-owners. ed. This is the pictur e suggeste d b y Robert Wood's recent study of the archdeaconry court wills of forty-nine poor Londo n Shaw. cooking utensils and tablewar e occur much les s frequently. Memorials o f London. p . and many must have ended u p moving into cold. th e renta l o f th e Londo n churc h o f S t Mary-at-Hill fo r 1483-85 lists two widows who shared a house at the annual rent of 8s. The latte r could have remained only for so long as they paid th e rent. That is. The Widow' s Mite: Provisions for Medieval London Widows'. by contrast. In 138 1 th e London widow who had bee n th e guardia n for th e previou s fou r years of the so n of Sir Thomas Salesbur y claimed cost s of 5s. ed. who were thus largely excluded fro m the almshouses. stable. a week in Romford (Essex) .

as we hav e seen. 99 96 Memorials o f London. Riley . a s we have seen. Ohio . often lef t littl e beyond clothing and bedding. ed. ed. p. would have been the commercial bakers and cooks. as well as furniture.Fast Food an d Urban Living Standards i n Medieval England 4 9 widows for th e year s 1393-1415.97 Indeed. (This essay gives an impressionistic rathe r tha n a statistical account of the provisions o f the wills of forty-nine 'poor' and 'ver y poor' London widows .99 Other towns also tried to enforce the availability of such cheap. hot fare. however. 59-69. 96 The thirty-fiv e women's wills surviving in the registers of the consistory court of London for the years 1514-47 give a similar impression: the bequest s of well-to-do women generally included kitchenware or tableware. No r are cookshops a simple indicator of poverty: the poor in small or underpopulated towns lived i n meagre bar e dwellings . G . Sharpe . making my commen t abou t th e relativ e reference s o f clothing/bedding an d kitchenware / tableware tentativ e rathe r tha n certain. 1967) . mourning that his estate was 'to little for the perfirmance o f my beriall and t o rendre m y wyfe a poore chambre'. in 1379 the pie bakers of London were specifically ordered t o 'bak e pasties of beef at one halfpenny . Darlington. Their wills suggest that these women ended their days in cheap lodgings and bare rooms. 'Poor Widows. In Coventry in 1427. Sutton (Londo n an d Ri o Grande . ed. 1994) pp . in Medieval London Widows. 1393-1415'. 13001500. p . ed. 157 . ) 97 London Consistory Court Wills. 98 London Consistory Court Wills. 1492-1547. unprovided with the means to make their own meals. preferring to buy raw food in bulk and to have it prepared and cooked for them in their homes or lodgings . 3 (London. attempted t o legislate price controls on the foods sold by cooks in 1350. London. pp. c. in 1541 one husband acknowledged this likelihood in his will. Carolin e M . Harris . for instance . a n indicato r o f wealth: wealthy residents an d traveller s alike seem generally to have avoided cookshops. Wood. . 128 . in 1362-63 and in 1378. but ha d hearth s an d coul d boi l or fry Robert A. Calendar o f Letter-Books. 111 . on pai n o f a fine of half a mark. They are not. ed. 100 Coventry Leet Book. 98 For all such households th e onl y source o f baked food. The poore r women . 432 . and ofte n o f hot food of any sort. just as good as those a t a penny'. the cook s also were ordered t o make halpeny pyes as other Townes doth on pai n o f half a mark for eac h default. 150 . no . 100 In fact it seems likely that cooks and cookshop s can serve as a rough gauge o f population and econom y in medieval towns. At least some municipal authorities sa w cookshops a s places intended specifically to provide hot foo d for the poor. Barren an d Ann e F . ed. London Record Society. excep t when the y were entertaining suc h larg e number s that their own kitchens and staf f were insufficient. furnishings an d other househol d items . Ida Darlington.

2. 1380. i. as a rough rul e o f thumb. Winchester Studies. Colchester .. (N. 1986). Rotuliparliamentorum. Ibid. and only about three to five were working at a time in the first three-quarters of the fifteenth century.102 while York. the bakers greatly outnumbered th e cooks. the population densit y probably was much lower . 16. York Civic Ordinances. 254-55. 142-43. Rather. with a population of about 3000.104 In the fourteenth centur y there were about as many cooks as bakers in Winchester. Winchester Studies. by the earl y to mi d sixteent h centur y it ha d falle n agai n t o about 3400-530 0 residents . h had some three dozen bakers and an equal number (thirty-five ) of cooks. pp.000 . t o c. pp. 1300.101 had seven identifiable bakers and only two identifiable cooks. but as the city's population continue d t o erode in the fifteenth century the number o f cooks there dropped belo w the number o f bakers. 273-74 and table 26.B. 7.: the victualling entrie s in table 26 are mistakenly printed back to back. 106 Caroline M. 1300-1525 (Cambridge. by contrast. p. Richard Britnell. pp. i. The Fourteenth-Centur y Poll Tax Returns for Worcester'. Worcester had a population a t that time of about 2500-3000 people. As the popula tion there fell in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. Midland History. pies and joints of meat to the ovens of the local bakers. pp. 104 Keene. 366-68.5000-8000 in 1400 . although the y must have carried thei r bread dough . Prestwich. I would suggest. for example.) Winchester's population fell from a total of about 10. rather than on facing pages. Growth and Decline in Colchester. 103 102 . pp. In a town where. i. Barren.50 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe hot food at home. so too did the number of bakers: only about six or seven bakers were active in Winchester at any one tim e between c . c. where poor residents were crowded into cheap lodgings that were unprovided with the means to cook a meal.000-12. and th e percentag e o f singleadult households probabl y also was much lower. 105 Keene.106 Most of the householders ther e 101 p. on e woul d expect t o find a high populatio n density . 21-2 8 (1304) . Th e fe w remaining cooks als o sol d fres h mea t and fres h an d sal t fish. Around th e year 1300. The poll-ta x returns o f 1377 and 138 1 provide some comparativ e figures for Worceste r an d Southwark . 1360 and c .105 which suggest s that there wer e insufficient customer s for meat pies and cooked meat s to keep even the small number of cooks in business. and probabl y a high rati o of single-adult households . which was muc more densely inhabited.103 In Winchester there were about twelv e bakers in 1300 . 1 4 (1989). that in a town where the cooks were about a s numerous a s the baker s o r outnumbere d them . 243-65 (1301). 2. Population studie s for several towns provide some evidenc e for testing this model.

E 179/200/27. 110 while the retur n fo r Southwark lists six bakers and te n cook s (si x cooks and four pie bakers). Chronicles of London. or returnin g exhausted t o a chilly room afte r th e market s were closed. therefore represent no t only the liveliness and opportunitie s of medieval city life. 111 PRO. .Fast Food and Urban Living Standards in Medieval England 51 51 were married. 'Population'. s o vividly reporte d b y Guillaume d e l a Ville Neuve .107 In contrast . Medieval Southwark. the retur n fo r Worcester identi fies thre e baker s and n o cooks. but als o its darker sid e of poverty. an d eleve n unmarrie d householder s wit h servant s o r childre n (P. 108 Carlin. laborious preparation an d clean-up. Those colourfu l street cries of Paris an d London. Ibid. thi s led to th e impositio n o f a nine o'clock curfe w o n th e cookshop s and taverns . printed in Barron . 112 In London the cookshops. fas t food was often thei r only source o f hot foo d at all. pp. 3). For the very poor and the homeless . who lacked acces s to cookin g facilities an d equipment . 24-29. forty-eight single-person households (p . unlike the markets . 'Fourteenth-Centur y Poll Ta x Returns for Worcester' . especially those living alone . Fitz Stephen noted that the publica coquina near the river was open day and night (qualibet diei vel noctis hard). 341 . pp. 110 PRO. In 1410 the king's sons Thomas and John were eating supper in Eastcheap on midsumme r eve after midnigh t when the y became embroiled in a n affray . Medieval Southwark. Southwark . 6-7. appendix 1. 14) . 109 Of the 57 6 householders in Southwark. 112 fast foo d vendors offere d a hot mea l that was ready to eat and required n o time consuming. Medieval Southwark. 108 ha d an extremely high rati o of singletons: 4 1 per cen t of the householder s there wer e single adults.14) . Carlin. chapter 5. were open at night.. table 5. Carlin. and only about 13 per cent were single men or women. misery and hunge r for a hot meal . but whose circumstances made it irresistible. with a population o f about 2000-2100. E 179/184/30. it seems to me that what we are seeing here is a pattern that wa s as familiar in th e pas t a s it i s today. William Langland and the unknown author of London Lyckpenny. ed .4 . Worcester's 138 1 retur n largel y exclude s single men. snatchin g a meal i n th e middl e o f the day . 268 . Fast foo d flourishe d i n medieval English towns among those who could least afford it. and wh o did no t hav e stocks of food and fuel . 107 For this tabulation I have used Barren's figures from 137 7 o f 845 total taxpayers and 31 3 wives (p . 1 9 per cen t were single men an d 2 2 per cent were single women. 109 Strikingly. singl e women and servants . 15 9 servants and seve n children (p . Kingsford . pp .111 In conclusion. 13) . For the working poor.

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not t o abstinenc e fro m th e pleasures of life of which centenarians normally boast. She said that she was 108 years old. as in th e 1590s . if we use the term to describe a small-scale rural cultivator. and that in some years the harvests failed in successive years . reissue d as. 115-16 . No r can she be denned as a peasant. revealed in Goubert's work. But let us not b e to o pedantic abou t thi s example .4 Did the Peasants Really Starve in Medieval England? Christopher Dyer My title i s taken from a chapter headin g fro m Th e World W e Have Lost. This was Alice George. I have benefited fro m comment s and criticism s mad e o n thos e occasions . a s Elizabeth visited Worcester in 1575 . an d ha d lived in an urban environmen t for al l of her life . Richard Smith and Christopher Thornton . Peter Laslet t was anxious t o enquir e i f th e English had suffered th e same miseries as their French contemporaries . pp. 1983) .1 P. th e poin t i s that. periodi c episode s o f hig h mortalit y were more likely to be th e product s of epidemic disease than crise s of food supply. 1 . although Laslett felt that conditions were far from idyllic. having been bor n i n Saltwich in Worcestershire. In England. sh e ha d live d t o a rip e ol d age . includin g Mark Overton. The World We Have Lost. Alice Georg e cam e fro m th e salt-makin g town o f Droitwich. 124-25 . Further Explored (London . who encountered John Locke in Oxford in 1680 . Incidentally. In that distinguished book on historical demography and social structures in earl y modern England . Earlier versions of this essay were given as papers at th e universitie s of Birmingham. In characteristically colourful fashion he produced an example of an individual wh o showe d tha t som e peopl e survive d the threat s o f th e period. 1971) . Th e World W e Have Lost (2n d edn . I am gratefu l to Joel Rosentha l an d Marth a Carlin fo r their subsequen t help. though sh e must have been misleading Locke. Exeter an d Kent . Laslett. Various scholars have contributed information an d advic e t o this paper. and remembere d a t the age of sixteen going to see Elizabeth I at Worcester in the year of the Armada in 1588. The ol d lady's claims make a good story. althoug h sh e ha d experienced hunge r i n he r youth . sh e attribute d he r longevity . pp . London . but to her avoidance of any medicines.

there was nothing cheaper than the oats grown exclusively in much of the northern uplands. ed. Appleby. 97-116. Famine. Solar. 3 J. Schofield. Eve n in th e nort h th e ris e i n agricultural productivity in th e seventeenth century .B. 1979). 'Die t i n Sixteenth-Centur y England : Sources. below. nor o f such benefits as payments in kind. Medicine and Mortality i n theSixteenth Century (Cambridge . societes. Annales: economies. Cf. 1-22. A. 1978). ho w far bac k mus t we look t o fin d a differen t situation? In the early middle ages there are plenty of chronicle accounts of famine deaths. Chapter 5. 1'occident d u hau t moye n age' . California. S. Health. 1035-56. Disease and the Social Order in Early Modern Society (Cambridge. because the y did not tak e sufficient not e of the earnings of the whole family. 4 P. Economic History Review. pp. If those relying on wages were most vulnerabl e a s food price s wer e drive n u p b y shortages.2 More recent work has offered a n even more optimistic picture. . Problems . civilisations. Even our view of the plight of the unemployed o r partially employed has been raise d by new and mor e positiv e assessments o f the effectivenes s o f the poo r law system. has served to confirm Laslett's belief that English people in the sixteenth and seventeent h centurie s di d no t suffe r majo r crise s of subsistence . nor o f the availabilit y of cheaper foo d tha n tha t recorded i n th e accounts o f institutions normally used as sources of data. unlike their souther n an d midlan d contemporaries . 44 (1989) . meant that the English rural population suffere d muc h less in the crises of the 1690s than did their French counterparts.54 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe More recent research. w e now understand tha t earlier calculations of real wages exaggerated the poverty of those wh o received them . 1989). Famine in Tudor and Stuart England (Stanford. pp. pp . using quantitative rather than anecdotal evidence. 'Poor Relief and English Economic Development befor e th e Industrial Revolution' . 4 English chronicles record famines in the elevent h an d twelft h centuries . Worlds Within Worlds: Structures of Life i n SixteenthCentury London (Cambridge.. Webster. in C. Rappaport. 123-61.B. Possibili ties'. P. Walte r and R . 3 If th e peasant s di d no t starv e i n Englan d i n th e sixteent h an d seventeenth centuries . Bonnassie 'Consommation d'aliment s immondes et cannibalisme de survie dans . Appleby. picking out reports of cannibalism as indicat ing an especially severe episode. the y did not have inferior grains on which to fall back when bread corns failed . pp . eds. and the improvements in the marketing network. Appleby argued that the people of the north suffered in bad years because. 1989) . Indee d fo r the Continen t Bonnassie has attempted a typology of such descriptions. 48 (1995). an d th e pric e series suggest som e 2 A.

Farmer.A. His 'pension' was to come partly from access to a curtilage ( a garden) nex t to the hous e an d seve n selions of land. 7 Hereford an d Worceste r Count y Record Office . She ha d certainly survived the food shortages of the 1480s and 1520s. son of Joh Sybily.Did th e Peasants Really Starve in Medieval England ? 5 5 very bad harvests at the end of the twelft h centur y and in 1201-4. even though she may not have been old enough t o have experienced th e famine of the late 1430s.6 n Now we should b e as sceptical of this piece of folklore as of Locke's gullible account of Alice George. We could attemp t t o investigate the questio n o f peasant hunge r b y anecdote . 5807. but they cannot provide us with conclusive evidence to solve our problem. Hallam. 009:1 B..A . 1.m y exampl e i s Margare t Norto n o f Hartlebur y i n Worcestershire (no t far from Alic e George's birthplace . 7 (I am grateful to Richard Smit h who provided m e with a transcript of this document) . 8 Queen's College Cambridge . ref . and o f four bushels of barley and four bushels o f peas at Christmas. Instead I will turn t o more scientific evidence fo r peasant eatin g an d fo r their lack o f food.L. and then turnin g to the period afte r the Black Death and the supposed lifetim e of Margaret Norton. 985/B. and partl y from an allowance each year of two bushels of wheat and two bushels of rye. with a view to discovering when the threa t of starvation receded . ii. 2636/169 92372 . 722. vol. 4. 5 Our focus must be the period between 1204 and 1500 . . 7 These isolated individual s have an immediate interes t for us. beginning wit h th e lat e thirteent h an d earl y fourteenth centuries. Trices and Wages'. 717-18 . 1042-1350. bu t Margare t lived in a village and ca n be regarded a s a real peasant). ed. While we should not ignore 5 D. When she was buried on 12 September 1545 the compiler o f the parish register noted that she had died when she was sixtee days short of her 122n d birthday.E.the purchaser of the land was providing an annuity the size of which was related t o market demand. A characteristic example was the record of the transfer of a five-acre holding in 1328 at Oakington i n Cambridgeshire b y Richard Valletus to John . Peasant food in the decade s around 130 0 is recorded i n some detail by agreements t o maintain retired peasant s i n manoria l court rolls . 787-88. both a t Michaelmas. ref. This could b e interpreted i n a commercial light . and i f it was the same perso n wh o die d i n 154 5 she mus t have been ver y old.8 Richard had made a contract with his successor that n he should be provided with a retirement hom e converted from the former bakehouse o f the holding. fol. 6 Hereford an d Worceste r Count y Record Office . Th e Agrarian History of England and Wales. except that a widow called Margaret Norton appear s i n th e Hartlebur y records o f th e 1490s . in H. pp .

al e brewed from barley malt was availabl in many counties. eds. P.R. The maintenanc e contracts. pp. The tota l allowance of twelve bushels would not hav e provided muc h grai n fo r ale . in M. suggesting that many retired peasants did not drink ale regularly.perhap s two acres. as a good deal of the calorifi c value of the barley would be lost in brewing. 1984). 151-54 . Smith. Above Valletus i n the hierarchy of village society were prosperous peasants . 1200-1520 (Cambridge. eds. also tell us a good dea l about the marked regional difference s i n eating patterns.H. the wording of other agreement s makes i t clea r tha t non-commercia l considerations . Dyer.H. 1991). Dyer. C. Felling and R. 9 Th e allowances had bee n obtaine d fro m th e crops of the holding and were intended for the consumption of the retired peasant . pp. and th e peasant s ther e ofte n at e barle y bread. in T.M. not for sale. Social Relations and Ideas: Essays i n Honour of R.56 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe the shortag e o f land an d John's willingness to sacrifice a great dea l to gain a precious holding at that time. Standards of Living in the Later Middle Ages: Social Change in England. a s they did i n part s of Suffolk. 1983). e but th e meagr e amount s o f barley and th e prominenc e o f oats in th e 9 The agreements are discussed in R. or even more. There were important differences also in the pottage and brewing corns . A good numbe r o f maintenance agreements did provide twelve bushels or thereabouts. 'English Diet in the Later Middle Ages'. and the major ingredients of a thick pottage (pea s and some of the barley). The Manorial Court and the Elderly Tenant in Late Medieval England'. and plenty of malting grains to allow them regular and abundant ale consumption. 197-206. Norfolk grew limited quantities of wheat. and perhaps barley). Hilton (Cambridge. Death and the Elderly (London. Smith. Richard Valletus was being provided with the raw materials for the baking of bread (from wheat and rye. .whil e quantities of rye were consumed in Norfolk an d Worcestershire . Thirsk.the inhabitants of counties like Essex and Surre y enjoyed especially high level s of wheat-bread consumptio n . whose allowances of sixteen or twentyfour bushels. would have contained enoug h food to feed a servant. 10 C. playe d some par t i n th e fixin g o f th e amounts. ale consumption would have been possible becaus e he had crops from seve n selions . as well as indicating the differen t levels of food and drin k consumption amon g peasants with varied resources.10 In Richard Valletus's case. C. often tenants of ayardland of thirty acres or so. from th e wheat-eating peasants of the south east. Dyer andj.M. and to obtain approximatel y 2000 calories per da y it would have been neces sary t o hav e consume d th e barle y i n soli d form . suc h a s the loca l customary rules about what was decent and fitting for the support of an elderly person . 39-61. c . Aston. pp. Life. Coss.

. carbonized grain from archaeologica l excavation s and othe r stron g indirec t evidence. Medieval Archaeology. While wheat accounted fo r almos t two-third s of the retire d peasants' grain allowances. 12 11 . 143 . 13 Hallam. they tell us only about the die t of those with land holdings that could be used a s the basis for a retirement contract. The existence of poorer people wh o at e muc h les s well i s indicated by a comparison between contracts from Somerse t manors and tol l corn payments recorded fo r the mills of Taunton in the same county. Similarly in Surrey.Did th e Peasants Really Starve in Medieval England ? 5 7 allowances of Essex and Somerse t peasant s sugges t th e us e of malte d oats to brew an inferior ale. pp. pip e rolls of the bishopri c o f Winchester. Agrarian History. Carcasses of salted meat were to be delivered annually to a few prosperous retired peasants . 11 A few contracts mention th e availabilit y of food an d drin k i n additio n t o cereals an d legumes. Some allow the retired peasant the use of a garden or orchard. A few make specific reference to supplies of cider. Some agreements specify such small quantities of grain . but we can be sure of the predominance o f oat cultivation i n thos e region s fro m mil l tolls . tithe receipts . from informatio n kindly supplied b y Christopher Thornton . poultry and other animals imply that the diet included eggs. give a rather favourable picture of peasant diet. 12 We have negligible evidenc e for maintenance agreements fro m th e south wes t an d nort h wes t (Devo n and Cornwall . ii.392-94.eigh t bushels or less . Norfolk and Hampshire. 153 . Three Deserted Medieval Settlement s o n Dartmoor : A Report o n th e Lat e E . the grain processe d b y the mills contained onl y 26 per cent wheat and 2 3 per cent rye and maslin. because most grain was ground by households or commercial food processors. oatmeal pottag e an d al e brewed from oa t malt . ed. pottage and sometimes ale. Beresford. G. and rye and maslin (a rye and wheat mixture ) only about a tenth. Standards o f Living. The keepin g of pigs.tha t they must have provided only a small proportion of the income of the retired peasant. Hampshire Recor d Office . These maintenance agreements. p. whereas the contracts for maintenance relate to the retirement of the better-off peasants. peasants were not allowed many pulses (peas and beans) an d their pottages would have been base d o n oatmea l o r barley. 381. Th toll corn presumably reflects e the balance of overall grain consumption in th e district. which Dyer. p. summoning up as they do a picture of at least adequate quantities of bread. First. 13 The inhabitants must have depended on oat cakes baked on hot stones or iro n plates . 1209-1342. Marie Minter' s Excavations'. bacon and dairy products. 23 (1979). and nort h o f th e Derbyshire Peak).406.

o n ale. 17 E. and tha t we should therefore be cautious in taking too favourable a view of peasant diet. see E. iii. 1991). H. Fox. and ar e representative of a large section of society. H. many of them young people who might aspire to hold land later in life.58 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe caused visitor s to vomit. Harvey. circa 1200-1359 (Oxfordshire Record Society . 153 . pp. 42-52. 825 45.I . 50. The Worker' s Diet'. 304 . Medieval Archaeology. Yorkshire Archaeological Journal. and we would expect a t least a small proportion o f products from animal s and gardens to find their way onto the peasants' tables. 'Devon and Cornwall' . p. and sometimes fish. ii. 12 . M. but who in the meantime had t o accept a more precariou s standard tha n thos e with a holding..A. pp. 138 . ed. D. Miller.M. w e have to tur n t o th e food an d drin k give n a s part o f th e reward s of wage earners.L. Agrarian History. 2 (1958). North Tawton. fruit an d vegetables. dairy products. Detailed inventories of peasants' possessions and tax assessments sometimes include the bacon and salt meat stored in the house. Thes e employees belong t o the lowe r levels of rural society : they would ten d to be cottagers and smallholders. 1989). Often w e are tol d th e value of the differen t food s consumed. or entirely landless workers. 15 Cf.A. inD. 1976). and the amount of vitamins and minerals consumed. 'Animal Remains from Wharra m Percy' . 'AnimalRemains'. Jope and R. which gathers a great deal of data and draw s some optimistic conclusions.. Hallam. Abundant evidence shows that peasants ate meat. 46 (1974).. in Hallam. Austin.14 In th e ligh t of this evidence we must remember tha t the bulk of our direct information comes from sociall y and geographically advantaged sections of the population in the thirteenth and early fourteenth century. 1348-1500 (Cambridge . Harvest For an iron plate . Ryder. Manorial Records ofCuxham. 15 A further strand in our assessment of the quality of peasant food must relate to its nutritional balance . in E . although these appear rather inconsistently in the maintenance contracts. 14 . Thelfall. TheDeserted Medieval Village ofThrislington. ed. which alerts us to the very high proportions of cereal foods in the diet. s proportion o f protein for example. 712-14. County Durham (Society for Medieval Archaeology Monograph Series.S. Rackham. fish.J. Oxfordshire.16 And excavations of deserted village sites yield th e bone s o f a variety of domesti c an d (mor e rarely ) wild animals and birds. 146-58 .E. pp. They had a lower standard of living than better-off peasants. and th e proportion o f the die t tha t thes e represented . 16 P. Devon'. peasants were involved in pastoral husbandry and horticulture. p . Th e Agrarian History o f England and Wales.D.17 In order to gain insights into the daily quantity of such foods. according t o a sixteenth-centur y traveller to Devon. 'Excavations of a Medieval Settlement at Beere.g.

pottage an d ale. in which th e productio n o f grain an d othe r foodstuff s ca n be calculate d within tolerabl e degree s o f accuracy. salt cod. in midland or southern England . Maintaining an average food intake of c. Thi s lead s us to conclude tha t th e uppe r laye r of peasants. pp. as on the manors of Norwich Cathedral Prior y in Norfolk aroun d 1300 . cheese and bacon. the die t consisted mainly of barley bread and oatmea l pottage. received bread an d oatmeal which accounted for a half of the foo d payment s b y value. thei r meagr e quantit y can be assumed . Ale accounted fo r anothe r 2 8 per cent . C 545. for example . an d prepared food s such as puddings and pies from retailers. would have bee n abl e t o provid e fo r a family o f five to seve n (thei r families tended t o be rather large ) with ample quantities of bread. tithe s an d taxe s ha d been paid . we fin d tha t 7 6 pe r cent were derived from bread an d pottage. 19 18 . an d thei r Worcestershire Cathedral Library. C. and indeed would have had sufficient surpluse s of cash i n goo d year s to bu y fish. 'Changes in Diet in the Late Middle Ages: The Cas e of Harvest Workers'. Everyday Life i n Medieval England (London. They would have had no difficulty in supplying themselves with dairy produce regularl y and preserved meat. A furthe r approac h t o th e estimatio n o f peasan t die t come s fro m reconstructing th e incom e an d outgoing s o f different households . but with the latter foods in such small quantities that we can calculat e fo r ever y 2 pounds o f barley bread a harvest worker received 2 ounces o f cheese. 1 ounce of meat. whether in the village or the local market town. fish and dair y produce wort h less than a quarter o f the total wage in kind. 2000 calories per da y would have presented n o difficulties . and no doubt expecte d them to work hard. well fuelled with energy from a relatively full diet . leaving meat. with about thirty acres of arable and access to an appropriate share of common pastures. joints o f meat. 19 This heavy bias towards cereal foods of course relate s to an unusua l time of year. and w e can se e how much would be lef t fo r th e family' s consumptio n afte r rents .Did th e Peasants Really Starve in Medieval England ? 5 9 workers in the north Worcestershire manor of Bromsgrove in 1321-22. When the quantities are indeed specified . 18 As the latte r group of foodstuffs wer e much mor e highly priced tha n th e grain . I f we quantif y thes e allowance s in term s o f calories. supplemented b y herrings. 1994) . when demesne manager s were anxious to attract workers so as to complete th e harvest on time. the yardlanders. This does not fill us with much optimism in estimating the quality of normal daily food consumption . and th e needs of the land in terms of seed and anima l feed deducted. and 4 ^ ounces offish. 77-99 . Dyer.

We have seen that old age posed n o great threat to tenants who could trade off their land against a pension. but not all old people had enough acres to negotiate successfull y for an adequate allowance . 38-40. Within each year there would be periods of relative abundance during and after the harvest and slaughter of animals .. Ault. and would have sought positions for them in households which needed servants and could afford t o feed them. o r t o giv e much i n charity ) an d threatenin g th e health of the smallholders who depended o n the market for their staple diet. A longer-term cyclical fluctuation again affected all peasant households — the change s in the fortunes of the household as the parents aged an d children matured.60 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe diet would have been quit e varied and palatable. 1995) .from August to December. with very smal l quantities and infrequent supplies of ale.O. Tenants of middling holdings must have encountered special hardship if they had man y children who reached maturity . the halfyardlanders with about fiftee n acre s would have had difficultie s in supplyin g a family of five with ale or mea t in any quantity regularly. and the shortage of paid work outside the peak seasons. meat and dairy produce . grain prices rose. pp. would have needed t o buy grain to supplement their own produce. 1972). they were Dyer. 660-62 . In an y case not al l contracts were kept.deprivatio n o f meat imposed n o great hardship on people who ate meat irregularly in any case. Given the low rates of pay for unskilled workers around 1300. as eating much more than basic rations of cheap cereals. 110-18. 21 W. Dyer. depriving the better off of their surplus (and incidentally making it difficult t o employ other poorer neighbours . the annual harvest fluctuations made a large differenc e t o the well-being of all groups. 21 In addition to the seasonal cycle. ed. who accounted fo r a substantial minorit y of the rura l population . Standards of Living. with insufficien t lan d t o feed thei r families . and the new year's crops were not yet ready to harvest. 20 . 900-1350'. Open field Farming in Medieval England: A Study of'Village By-Laws (London. 'Were Peasants Self-Sufficient? Englis h Villagers and th e Market . Peasant eating fluctuated much more than that of the more privileged groups in medieval society. 20 On the other hand. in E. it is hard to conceive of the smallholders. as provisions began t o run out . Campagnes medievales: I'hommeet son espace (Paris . C. But the hardest time would have been i n th e earl y summer. pp . Poorer peasants observed Lent out of necessity as well as piety . Mornet. The provision i n villag e by-laws tha t th e poo r coul d pic k green pea s an d beans fro m th e end s of strips in th e fields would have been a valuable means of keeping families going at this difficult time. and smallholders . pp.

1270-1400 (Cambridge . and occasionall y dispute s appear in the court records or are mentioned in contemporary literature. Society an d Demography i n Haksowen. and argue d tha t every time wheat prices rose above 7s. who died at times of low grain yields and consequently high food prices between 129 0 and 1325. Marriage an d Death in a Medieval Parish: Economy. Now there ar e some important arguments that can be used t o question an d qualif y th e simpl e conclusion that th e peasant s di d starv e in the worst years of the decades around 1300 . 53-56.22 As the population of England at this time stood i n the regio n o f six million. 38 (1985) . Smith . L. R. whethe r becaus e of old age or the premature death of an adult family member. 1980) . I will deal with them in turn under six headings. which was advanced by Professor Postan and Dr Titow in the 1960s . the Great Famine alone must hav e claime d a t leas t 600.00 0 lives . The Rura l Population of Essex in the Late r Middl e Ages'. The y made th e mistake of presuming that every heriot represented a death. pp. has to some extent been discredited. pp. They counted the heriots (death duties) paid by tenants on the estates of the bishopric of Winchester. 1991). Campbell . pp. Widows are conventionally regarded as a major deprived group. 'Demographi c Development s i n Rura l England . th e theor y tha t th e peasantr y were poised o n a knife edge of subsistence at this time.depending on the locality. Economic History Review. There were in addition occasional bouts of high mortality in other bad harvest years in the same period-in 1293-95. and thi s resulted in almost a million deaths. All tha t thi s evidenc e fo r fluctuation s and variation s in th e foo d consumption o f peasants tells us is that some section s of rural society were poore r an d mor e vulnerabl e tha n others . per quarter . ed. an d i f we add th e tol l fro m lesser episodes the tota l figure must amount to near a million people . In the Great Famine of 1315-18 between 10 and 1 5 per cen t of the populatio n die d o n th e manors where there i s good evidenc e for th e siz e of the mal e population. but a widower would also have encountered serious difficulties in managing the holding withou t his wife's contribution o f labour an d skills . That they did can be demonstrated simply enough. Poos. At any time in any peasant community a sizeable minority of households were sufferin g from som e life-cycl e disadvantage. ther e wa s an accompanyin g rise i n th e deat h rate .Did th e Peasants Really Starve in Medieval England ? 6 1 formally recorded because the retiring peasant suspected that the incoming tenant might no t kee p hi s or her word. Before th e Black Death: Studies i n th e 'Crisis' o f th e Early Fourteenth Century (Manchester . 22 . First. Z. Life. . Razi.1310-12 and 1321-22 for example . 1300-48 : A Survey'.M.S. 38-45 . i n B. 515-30 . Bu t it does no t prov e that they actually starved.M.

as the coincidence between high grain price s and hig h mortality is clearly established in a number of local studies. 1974). B. 'Heriots and Prices on Winchester Manors'.23 Granted that episodes of high mortalit y were not occurrin g as frequently a s Postan thought. demonstrating a degree of social hardship. As modern experienc e shows . but floods or droughts in poverty-stricken societies like those of Bangladesh or Ethiopia cause much more suffering than an earthquake in California or inundation s i n th e Netherlands . For example. Population and Nutrition: An Essay o n European Demographic History (Cambridge. but not necessarily mortality. ed. Rowberry. M. in M. and that high prices le d t o increase d activit y i n th e lan d market . Inheritance an d th e Lan d Market in a Fourteenth-Century Peasant Community'. Before th e Black Death. 23 . Secondly. 25 But this still does not remov e the association between hunger and ill-health. 'Populatio n Pressure . A third argument would be to suggest that we have miscalculated the resources o f the peasan t population. Z.M. 9-15 . heriots were paid when a tenant surrendered a holding. 'Late Medieval Demography: A Study of Mortality among the Beneficed Clergy i n Wester n England ' (unpublishe d BA dissertation.F. associate d wit h th e Italia n demographer Livi-Bacci . The vulnerabilit y of th e English peasantry to episodes of bad weather tells us something about the peasants as well as about the climate. Harvey. as elsewhere. 107-49 . Campbell . 1991). Postan andj. and that in periods such as the fifteenth centur y there was no connection between nutritional statu s and 'crisi s mortality'. Titow. Livi-Bacci .. 1984) .62 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe but it is much more likely that on the Winchester manors. we ar e stil l lef t wit h a numbe r o f ba d year s in additio n t o th e Grea t Famine. ed. We must presume that famine-related diseases such as typhus spread from the hungry poor to their better-nourished neighbours. The notion that these years were just an acciden t of climate will not provid e an adequate explanation. Poorer peopl e i n considerable numbers sold lands in hard times. 7-9 . Smith. disaster s happen everywhere .M. in R. pp. B. pp. anothe r lin e o f argument . because higher than average mortality is reported amon g the paris h clergy and gentry who cannot hav e been sufferin g fro m hunger. 87-134.S. Land. University of Birmingham . pp. M. Kinship and Lifecycle (Cambridge . 24 A number o f the episode s of high deat h rate s in th e lat e thirteent h an d earl y fourteenth centuries were no doubt the result of epidemic diseases. 'Introduction : The "Crisis " of the Earl y Fourteenth Century'. which by no means removes the idea that starvation was part of the medieval English peasants' experience. Postan. Essays on Medieval Agriculture and General Problems of the Medieval Economy (Cambridge . pp. perhaps we are to o M. in Campbell . 24 M. 25 RJ. . 1973). would emphasize that peopl e d o no t di e i n large numbers from th e effect s o f hunger but from disease .

smal l game and other supplements.26 Peasants probably ate more vegetables and fruits than th e aristocracy. 1100-1540: The Monastic Experience (Oxford. Trice s and Wages'. t but als o on th e whol e family' s earning s fro m employment . 28 Farmer. pp . Everyday Life.wil d fruits. 27 B. As customers who normally drank ale saved their money to buy food. for example. 26 . the 'cottage economy' of the smallholders depended no t jus on the meagre wages of the head of the household . 760-79. It must be emphasize d initially that coasta l villages had ready acces s t o seafish . There are tith e record s fo r garde n produce . outside th e woodlands. 'Gardens and Orchard s in Medieva l England'. another apparent assurance of an underlying prosperity among the peasants might be sought in the commercial growth of the thirteenth C. uplands and wetlands . Alternatively. Dyer. leaving a limited range of wild flora and faun a either fo r dietary supplements o r source s of revenue. and do not take sufficien t account of the peasants ' undocumente d gardens . an d th e siz e of garden plot s is recorded in both documents and the archaeological remains of deserted village sites. and th e upper classes seem to have survived on remarkably low levels of vitamin C. 60-61.27 Nor would the bon e remain s fro m village sites support th e notio n tha t peasant s consumed much game.Did th e Peasants Really Starve in Medieval England ? 6 3 fixated on the supply of grain from th e fields. the ale wives were deprived of a market for their products. pp. in Dyer . which point to an abundance of labour priced at a very low level because of the lack of employment periods of food shortage the market was depressed. o r th e foo d for fre e that could be found in woods and wastes . To some extent these items in the peasant economy are recorded an d can be quantified . Harvey. whic h gave thei r inhabitant s advantage s over inland peasants in thei r abilit y to consume cheap anima l protein. Living and Dying in England. We should not ignore the ecological balance in the lowlan d districts where most people lived . They do not sugges t that gardens were either large or very productive. but thi s was not a culture which put muc h value on th e fres h produc e which we regard as so important for a healthy diet. We cannot escape from th e miserabl e wage rates of the period . 1993). But for the majority of inland peasants the story looks less optimistic. pp . 116-21.63. 128-30. the arabl e acreag e was so extensive that only a fifth or less of the lan d was uncultivated. F. o r fro m th e sal e of such commoditie s as rushes gathered fro m th e commons or peat dug in the local turbary. Fourthly. an d fro m activities such a s retail trade .28 The petty trading and manufacturing which helped many cottagers was very vulnerable to economic fluctuations .

32 Agraria n historian s hav e R. N. Life. pp. 1993).M. who lived precariously from occasiona l earnings and marginal activities. 32 B. 'Commercialisation an d Economic Development in England. 144-82 .c. see R. A Commercialising Economy. 30 29 . Hilton. leather goods. pp.S. becaus e it represented a fundamental social and economic shift in the late twelft h and thirteenth centuries. pots and pans. They specifically were tempted to borrow money and food. 19-23 . but whose precise number s remai n uncertain . Livestock . agricultural tools and so on. 1991). see Razi.there was also a shadowy. Campbell. subtenants and casual workers who sometimes owed small payments of cash or labour to lords. and Productivit y Trends in English Seignorial Agriculture. ACommercialising Economy. eds. but of course these were precisely the people who suffered from the high prices in hard years. Surely the proliferation of local markets and the rise in the urban population poin t t o a wealthy society? Many craftsmen and trader s were gaining a living from supplyin g the peasant s with their clothing. Labour and Livestock: Historical Studies i n European Agricultural Productivity (Manchester . in R. Overton. semi-documented cohort of servants.H.M.64 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe century. 1000-1500 (Cambridge.H. The Commercialisation of English Society. Th e urba n populatio n containe d a proportion of traders and artisans prospering from the growth in demand. but they wer not the direct victims of the hungry years. 31 They benefited from th e market but the n found that it offered n o mor e than an illusion of opportunity. The e commercialization o f the period should not be underestimated. 37. Land. And cottagers are the people who appear fully in our records . andDeath. England. 31 On the problem of indebtedness. pp. pp.29 The problem here is that there has never been an y doubt about the spending power of the many thousands of households of the upper and middling sections of the peasantry. Short-term employmen t opportunities an d the expansion o f retail trade must have played a part in fuelling population growt h by tempting young peopl e who lacked stabl e resource s t o marr y and se t up a new household i n a cottage. but als o a fringe o f migrants driven i n fro m th e countryside . Campbell and M . 79-151. pp. 30 But it did not always aid the plight of the rural poor. housing. 1086 . 1995). 68-73.H. eds. Britnell. 1208-1450' . on som e o f the trap s of commercialization.M. 'Land . Mayhew. A fift h interpretatio n tha t ha s emerge d fro m recen t researc h int o regional farming systems emphasized the productivity that could be gained from intensiv e exploitatio n o f th e fields. and the n foun d that they could not repay. Britnell. Marriage. 76-94. in Britnell and Campbell. Th e English Peasantry in the Later Middle Ages (Oxford. Labour. 1000-1300'. R. in B. 'Modelling Medieval Monetisation'. Campbell.S. 81-82. pp.H. Britnell and B. or who when they died were expected t o yield up patheti c heriots of old and nearl y worthless clothing. 1975).1300 (Manchester.S.

to endow children with smallholdings who would no t ordinaril y have inherited an y land. th e us e o f abundan t inputs o f labour allowe d much highe r grai n yield s per acre . and that consequently production was inadequate to meet the needs of society. with proper provision of land and goods to give the new household a sound basis. pp. responsibl e and caring society. enabling the m t o form new households. 37-45. If the restraint s o n populatio n growt h were to some exten t pushe d I owe this observation to Mark Overton.wer e universal. Razi. A Medieval Capital and its Grain Supply: Agrarian Production and Distribution in the London Region. in densel y populated part s o f Norfolk.Did th e Peasants Really Starve in Medieval England ? 6 5 presumed tha t th e mediocre yield s of the midlands and the south between thre e and four time s the seed plante d . The Myt h of the Immutable English Family' . we cannot imagine that peasants were marrying casually or hastily. If we look at the lists of tenants and holdings in surveys of manors in the twelfth an d thirteenth centuries.A. in popular d custom marriages still depended o n agreements between families. Mediaeval d Earl y Fourteenth-Century Norfolk'. 30 (1993). Murphy. 140 (1993).M. 1300. Galloway . c. 49 (1987). Surely in this closely regulated. th e openin g u p o f a mor e com mercial society may have led thes e beneficen t fathers to believe that a living could be made without a substantial land holding . 33 The sam e researche r who discovered th e Norfol k farming system has now turned hi s attention to the rest of the country. Histori cal Geography Research Series. 496-516. or the assarting of new land. W e find peasant father s taking advantage o f the lan d market. 34 33 . 35 E. because th e ver y cheapness o f labour whic h allowed intensive cultivation method s gav e the workers a reduced diet. Past and Present. 7-10. which must imply that bad harvests spelt danger for the poor. D. Keene an d M . 36 As we have seen . with their remarkably stable lists of customary tenements. 34 Finally. Campbell. some evidence that during the thirteenth centur y customar y restraints o n marriag e ma y have been relaxed. there is the question of social institutions.S. Th e Decisio n t o Marr y in Thirteenth . However. 36 Z. and has to conclude that in normal years the subsistence requirements of the population were barely matched by total agricultural production . There is. Bu t thi s does not mean tha t the inhabitants of this region escape d from hunger. Clark. pp. pp.35 Although the church maintained the legality o f vows exchanged between couples as constituting vali contracts. a variety of mechanisms would prevent mass impoverishment and starvation? Perhaps the most important of these institutions were the social customs and practices surrounding the decision to marry. however. B. J.

an d th e vulnerability of the poore r sections of the communit y was increased b y their dependence o n th e purchas e o f grain. Hanawalt. 37 Families looked afte r thei r own members. for example. the casualties would surely have found a safety-net i n th e variou s charitable organizations? We are aware of a wide range of methods by which charity was distributed . After all. Dyer. The village community in its more formal guis e allowe d gleaning and pea-picking to the genuine poo r the others had t o earn thei r living in the harvest. The mortalit y and th e suffer ing of those whose lives were disrupted by these years cannot be attributed simply to an accident of bad weather. The population s of the mainly oat-growing counties were in danger from bad harvests as no adequat e cheaper substitute was available to them. Many villages. we cannot escape the conclusion that large numbers of English peasants really did starve i n th e wors t years. American Journalo f Legal History. especially when they were tested by an extremely bad harvest. 234-57 . Standards o f Living. Villager s must have aided thei r poo r neighbour s wit h free meal s or offers o f employment. by the type of maintenance agreement already mentioned. In addition we should not idealize excessively the medieval sense of responsibility. or at least the statistics reveal a sudden ris e in accusations. would simply not hav e enough spare capacity to feed the many poor. 1300 1348'. But doubts must surround the effectiveness of these measures. But the crisi s had a s much to do with the overheating of the market and the various dislocations this caused as with the Malthusia n excess of people. 1 8 (1974). 'Economi c Influenc e o n th e Patter n o f Crime i n England . and families. Normal peasant eatin g o f th e perio d pu t a heavy emphasi s o n a n imbalance d intak e o f cereals . 1290-1325. 38 To complete the discussion of the period c. 281-97 . pp.churc h institutions provided relief for the poor.66 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe aside by new economic developments in the period. as the less well-off borrowed money and food or sold their land in order to pay debts. And in desperation man y people turned t o crime. especially in many places which lacked a stratum of wealthy tenants. the bulk of our information about the remedies for poverty during the Great Famine and other years of hardship relates to self-help. We do not need to accept Postan's thesis o f overpopulatio n an d th e ecologica l damag e t o th e lan d t o recognize that thi s was a period o f crisis. pp. from the almonries of great monasteries to the distributions made by the incumbent and th e laity of the paris h church. 38 37 . no matter how well disposed towards their neighbours. B. or b y providing non-inheriting children with parcel s of land or allow ances of grain.

an d muc h else besides. 83-85. And fresh fish was substituted for dried cod and sal t herrings. Always we must remember tha t harvest workers were especially privileged. the tenants of larger holdings sough t t o emplo y them . Talbot Donaldson. Fresh meat. lines 303-11. 1975). Everyday Life. eds. In fac t such a worker would not have aspired to buy so expensive a commodity a wheat. or water). Dyer. All of the causes of earlier hardship were ameliorated as the population declined . passus 6. pp. and that everyday production and consumption of preserved fish. in Dyer . Those who remained as wage labourers found themselves in a superior bargaining position. In districts with a cider-drinking tradition such as Sussex. including beef. bacon an d dair y products continued at a high level. The trend s in food consumption are confirmed by the comment s of contemporaries. 'Wages and Earnings in Late Medieval England: Evidence from th e Enforcemen t of the Labou r Laws'. So much meat was provided for workers that cheese diminished in importance in the diet. Penn and C. Piers Plowman: The B Version (London . The number of smallholders was reduced as they found it possible to acquire more acres. good ale (instead of the secondbest brew.g. one pound o f meat and six pints of ale. ale was preferred. Norfolk harvesters in the early fifteenth century were allowed for every two pounds of bread.40 The prosecutions under the Statute of Labourers in the late fourteenth century show ploughmen refusing to accept employment without receiving fresh mea t (rathe r than salted ) and wheat bread. 185. and many of them could have afforded t o eat wheat bread. white bread. a labourer woul d have needed t o work for forty-eigh t day s to pay for a quarter (eigh t bushels) of wheat. and hot dishes of fresh meat. Land Dyer. 41 S. In the late thirteenth century. who complained in particular that servants and labourers could demand wheat. The direc t evidenc e o f foo d allowance s to worker s shows a steady increase in the late fourteenth century in the quantities of ale and meat given t o workers. G. and despised cabbages. Kane and E . was provided instead of bacon.A. an d th e deman d fo r craf t workers increased with the growth of rural cloth-making .. E. Butchers increased in numbers and prominence in both towns and country.wheat bread was baked instead of that made from barley and rye. The amoun t of land cultivated by each family increased.41 Developments in the food trades suggest a shifting demand. p . 'Changes in Diet'. 40 39 . 39 All over the countr y th e qualit y of foodstuffs give n to harvest workers improved . In the fifteent h s century a comparable unskilled worker could acquire the cash to buy a quarter o f wheat in fifteen days' employment.Did th e Peasants Really Starve in Medieval England ? 6 7 Peasant eating in the late fourteenth and fifteenth centuries went through a real transformation.C.

46 We should therefore not be surprised to find that. which shows 'cokett'. they aped the standards o f their lords. In th e villages the ale house became a more permanent institution. 44 Norfolk Record Office. but that made from th e finest white flour. 28 . 42 . where ale was sold regularly. The Household Book o f Dame Alice de Bryene (Suf folk Institut e of Archaeology and Natura l History. eds.G. MCR/B/26 (wastels were sold in the market of Hingham. 1461). The sons and daughters o f peasants were recruited int o service in the households of the loca l gentry and clergy . . Dale and V. p. 1 'treat' and 'wastell' loaves being sold in 1374). Indeed w e know that urban baker s carried thei r wares into the countryside for sale.A.B . 2636/169 9237 2 (i n 147 4 bakers from Bewdle y and Worceste r sold bread at Hartlebury. 1983) .45 When village fraternities held their annua l feast they presumably hired a cook experienced in preparing meals for the gentry. Chapter 9.g. which tended to replace the intermittent and short-term ale selling of the pre-plague era.44 We ca n detec t i n al l thes e change s a cultura l a s well a s a materia l dimension. the bakers were producing notjust wheat bread. Rosser. 43 The striking feature of the records is that even in a district not previously noted for its wheat consumption. 20-38. perhaps from better-off households who bought ale rather than brewing it themselves. 1931) . 33 (1994).K. Th e English Ale-House: A Social History.a more important and valuable commodity than the wool tha t has received most historical attention. 45 M. the wastel loaf. In particular they aspired t o ample dishes P. 430-46. 1420. the record s o f small-town courts contain reference s in the lat e fourteenth an d fifteent h centurie s to the enforcemen t of the assiz e of bread. when peasants and rural workers gained th e opportunit y to improve their diet. Worcestershire. often during the Christmas season. 43 E. which was bought by customers from th e surrounding villages as well as the townspeople themselves. See below. n Finally.42 This must reflect a more sustained demand. Hereford and Worcester County Record Office. and above all from groups of poorer people who had previously bee unable t o afford t o drink ale regularly. such as Norfolk. 'Going to the Fraternity Feast: Commensality and Social Relations in Late Medieval England'. often alongside prepared foodstuffs. 46 A. PRO SC2 210/7 (cour t roll of Pershore. Journalo f British Studies. Redstone. 1200-1830 (London . Worcestershire). A feature of the new peasant diet was a tendency to emulate the consumptio n an d styl e o f the aristocracy . Clark. pp.68 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe everywhere was converted from arabl e t o pastur e i n respons e t o th e market for meat . Lords and ladie s (lik e Alice de Bryen e of Acton in Suffolk) woul d invite their tenants to special meals. The mode l provide d by the upper class must have been familia r to the peasantry. 009: 1 B. pp .

and ca n we be certain that they were wrong? On emulatio n in diet. Peasan t tableware . Medieval Pottery i n Britain. There are indications also that the prevalence of boiling as a means of food preparation was supplemented by more roasting and fryin g i n the style of the wealthy in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. towels. 49 M.. bu t also thei r tabl e manners .47 They may also have shared the aristocratic disdain for fresh vegetables . 47 . p. There i s certainly no evidenc e of expanding peasant horticulture i n the post-Black Death period. attractively glazed drinkin g cup s by the fifteenth .Did th e Peasants Really Starve in Medieval England ? 6 9 of meat and fish. however.a higher intak e of refined bread . a t Fishlak e i n Yorkshire : Rotulorum collectorum subsidii (poll-ta x o f 1379). they were also adopting a diet unlikely in the opinion of modern nutritionist s to lead t o good healt h .48 But then the lesser gentry an d paris h clerg y . rathe r the opposit e a s gardens an d orchard s were abandoned becaus e of the difficulty o f findin g labou r t o work them . and doubtles s hoped t o drink the daily gallon of ale regarded as standard i n aristocratic household budgeting. fatt y meat and alcohol .M . pp. 51 Harvey. McCarthy and C. cannot be regarded as an improvement according to modern fashion. 34-71. ewers and basin s liste d i n th e inventorie s of peasan t households .di d not use large quantities of these expensive imports either. judging fro m th e tabl e cloths . 15.51 But they undoubtedly felt happier with their new style of eating. AD 900-1600 ( e most immediat e rol e model s fo r the improved peasant diet . see S.decorated jugs from the late thirteenth century. All Manners o f Food: Eating and Taste in England and France from th e Middle Ages to the Present (Oxford . the negativ e side of this emulation of the aristocracy because.provid e further evidence for peasant meals as occasions for a little display and refinement. at least for special occasions. 50 Ibid. though th e presenc e o f 'spicers' in small towns and market villages might hint at a more general market for imported condiments. 110-14. 107-8 . 1988). pp. Yorkshire Archaeological Journal. althoug h peasant s were acquiring patterns of eating which added t o th e variet y and attractivenes s of meals. 48 For example . 54-61 .whil e at th e sam e tim e reducin g th e amoun t o f fruit an d vegetables. 1985) . The y would not hav e bee n able to afford muc h wine or spices. Mennell. Brooks. and this prejudice may have influenced peasant tastes .6 (1879-80). 49 Not only were th e foodstuff s an d cookin g o f the aristocrac y imitated. pp. 50 We should note . They aimed also to be able to eat fine white wheat bread.contemporary writers thought that garlic. onions and leeks were typical poverty foods. pp. Living and Dying.

219-42. 1465-1500'. which ushered i n an er a o f cheap an d plentifu l food . E.54 If my analysis of eating and food shortage among the medieval peasants is right. 381-406 . After the n th e peasants no longer starved . except in East Anglia. Pollard. and th e era of hunger-driven mortality had ended. 1978) . Th e North-Easter n Econom y and th e Agrarian Crisi s of 1438-1440'. and on e dimensio n o f that development lay in th e virtual disappearance of life-threatening subsistence crises. Journal of British Studies. pp. Epidemic Disease i n FifteenthCentury England (Leicester. Gottfried. This takes us beyond the history of food. th e safety-ne t of charity would have been growing in effectiveness. and of some towns. pp.K. is the key date. 88-105 . pp.S .52 After a concentration of bad years between the Black Death and 1375. an important turning-point in history occurred during the fourteenth century. 2 5 (1989) . But. After tha t there was little evidence of serious food shortage until the early sixteenth century . There may even have been accumulated stocks of corn hanging over from one year to the next. Standards o f Living. pp . had been developing from the mid fourteenth century. Northern History. 33 (1994) . 'Local Changes and Community Control in England. constables and perhaps with contributions from the parish fraternities. and tha t it was a turning-point for the economies of some magnates' estates. 96-97. Perhaps the yea r 1375. 9 (1988). where an epidemic coincided with the famine. managed b y churchwardens. and collectio n of money on th e basi s of rates or other local levies. 271-72 . and supplemented or even replaced the mor e informal machinery of personal and famil y charity of earlier generations. could b e consumed by humans once more. because it implies that English people could spend more on nonDyer. fo r thos e wh o di d suffe r deprivation . grain prices became relatively low and stable . an d th e historian s o f the earl y modern perio d ar e correc t i n their upbeat view of food crises in the succeeding centuries. with almshouses. there is little evidence for excess mortality. pp . Parish-base d suppor t for th e poor . We cannot doubt tha t the famine of the 1430 s caused muc h disruption. Som e shortfall s in harvest s returned i n th e early fifteenth centur y and culminate d i n a run o f very poor crop s in the late 1430s. Clark. acting as a cushion against hunger . Huntingdon Library Quarterly. R. 'Social Welfare and Mutual Aid in th e Medieva l Countryside'.53 The general increase in wheat eating presumably meant that in hard times the cheaper cereals and pulses .70 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe In fac t th e lif e expectatio n o f the peasantr y seems to have increased at this time. A. 53 52 . In addition . 54 M. ofte n use d i n thi s period a s animal feed. especially in the north. Mclntosh.

'Food Expenditure an d Economi c Weil-Bein g i n Early Modern England'. furthermore. Shammas. Journal o f Economic History. 43 (1983) . we can observe a divergence between the history of England an d tha t of mainland Europe . pp. th e continenta l peasants stil l occasionally went hungry. The proportio n o f income spent on food in pre-industrial societies is discussed in C.Did th e Peasants Really Starve in Medieval England ? 7 1 food items than ever before.55 And. and we can trace to this period th e growth of steady demand from a mass market for such goods as woollen cloth. 89-100 . Fo r generations after Si r Joh n Fortescue compared the well-nourished and independent-minded English population wit h thei r miserabl e Frenc h counterparts . 55 .

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1 Some manorial records indicate mortality of 10 per cen t or more over the course of the famine. H. 67 (o n . Massachusetts. Past and Present.5 Cannibalism as an Aspect of Famine in Two English Chronicles Julia Marvi n From 131 5 t o 1318 Englan d .suffere d thre e rainy years and si x ruined harvest s in a row. p . th e famine seems to have marked the begin ning of the century's economic decline. mass hunger. In some places. high prices. Thackeray (Londo n an d Cambridge . all in tim e of war. Josephus. 3.28. 2 Medieval account s o f the famin e address a set of common themes . table 1 . St J. fata l epidemic s among suc h livestock as had survived the famine.5. Jacobu de Voragine. Titow. 1926). The Grea t Famin e an d Agrarian Crisi s in England. The JewishWar. England was visited with the murrain . graphs 1. 59 (1973) . prosperity did not return until well into the 1320s . o n whic h thes e observation s are based. and trans . Books 7V-V77. 2. many of them can b e foun d i n Josephus' first-century Jewish War. Kershaw. ed . murrain. i (London and New York.and fifteenthcentury English chronicles describe the dearth with language as potent as that of the Blac k Death of 1348. By 1316 famine had begun . Seed-corn rotted in the damp. p. 'Heriots and Price s o n Winchester Manors' . mass malnutrition led to death from disease. 1 . an d trans. vi. 193-213. Postan an d Jan Z . strange diet and the explicit attribution of the disaster to the wrath of God. 1928) . trans. and th e desperat e resorte d t o crime . 3 These topic s are by no mean s unique to 1316 . 11. s The Golden Legend.6. 2nd series . d much o f Europe . 424-25. v. William Grange r Ryan (Princeton . including the rains that provoked the crisis. widespread mortality . 1315-1322' . Th e Ecclesiastical History. and th e rate may have been highe r stil l in the towns : fourteenth. ed. 4 Josephus' description of mass starvation i n the besieged city of Jerusalem circulate d through Eusebiu s an d the n (vi a Eusebius) th e Golden Legend. Th e Great Famine' . 1 1 (1958). 407. 3 See the Appendix for a list of chronicles consulted . Eusebius. scarcity of goods. A year or two after the rains stopped an d the harvests began t o improve. 50 . 2 Michael M. Kirsopp Lake. Economic History Review. New Jersey 1993).5-3. A version o f th e stor y appears in the late fourteenth-century Middle English poem Th e Siege of Jerusalem. 4 an d i n report s o f Ian Kershaw. in others. corpses too numerous to bury. c.

i. 1996) . the fourteenth-century VitaEdwardi Secundi and the fifteenthcentury annals of Bermondsey. origina l series . continued . uel quod deterius est. The Grea t European Famine of 1315. with careful attention t o the English campaign s St James th e Apostle) . 1964). comederent. 188 (London. th e anonymous VitaEdwardi Secundi. 9-10. E . and t o conside r what these particular episodes demonstrate abou t their authors' method s of constructing history . but their stories are striking. (There was a great shortage of everything because of the floods of the previous year. and corn . Th e Siege o f Jerusalem. 7 He believes that the surviving version lacks a final revision: the text ends with 1325. ed. 6 I n thi s essa y I examin e tw o suc h accounts. asserts in the first major article on the famine that cannibalism 'certainly was common:'.)5 Only a few chronicles o f the famin e o f 131 6 refer t o tha t stranges t o f strange diet. nam quartarium frumenti. 1212-1301. Speculum. quod raro inueniebatur. to as much as 20s. Kershaw more cautiousl y suggests that report s 'ma y hav e been exaggerated bu t they testify to the stark horror . Noe l Denholm-Young. One o f the mos t nearl y contemporary account s o f the famine . the bark of trees and eve n more unpleasant things. 22. Day. Kershaw . 6 Henry Lucas. for example. in order to analyse the immediate func tion o f cannibalism i n thei r representatio n o f famine. EETS. xiv . Antonia Gransden (London . The Great Famine: Northern Europe in the Early Fourteenth Century (Princeton. ad xv. 148-5 0 for hi s consideration o f accounts of cannibalism. cortices arborum. a quarter. and trans . pp. Kolbing and M . Famine resulted so that the poor had to eat horsemeat. See pp. The Grea t Famine'. cost from 15s . which was very scarce. 5 Chronicle of Bury St Edmunds. when Edward II was deposed and murdered. . pp. Many died of hunger. such as that of 1258 in the chronicle of Bury St Edmunds: Penuria omnium bonorum sequitur precedentis anni inundacionem. expressing hopes that would be crushed by the events of 1327. Ne w Jersey. and trans. cannibalism. impressed upon th e memorie s of contemporaries'. William Chester Jordan's magisterial book. accordin g t o its modern editor . 5 (1930) .1316 and 1317'. solidos uendebatur. solidos et eciam usque xx. ed.74 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe other medieval famines. 1932) . . and some moder n readers have give n the m credence.7 The chronicle a s a whole offers a detailed accoun t of the reig n o f Edward II. VitaEdwardi Secundi. dates from 1325 or 1326 and appears to b e a n entirel y origina l work . lines 1063-96. appeare d afte r thi s essa y was written. p. Vnde tanta fames orta est ut pauperes carnem equinam. 275-76 . Noel Denholm-Young (London. pp. xvii-xviii. ed. 355. p. innumerabiles fam e defecerunt. 1957).

homines et pecora simul disperdat. Nam inundatio pluuiarum omn e fer e seme n consumpsit . . si Dominus post hec flagella incorrigibiles nos inueniat. we should have perished long ago. Fo r the floods of rain have rotted almost all the seed. 64. (By certain other portents the hand of God appears to be raised against us. . and I firmly believe that unless the English church had interceded for us. baronial politics and th e affair s of the church. p. nisi intercederet Anglican a religio. ai t eni m dece m iugera uinearu m faciun t laguncula m unam. Nam anno preterite tant a fui t habundanti a pluuie quo d ui x licui t hominibu s frumenta colligere uel horreo salu a recondere. so freely that Denholm-Young considers the chronicler 'outspoken in a degree that would be madness in any rising man' an d conclude s that he mus t have retire d fro m publi c lif e before writing the Vita. xix. Throughout. It is opinionated and moralistic . 8 The chronicle' s account of the famin e extend s across three annals: that fo r 1315 . The write r begins . Sheep generally died and othe r animals were killed by a sudden plague . et constanter credo quod. the text is in a vivid historical present. dispersi fuissemus elaps o tempore multo. fo r he says that 'ten acres of vineyard shall yield on e littl e measur e an d thirt y bushel s of seed shall yield three bushels'. tha t for 1316. considering the endless rain and widespread mortality.Cannibalism as an Aspect o f Famine in Tw o English Chronicles 7 5 in Scotland.)9 The chronicler alludes specifically to Isaiah and. Anno uero presenti deterius euenit. Per alia quedam sign a apparet manus Dei contra nos extenta. . whe n governmen t price controls failed an d widesprea d hunge r set in. . in tanturn u t uaticiniu m Ysay e ia m uideretu r expletu m esse . uses the language of that 8 9 Ibid. In the present year worse has happened. and that for 1318. Valde autem nobis timendum est ne. appropriately . when th e famine abated . Oues autem communiter perierunt et alia animalia subita peste ceciderunt . p. whe n th e rain s tha t cause d th e deart h began . e t trigint a modii sementis faciunt modios tres . For i n th e pas t year there was such plentiful rai n tha t men coul d scarcely harvest the corn or bring it safely to the d it speculates freely about the e author never hesitates to point out the lessons to be learned from th e bad ends of rebels .. so that the prophecy of Isaiah might seem now to be fulfilled.. I t is greatly to be feared tha t if the Lord finds us incorrigible afte r thes e visitations. he wil l destroy at once bot h me n an d beasts. Wales an d Ireland . Ibid. .

the writer is quick to provide reassurance. consumptaque est omnis caro . subsequent plenty will improve the situation) . . . his past-tense referenc e t o the murrain shows that he was writing or at least revising his text after the fact: manorial records indicate tha t the murrain in most places began late r than 1315 and reached it s height in late 1316 and 1317. pp. 'Na m licet raritas annonam faci t cariorem. usin his foreknowledge to indicate the full scale g of the disaste r a t the outse t an d t o emphasize its likeness to the Flood . 69-70. even at the start of the passage. Hii enim propter frequentes incursus Scotorum maior i tedi o laborabant. 20-29. The anna l for th e followin g year. from man even to beast). For there. 10 . quos maledicti Scot i sui s uictualibus cotidie spoliabant. another tribulatio n brough t o n b y human wickednes s and alleviated through God' s grace an d th e effort s o f the virtuous. that in Northumbria dogs and horses and other unclean things were eaten. and he destroyed all the substanc e that was upon the earth .76 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe great biblical catastrophe.. . Douay version (New York. England' s desperate situation present tense and the desired resolution future tense. 12 Vita. als o sounds a t first as if it is written in mid crisis: the beginning of the dearth is past tense.. Nevertheless. 'The Great Famine'.d. and Genesi s 7:18. . describing the failure of the government's attempt to regulate prices but concluding.12 He then claims that the famine is the worst in a century. et delevit omnem substantiam quae erat super terram ab homine usque ad pecus' (fo r they [the waters] overflowed exceedingly: and filled all on the face of the earth .). . (I have even heard it said by some. th e Flood. n. on account of the frequent raids of the Scots. 1975 ) an d al l translations from th e Bibl e from Th e Holy Bible. 21 and 23: 'Vehementur inundaverunt [aquae ] e t omnia repleverunt in superficie terr a . that many thousands have died of hunger and pestilence. habundantia subsequens reddet meliorem' (fo r although scarcity of corn raises the price. pp. and all flesh was destroyed . 11 The chronicler cannot be simply recording th e events as they happen. 1316. 13 Ibid. p. an d tha t Aquibusdam etiam audiui relatum. 69. Isaiah 5:10: 'decem enim iuga vinerarum facient lagunculam unam et triginta modii sementia facient modio s tres' (translate d in text).. as the accursed Scots despoil the people daily of their food. work is more irksome. All Latin quotations from th e Bible come fro m Biblia sacra iuxta vulgatam versionem (Stuttgart . h e i s taking the authoria l stanc e o f an immediate eyewitness.10 Though he speaks of 'the present year'. Instead . quod in partibus Northumbrorum canes et equi et alia immunda sumebantur ad esum. 11 Kershawuses records of wool exports and manoria l sales of livestock to assess the timing and extent of the murrain.) 13 Cf..

spare th y people! For we are a scorn and a derision t o them who are round about us). sicut predixerat uir Dei Heliseus. denariis uendebatur. eteni m Dominus dabit benignitatem. and i n th e followin g passage h e l quotes Vulgate Psal m 64:1 2 an d 1 4 and Vulgat e Psal m 84:13 . 14 . recuperauit diuina gratia. th e inclemency of the weather destroys th e fatness of the land. Eueniunt aute m omnia a malitia habitantium i n ea. triennio iam regnans cursum consummauit. 70 and nn. Th e preceding passage runs. 1-3 . th e year the famine abated . aeri s intemperies deuorat pinguedinem. (For Saturn. et sibi mitis Jupiter ordine successit. O Lord. 'Terr a fructifera uertitur i n salsuginem. ut mater filii carnibus uesceretur pro penuri a uictualium . Ibid. Porro Joue regnante cessabun t pluuiales unde.. complaining of the wickedness o f the inhabitants of the land an d imploring God's mercy i n a passage tha t is a collage of biblical quotations. For the Lord shall give that which is good and our land shall yield her increase.) 14 Again. Modius tritici. Domine.Cannibalism as an Aspect o f Famine in Tw o English Chronicles 7 7 The chronicle r is cautious here. in the ascendant now for three years he has completed his course. but i t prepares th e wa y for th e Vitas entr y for 1318. cold and heedless . the valleys will grow rich in corn. and mild Jupiter duly succeeds him. brings rough weather that is useless to th e seed. The chronicle r takes the en d o f the famine as one of a series of signs that God's favour is returning to England: [Cessauit] sterilitas ilia que diu nos afflixit. carefu l t o balance th e stor y with th e warning that he has only heard of these distant events from others . he makes another sudden. qui ann o preterito pro xl. and he even offers an explanation of the circumstances that might have driven the Northerners to such an extreme. The writer quote s Vulgate Psalm 106:3 4 (also recalling Jeremiah 12: 4 and 13) . Under Jupiter these floods of rain will cease. hodie pro sex denariis emptori libenter offertur. quo d octoginta aurei s pridie uendebatur . omnibu s inmundu m i n crastino repu tatum erat . corn is sown and tare s ar e brough t forth . et terra nostra debit fructum suum. et modius simile pro stater e uno uenundatus . as well as Joe 2:17 and Vulgat e Psal m 43:14 . et habundantia omni[um] bonorum terra m Anglorum multiplicite r foecundauit. The text' s shift s in ton e could also b e said t o reflect psalm structure . Nam caput asini. ualle s habundabunt frumento e t campi replebuntur ubertate . cheerful turn . Spare. Al l this come s fro m th e wickednes s o f th e inhabitants . bolstered by both astrology and th e Psalms: Saturnus enim securus et frigidus asperitates procreat inutiles seminibus. p. such prophetic serenity in the face o f disaster does not speak for true contemporaneity . parce populo tuo. Subsannan t et derident nos qui sunt in circuitu nostro ' (Fruitfu l land is turned into a salt-marsh. Si c olim tamdiu obsessa Samaria. After bemoaning England's destitution. Parce. seritu r frumentum e t procreatur lollium. and the fields be filled with abundance.

according to the word of the man ofGodElisha. and England became fruitful wit h a manifold abundanc e of good things. Cf. Thus it once happened when Samaria was besieged for so long that for lack of food a mother fed upon th e fles h o f her son . 15 . 'Mulie r ista dixit mihi da filium tuum ut comedamus eum hodie e t filiu m meu m comedemu s era s coximus ergo filiu m meu m e t comedimus dixiqu e e i die alter a d a filiu m tuu m u t comedamu s eu m quae abscondit filium suum' (thi s woman said to me: Give thy son. that the land recovered through divine grace. 16 (IV Kings in the Vulgate): Tactusque est modius similae statere uno e t duo modii hordei statere uno iuxt a verbum Domini' (and a bushel of fine flour wa s sold for a stater. according to the word of the Lord). Here i s the story in part: a woman has called upon the king of the besieged city for help.and of God's deliveranc e .17 In her survey of English historical writing. 16 IV Kings 6:28-29. H e ends his list of good portents with a citation of Paul: 'Si Deus nobiscum. p. And she hath hid her son) . that we may eat hi m today . and w e will eat m y son tomorrow . who can be against us?). and tw o bushels of barley for a stater. and ate him. 89-91). Though the writer recalls it as much for its happy ending a s for its desperation. quis contra nos?' (If God be for us. quoting Romans 8:31. So we boiled my son. and a measure of fine flour was sold for a shekel. 7:1. 6 and 7. p.16 The author of the Vita sees the biblical dearth both as a genuine historical even t and as an analogu e for hi s ow n time . For an ass's head. which had on e day sold for eight y pieces o f gold.l. it is one o f the mor e gruesome episode s i n the Bible . was on th e morro w hel d unclea n b y e Samarian famine lends moral resonance to the contemporar y account . And I said to her o n the next day: Give thy son that we may eat him. Among the other auspicious signs are the apparent reconciliation of Edward II and Thomas of Lancaster at the parliament of 1318 and a Host miracle in which a dove snatches the sacramen t from th e chaplain of the interdicted Robert Bruce (Vita. sin and strange die t beyond even that of the Northumbrians . Antonia Gransden character Vita.78 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe (The dearth that had so long plagued us ceased. was now freely offered t o the buyer for sixpence. which the year before was sold for forty pence. complaining. useful a s a means o f reinforcing the readin g o f th e fourteenth-century famine that he has already offered throug h his other scriptural citations and his use of prophecy. 90. pp. 17 Vita. 28-29. II Kings 6:25. 91 and n. an d s o emphasize s th e connection s th e chronicler see s between God's grace and the health of the entire realm of England. As a model story of desperation. A measure of wheat.) 15 The stor y cited is that of the siege of Samaria in II Kings.

mo x ad remedium poenitentiae. Rolls Series. ve l mortalitatem .-P. ve l alia supernae vindictae flagella fidelibus innuunt.18 Although his prophecies ma y seem disingenuous t o modern readers. the y do not represent merel y compulsive or lapidary use of biblical language. the y make some mention of the high price of grain and of widespread death. per hae c Deum placaturi. 3. 1 and n. i. As Matthew Paris puts it: Prodigia aute m ve l portenta praeterit a qua e famem . phraseology . 1880). after the prologu e t o Robert o f Torigny (d. 19 18 . ed. u t s i quando similia evenerint.biblica l plot. They are his means of describing and explaining the recent past and putting it into context . peccatore s qui se iram Dei in aliquo incurriss e meminerint . col.) 19 By invoking the two famines as demonstrations of God's justic and mercy. 421 . H. That is .tha t constitute the anonymous author's basic narrative material.a n activity we can recognize as the writing of history. while that in its Gransden. but accounts of strange diet are uncommon. sinners who remember having incurre d th e wrat h o f God agains t the m i n somethin g ma y haste n quickly to the remed y o f penitence. in Sigeberti Gemblacensis monachi opera omnia. ideo memoriae pe r literas commendantur. The chronicle s writte n i n late r year s generally offe r les s dramatic accounts o f th e famin e of 1316 . However. as innate: his job i s not t o create a new connection bu t t o discern an d point out the on e tha t God has already made. MatthaeiParisiensis chronica majora. p. (Prodigies or past portents that announce t o the faithful hunger . Luard. Withou t exception. the writer of the Vita Edwardi Secundi is doing what had long been recognize d as the historian's job. ed. ii. the write r may see the relatio n o f the event s of the ancient and moder n famines .R. Translation mine . 1186). 1880) . Within a n understandin g o f history as a series of exemplary. and sensational details are not the only ones to drop out . morally comprehensible tales . 57 (London. so that when such events occur.Cannibalism as an Aspect o f Famine i n Tw o English Chronicles 7 9 izes the Vita Edwardi Secundi as 'not a chronicle in the stric t sense but a literary piece'. interest in causes of the crisi s dwindles. and prophetic techniqu e . b y which they may appease God. e past and present. Historical Writing in England (London. p. an d the role of Providence in them. o r mortal ity. references to bad weather and murrai n als o tend to decrease over time. ar e therefor e t o be commende d to the memory by letters. J. 1982) . or other scourges o f divine vengeance. . it is exactly those element s ofte n considere d 'literary' . vol. as do those to the government's attempts to control prices. festinent . Mign e (Paris . 16 0 of Patrologia latina.

22 The claim that the poor ate their children. 1866). 421-88. It is once again in the Bible. Translation mine . dove droppings. xxxvi. including this tale of strange diet: Tauperes enim pueros suos manducabant. The price of an ass's head is not the only one mentioned: 'Factaque est fames magna in Samaria et tamdiu obsessa est donee venundaretur caput asini octoginta argenteis et quarta pars cabi stercoris columbarum quinqu e argenteis' (an d there was a great famine in Samaria: and so long did the siege continue. Rolls Series. goes beyond sensationalism into surrealism. th e aspect s o f th e famin e tha t remaine d noteworthy to later historians were high prices. In general . iii. xxxv . murelegos. They were probably written around 1433. an d th e fourth par t o f a cab o f pigeon's dun g fo r five pieces of silver). 21 20 . in the same story of the siege of Samaria that inspired the author of the VitaEdwardi Secundi. iii. 23 IV Kings 6:25. canes.80 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe effects survives . cols 615-16). but it nevertheless covers in som e detai l mos t of the spectacula r elements of earlie r versions. till th e hea d o f an as s was sold fo r fourscor e pieces of silver. 113. Augustine allegorize s th e famine as the spiritua l hunger o f those who turn awa y from th e worship of God and th e droppings as the idols from which they vainly seek nourishment.. 3 6 (London. The account does not mention the rains that caused the dearth or the murrain that followed. stercus columbarum'. It continues. who believed that 'th e compiler had acces s to a considerable number of authorities. vol. though th e portions o n th e year s after 120 6 were largely compiled from olde r docu ments within the priory. Annales monasterii de Bermundesia. xxxviii. and i t is not t o be found in the event s of 1316 . scarcity of food and mas s hunger. high mortality.24 The Genev a Bible explains that See the Appendix for the sources on which these observations are based.21 The annals ' few sentences given to the famine of 1316 are. far removed fro m the fact. 24 Commentary on I V Kings 6 in the Glossa ordinaria (Patrologia latina. 'e t ita crebro moriebantur. 22 Ibid.20 The exceptio n t o this rule o f increasing moderatio n i s the annals of Bermondsey. pp. Luard.R. according to their editor.R. H. if based on earlier sources. and re-wrote the accounts they narrate in his own words'. 470. Luard. 23 Th e dove dropping s hav e lon g presente d a challeng e t o Bibl e readers . ut deesset morituris cura et mortuis sepultura' (an d thus they were dying so thick and fas t tha t there was not car e for th e dying or graves for the dead). An explanation i s called for. in Annales monastici. ed. but the Bermondsey book's last item. H. dogs and cats is lurid enough. then. p.

206-7). but a s the final consequence o f the sinfulness tha t separates them from Go d and brings disaster upon them .27 Once we have seen thi s biblical particular so wholly assimilated into recent history . as Abraham was ready to do. be thou food for me. 28 See. reprint (Madison . to the rebels an avenging fury. prediction s o r laments . for example. 27 Even Josephus claim that the starving citizens of Jerusale picke d apart 'old cow ' m dung' i n searc h o f undigested plan t matte r (feiuish War.26 The writer of the Bermondsey book. in a day when the droppings were understood t o have served as food. we may begin t o consider II Kings as a potential sourc e for othe r elements o f the Bermondse y account a s well. though i t is the onl y specific instance recounte d as historical fact. The writer need not have consciously chosen to exploit the biblical detail. since their ammonia content would make them not only unpalatable but poisonous . 'With th e Roman s slavery awaits us. 4) of a cannibal mother. as the autho r of th e Vita Edwardi Secundi does . 571) i s more credibl e tha n that for bird droppings. but famine is forestalling slavery. fo r i t ma y wel l hav e emerge d a s a Th e Geneva Bible.Cannibalism as an Aspect o f Famine in Tw o English Chronicles 8 1 the dun g wa s burnt i n lie u o f firewood. glosse s it a s a popular term for carob pods. Cannibalis m . 1985).alway s parents eatin g their childre n otherwise appear s i n curses . She tells her child . and Lamentations 4:10. Th e Tanakh (Philadelphia . Th e New Jerusalem Bible (Garden City . 1985) . 26 25 . Although the brief Bermondsey annal has not adopted precis e biblical language and makes no explicit reference to the Bible. should we live til l they come. Wisconsin. Leviticus 26:27-29. v . who acts as much in protest and witness as for survival. The stor y of the canniba l mothers of Samaria is by no means the onl y or even the most grisly cannibalism in th e Bible . has not only taken the words literally but transplanted and represented th e consumption o f the dun g a s a fourteenth-century event. we must suspect that th e Bible' s cannibalism has influenced the accoun t when we see what has unmistakably happened to the dove droppings. 25 Th e Ne w Jerusalem Bibl e dismisses the dov e droppings a s impossible and suggest s an alternative Hebrew ter m meaning 'wil d onions'. and to the world a tale such as alone is wanting to th e calamitie s of the Jews' (feiuish War. 1969). Josephus similarly offers i n some detail the story (repeated i n the subsequent versions listed in n.28 In these instances. and more cruel than both are the rebels. whil e translating th e phras e a s 'doves ' dung' . vi. specifically fo r the parent s who devour thei r ow n children. Come. Deuteronomy 28:53-57. The lates t English version of the Tanakh. invariably associated with famine and usually with the wrath of God. one s o outrageous that it can have no basis but the literary one. the beleaguered peopl e of Israel must sacrifice their children not out of dutiful obedienc e t o the Lord. New York.

3. may be entirely literary in origin. 30 I d o no t i n th e slightest . Arens says. p. Whatever the Bermondse y chronicler's intentions . Many of them recu r i n th e descriptio n o f this an d othe r famines because th e same sad things do recur in time of famine: prices do rise. 30 W. Riley. cannibals are always with us. 'Lik e the poor. pp. as th e Bermondse y boo k recent years in Africa have shown . F. In short. 1979) . 144-50 . T . 1869) . MS Cotton Cleopatra D. Th e Man-Eating Myth: Anthropology an d Anthropophagy (Oxford . such as reports of parental cannibalism. 13 1 (London . 29 .Johannis d e Trokelowe e t Henrici d e Blaneforde chronica et annales. in his critical study of anthropological belie f in cannibalism as a socially accepted phenomenon. pt 1 of Chronica monasterii S. He knows that the famine of 1316 was terrible. and therefore he knows what happened i n it. the stor y in II Kings informs the narrative not as a particular example but as a universal type of famine. and their literary nature may affect or even English accounts o f cannibalism i n the famin e of 1316 not discusse d i n this essay are thos e of the Lon g Continuation o f the Anglo-Norman prose Brut (publishe d an d better known in its later Middle English translation). EETS. The appearanc e o f Samaria n pigeo n dun g i n fourteenth-century England remind s u s t o exercis e cautio n whe n consultin g thi s o r an y annal for factual information. BL.the dead may truly be to o numerou s t o bury . The biblical story has assumed such authority that the monastic historian (whether the Bermondsey annalist or his source) knows through it what happens in terrible famines. thes e topics can also take on a literary existence of their own. The Brut: or The Chronicles of England. th e chronicle o f Joh de Trokelowe. fos 152v-153r. original series. pp. or at least he knows a way t communicate th e truth of its horror.D . which draws directly on John de Trokelowe. 209-1 0. he understands and represents the famine as a disaster of biblical proportions. i. a truth about famine tha t o does not depend o n the incidental specifics we think of as facts. Historia anglicana. 1906) . Brie. pt 3 of Chronica monasterii S. and Thomas Walsingham. Arens. Albani. however. which bears some similarit y to the Bermondsey account . 1. 2 8 (London. people do go hungry and . I n fact . Some of these topoi. an d Thomas Walsingham' s n Historia anglicana. Nevertheless . 166. wish t o impl y tha t al l the commo n themes o f narratives of famine are reall y or primarily literary. al l medieva l English report s o f cannibalis m know n to m e eithe r themselve s voice reservations abou t th e stor y or appea r t o be o f biblical descent : the y constitute no evidenc e of the actua l incidence of cannibalism. pp . Rolls Series. ed. H . for the last thing it means is that people really at e bir d droppings . 88-98.W. ed.82 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe fourteenth-century incident in another of the sources he used. but happily just beyond the possibility of actual observation'. muc h les s each other . 29 As W . Albani.

A t thi s remov e o f textual transmission . The stylized account i n the Bermondsey book call s attention t o itself precisely because i t defie s acceptance a t face value . The Samarian famin e is important and useful t o a Christian writer in the first place because o f its peculiar exegetical status as part of the Ol d Testament record : i t is both a particula r pas t historica l even t an d a n object of textual interpretation. Until th e biblica l norm o f description tha t so dominates the plot is recognized. The VitaEdwardi Secundi provides a concrete exampl e of a moral theory of history in practice. Although th e annal's depiction o f th e crisi s o f 131 6 partakes o f a general ide a o f famine tha t is founded in scripture. bu t th e famine as represented i n the Bermond sey book does not resembl e th e Samarian famine: it is indistinguishable from the Samarian famine . the biblical story gains a certain power.Cannibalism a s an Aspect o f Famine in Tw o English Chronicles 8 3 govern other medieval historica l narratives as they clearly do thi s one . both actual and metaphorical. It is either implicit . whereas th e interpretiv e mechanism by which to read th e Samarian and English famines is firmly in place in the VitaEdwardi Secundi. to predict ostensibly future one s an d t o mak e it s ethica l point s clear . with the burden of recognition an d interpretation on the reader. in the Bermondsey book it is not apparent. the author draws an analogy between Samaria and England. as it borrows biblical authorit y t o confirm past events.if it makes sense even then. the story makes no sense . Th e Bermondse y . both literal and allegorical . These two accounts o f the famine of 1316 extract thei r truths from II Kings in different ways. we are not in a position to judg whether the chronicler or his readers even knew that e the dove droppings came from the Bible. As an authoritative definitio n of famine. th e famin e may still provid e mora l commentary. or it may simply be a manifestation of a topos that has come loose fro m its original interpretive moorings . Their appearance i n the annal certainly constitutes evidenc e o f the Bible' s pervasive presence i n th e life of a monastic writer. the dramatic story of the English famine loses its particularity to become a n illustration of a general idea of famine grown out of scripture. In the annals of Bermondsey. but. We have moved from analogy to equivalence. I n its role as a universal type of famine. in this case the allusion no longer bears any explicit relation t o the mora l lesson s associated with it both in the Bible and in the VitaEdwardi Secundi. or it has dropped out altogether. In the Vita. they may also constitute evidence of the breakdown of a system of signification into dead metaphor. But in th e case of the Bermondsey book. the Samaria n famine may in a sense become to o figurative for its own good and compromise the privileged textual and historical statu s tha t gav e i t it s original allegorica l power .

In a les s drastic bu t stil l discernibl e way. the Bibl e does mor e tha n provid e a pattern fo r historical narrative: it possesses universal applicability and even the power to define historical truth. a universal e and universalizing one that reveals much more about the idea of famine in the fifteenth centur y than about the events of the famine of 1316. .84 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe chronicler certainly has a perspective on the events h describes. In both cases . the autho r o f th e Vita Edwardi Secundi seems t o hav e shrouded th e immediac y of his story for u s by tailoring it to flatter its historical and mora l shapeliness.

1858) . 1 (London . i. pp. 340-41. origina l series. 1906) . p. Bond. ed . Albani. Chronica monasterii d e Melsa. AdaeMurimuth continuatio chronicarum Robertus deAvesbury d e gestis mirabilibus regis Edwardi Tertii. 171-74. ed.J. 13 1 (London. W. ed. ed. 9. pp. 36 (London. p. pp. 186. Gesta Edwardi d e Carnarvon auctore canonico Bridlingtoniensi. i. Ranulph Higden. Ill. Hingeston. pp. F . S. pp.A . Chronicon de Lanercost. 1882) . in Annales monastici.M . E. 195 . Chronicon Henrici Knighton. Chroniques de London depuis Va n 44 Hen. ed . 278-79. 1866). 9 5 (London . 1201-1346. Annales monasterii de Bermundesia. ed. 1889). in Chronicles of the Reigns of Edward I and Edward II. ed.R. 209-10. 1957). Noel Denholm-Young (London. 233. Stevenso n (Edinburgh . p. Chronicon Galfridi le Baker de Swinbroke. ed. injohannis d e Trokelowe et Henrici de Blaneforde chronica et annales. pt 3 of Chronica monasterii S. Luard. Aungier (London . Rolls Series. Annales Paulini. 318 . F. p.W. H. John Capgrave. ed . ed.M. E. i. pp.D . Polychronicon. 1899). Roll s Series. in Chronicles of the Reigns of Edward I and Edward II. H. iii . 4 3 (London . Lumby. 1863) . 38-39. 76 (London. Haydon. 181 . John de Trokelowe. 24. H. 1889).Cannibalism as an Aspect o f Famine in Tw o English Chronicles 8 Appendix Published Medieval English Reports of the Famine of 1316 5 Annales Londonienses. EETS. viii. 306-9. 92 (London . ed. 47-50 . Rolls Series. Flares historiarum. 332-34 . 64-70. Roll s Series. . ChroniconabbatiedeParcoLude. 470. pp. ed. ii. 41 (London.R . E. Rolls Series. 88-98. 1839) . Stubbs. pp. Vita Edwardi Secundi. Thompson (Oxford . 1882). ii. in Chronicles of th e Reigns of Edward I and Edward II .T. 28 (London. pp . ed. Roll s Series. Rolls Series. Adam Murimuth. E. Henry Rnighton.J. ed. ed./o/ianrm de Trokelowe annales. 160-61 .R . ed. pp. Venables (Lincoln. 1890) . GJ. Luard . J. 1891). Rolls Series. Lumby. Rolls Series. 24-27. 9 (London . 231-41. Riley . The Brut: or The Chronicles o f England. 90. Ill jusqu'a Va n 17Edw. i. 1844) . p. and trans. Geoffrey le Baker. 93 (London. pp. 392. Rolls Series. Eulogium historiarum. 1867). iii. iii. pp. p . Thompson. 411-12.R. The Chronicle of England. Brie. 1869) . EC. 300 .

pt 1 of Chronica monasterii S. i. Albani. Albani. 247-49 . Ypodigma Neustriae. Historia anglicana. . –. pt 7 of Chronica monasterii S. 144-50 . pp. pp.86 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe Thomas Walsingham.

c.6 Driven by Drink ? Ale Consumption and the Agrarian Economy of the London Region. Ministry of Agriculture. 221-29. Unger. in th e middl e ages as today. in E. pp. 1985) . areas which have been the subject of detailed researches by such scholars as Rodney Hilton. eadem. J. 134 (1992). have led t o thei r widespread consumption across different cultures and historical periods. pp. Past and Present. after reviewing some general features of ale production and consumption. pp. This essay explores some economic implications of changes in human Judith Bennett and Richard Unger. Journalof European Economic History. It concludes by examining the relationship between this apparent increase and changes in the patterns of crop production and disposal during the fourteenth century. ed.. pp . allied to their potentially pleasurable effect s an d associatio n with socia l intercourse. Tai n e t cervois e dan s le s ville s anglaise s a u moye n age' . the Low Countries and England in the Late Middle Ages'. 'Women and Me n in the Brewers ' Gild of London . 2 e.3 This factor. 82-83. 1420'. Michigan. Alcoholic drink s constitute a ready and rapidl y absorbed sourc e of energy for human beings. Th e Salt o f Common Life: Essays i n Honor ofj.H . 281-314 . 1985). 1995). i n L'approvisionnement de s villes de VEurope occidental au moyen age et aux temps modernes. as revealed by recent researc into demesne h agriculture within the London region . Galloway diet. AmbroseRaftis (Kalamazoo. 3 Manual of Nutrition. c . 181-232. broadly divided into areas which produced their principal alcoholic drinks from the grape and those which I am grateful to Derek Keene and Margaret Murphy for their helpful comments o n an earlie r version of this essay. Fisheries and Food reference book 342 (London. R. taking as an exampl e the consumptio n of ale in London an d it s region during the fourteenth century. the essay moves on to assess the evidence for an increase in per caputale consumption after the Black Death. 16-1 8 Septembre 198 3 (Auch . R. Hilton .M. Cinquiemesjournees Internationales d'histoire. 19-41 .1 It touches only briefly upon th e brewing industry in it s social and technica l aspects. 1 . pp. 2 1 (1992). 1300-1400 James A. Europe.2 Instead.B . DeWindt. 'Conviviality and Charity in Medieval and Early-Modern England'. Technical Changes in the Brewing Industry in Germany.g. Bennett.

9. as indicated by Domesday Book and by later manorial accounts and extents. 7 It seems tha t onl y large-scale and sustained investment in skilled labour and plants could ensure reasonably consistent productio n o f drinkable wine . Galloway and M . the mass-consumption alcoholic drink of England was undoubtedly ale. the northernmost limit for viticulture in Europe. principally from barle y and th e mixtur e o f barley and oat s known as dredge. but it is evident that for most of recorded history southern England has lain at.88 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe brewed ale. D . 34-35.althoug h primaril y a fodder crop for Ale. esp. Historical Geography Research Series. as at the roya l vineyard adjoining Windso r Castle. see B. but. Medieval Gardens (London . 8 R. 4. the Thames e valley and parts of south-western England. 7 J. unlike beer.A. and hence it remained relatively expensiv and largely restricted e to the better-of f sections of society. 9 Nevertheless. 1 6 (1991). ii. bu t by the lack of sufficient summer warmth and sunshine to ripen grapes. The Middle Ages (London. but was not at that period a significant domestic manufacture. mostly whit wines in Kent and Sussex. Beer was known in fourteenthcentury England . using modern grape varietals and techniques. 54. The History of the King's Works. 6 Although quite common. or close to. Galloway. Campbell.10 Oat s o n thei r ow n .M. Taylor. Mead was probabl drunk by the peasantry of parts of western England. H. These were also the principal areas where wine-making took place in the middle ages. pp.A. 24-27. here p. Thus. 10 For the use of the various grains in the London region . 24. 1300.M. 8 Mos t o f th e win e drun k i n Englan d was imported. Harvey. c. 3-14. The boundary between the two zones has not always been sharp. 6 J. Wine and th e Vine: An Historical Geography o f Viticulture and th e Wine Trade (London an d New York. Keen e an d M . 30 (1993). 4 . y while cider was quite widely produced an d drunk. 'Feeding the City : Medieval London an d it s Agrarian Hinterland'. used in cooking) and vinegar. 5 T. medieval English wine-making seems to have been generall y small-scale and unreliabl e a s to quality . pp. Murphy. the earl of Lincoln's garden in the London suburb o f Holborn produce d onl y verjuice fro m it s vines in 1295-96 . 9 P. 1963) p . pp. A Medieval Capital an d it s Grain Supply: Agrarian Production and Distribution in the London Region.J. London Journal. Unwin. Murphy. Brown. 1983) .S. 881 n. J. and later beer. a limit set not b y the coldness of winters. p. production o f wine alternating with that of verjuice (th e juice of unripe grapes. Clark.A . produce palatable . but bot h verjuice and wine in 1304-05. Colvin and A. 1981). brewed from a variety of malted grains . i the n absence of large-scale domestic wine production. 1991).5 Today commercial vineyards. 4 from grain. is produced without the use of hops. p. in the London regio n of the fourteenth century. The English Alehouse: A Social History (London . 42-43.

Britnell. pp .13 The brewers were very often women and.were sometimes used to produce a lower-grade ale. Medieval Towns (London . 120 24. whil e wheat an d ry e wer e grow n principally for baking into bread. 1994) . whose existence is documented i n series of surviving court rolls from rural manors and towns alike . 12 Bennett. 1987) . 1300-1525 (Cambridge. Growth and Decline in Colchester. Broadly. p . 17 Essex Record Office . chapte r 2 of P. 'Convivialit y and Charity'. in the form of malting ovens. Women i n the Medieval English Countryside (Oxford .15 Large numbers of townsmen and women were involved in the manufactur e and retail ing of ale. in th e countryside . A Medieval Capital. 17 Larger town s may have been hom e t o larger-scale brewing operations. 1996) .. Brewer s were regularl y fined . 14 Brewers have left distinctive archeological evidence of their activities. Whea t was also malted o n occasion . burnt grain.M. Early Although barle y was widely used to make bread in some othe r parts o f England. 11 . Th e History o f Maidstone (Stroud . Schofiel d an d A . and for consumption a t the 'ales' held for various social and charitabl e purposes. buying to resell. 1986) . 16 Eac h cour t a t th e Esse x market tow n of (Saffron ) Walden c . 76 . 10 6 brewers were fined at one o f the regula r cour t sessions held a t Maidstone in Kent. 13 R. 15 J. was becoming les s common within the region . the brewing industry drew upon the region's production o f barle y an d dredge . pp. probably as a form of licensing. nominall y for breache s o f regulations but. 26. but i n additio n an average of thirty people were fined for 'regrating' ale . Clark and L . particularly in towns. p.Driven by Drink ? 8 9 working animals . this doe s no t see m t o hav e bee n th e cas e i n Londo n an d it s immediate hinterland . for sale to others. 31 . commercial brewing seems to have been most characteristic of the middle years of women's married lives. deposits of germinated. occasionally. D/DB y Ml-4. Bennett. althoug h her e to o there were many small producers.H. 89. 12 Every community of any size had its brewers.11 By the fourteenth century ale production was an almost omnipresent industry i n England . Al e was brewed fo r consumptio n withi n th e household. although stil l followed even in some London establish ments. 16 R. a practice which. Holt. that is. in reality. Campbell e t al. 14 J. 119 . p. hearths and furnaces and. Vince. in order t o produce a high-grade ale . the majority operating on a small scale. then. Th e Medieva l Marke t Town'. but ther e is no evidence that rye was used as a brewing grain in south-eastern England at this period. 1400 saw some twenty-fiv e brewer s amerced. In 1386 . implying that as many as one-third of the town' s households may have been involved in the production o f ale a t tha t time. Murfin.

90 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe fourteenth-century Colchester. 21 W. Rolls Series (London . English Alehouse. 19 18 . 99-111. though in part explicable by administrative changes. 1 4 (1989).were displayed to advertise a fresh brew. 22 This development. th e ratio more closel y resembled tha t prevailing at Colchester. A chronicle source. se e D. p.000 in 1330. which may have been more characteristi c o f town than of countryside. However . 23 Suc h premise s were highly visible. 'Brewing and th e Peasan t Economy : Some Manor s in Lat e Medieval Devon'. 1 . from a n earl y date. regularly ha d ove r on e hundre d brewer s amerce d a t it s thrice-yearly lawhundred courts.21 Although we cannot tell how accurate these apparently precise figures were.H. Hilton.20 If. it might have supported the activities of somewhere between 800 and 100 0 brewers at that date. There was some tendency for the scale of brewing operation s t o increase durin g th e late r middl e ages . Victoria County History o f Oxfordshire. Rutledge. with perhaps 300 0 to 4000 inhabitants. 19 Strictly comparable figure s ar e not available for London. Keene. if the ratio between population and number of brewers was similar to that at Norwich.pole s with brush-leaves or some other sig n at the end . on the basis that London ma y have had a populatio n of some 80. 133-44 . Postles. 22 D. p. report s tha t 133 4 brewer s responde d t o a summons to appear a t the Guildhal l in 1309 . p. pp. Clearly. 18 In th e muc h large r tow n of Norwich. Growth and Decline. then. Chronicles of the Reigns of Edward I and Edward II. the Londo n brewers may have numbered mor e tha n 2500 . Tain et cervoise'. is probably also to be associated with an increase in permanent or semi-permanent alehouses. Rural History. Keene. and a well-known R. pp. 31. 1400. th e Annales Londonienses. 'Medieval London and its Region'. and of large tha n o f smal l towns . 228. on the other hand.000 in 1300. 267 . 1882) . Annales Londonienses and Annales Paulini. it is dangerous t o assume any fixed relation between popula tion an d numbe r o f brewers. Survey o f Medieval Winchester (Oxford. City of Oxford. Urban History Yearbook 1988. 47. and by the growt h of beer-brewing after c. 23 D. London Journal. iv . 1985). 267-69 . p. Stubbs. pp.250 to 300 brewers were amerced each yea r in the pre-Black Death period. which may have had a population of 25. Britnell. p. together wit h 35 4 taverners. 269 . the order of magnitude they denote seems entirely plausible. E. a tren d which has been documente d i n both rura l an d urban contexts. pp. 'Immigratio n an d Populatio n Growt h in Early-Fourteenth Century Norwich: Evidence from the Tithing Roll'.. ed. 15-30. 20 For London's population. numbers which would not have included thos e living in the inhabite d areas beyond the city'sjurisdiction. 3 (1992) . Clark. 'ale-stakes' .

1907) . 62-67 . Se e below.. A History o f Brewing (London. 24 The ubiquit y o f brewing is in par t a reflection o f the difficultie s o f preserving ale. fallin g fla t o n hi s fac e a t th e 24 R. or obtained from a close at hand town or village.26 As well as reflecting technical limitations on th e scal e of production an d marketing . for example. Household account s show that a quarter of malted grain normally produced somewher e between fifty and one hundred gallons of ale .T. p.S. 28 Intoxication i s shown in literary references to follow levels of consumption o f al e which . Sharpe.Driven by Drink ? 9 1 London ordinance prohibite d thes e stakes from being more than seven feet long. . ' A Tally of Ale'. although not unknown. variou s dates) amon g provisions sent to Calais: see. The requirement that ale should be drunk while fresh also influenced the pattern of brewing in aristocratic households. where ther e were never more than six days between brewings in the year 1412-13: E. as a result. 27 See for example G. Journal of the Royal Statistical Society. and 1392-26. pp. however. There is no truth in the statement. p. 1938). Different grades and strengths of ale were brewed. 28-29. with mos t brewings in th e rang e o f fifty to seventy-five . in Piers Plowman. the hug e numbe r o f brewers in fourteenth-century Englan d undoubtedl y point s t o th e widesprea d consumption o f al e acros s th e socia l spectrum . 28 H. in that the bulk of the natural sugars in the malt were converted into alcohol. Chapter 9. pp. ar e no t beyon d moder n north European comprehension . this would imply alcohol-by-volume contents at least comparable to modern beers. Price. Letter-Book H (London . The exten t of the marke t was consequently quite restricte d for most brewers and. 29-30 . an d finally passing out . which quite rapidly 'went off. 1389-92. Corran.M. 25 Barrels of ale are frequentl y listed i n th e Calendar o f Close Rolls (London . serie s A. stumblin g about like a bird-catcher o r a minstrel's dog . Thus. 26 This is well illustrated b y the househol d o f Dame Alice d e Bryene .. p. Cartin g or shippin g ale over long distances was thus problematic.R. aimed at different tastes and pockets. ibid. sometimes encountered i n olde r studies . frequent small brewings had advantages over the production o f large batches. Calendar of Letter-Books Preserved among the Archives of the Corporation o f London a t the Guildhall. from peasantr y to aristocracy. although high . Street Life i n Medieval England (Oxford. 1975) . i f th e brewing were effective.M. that medieva l ale was universally wea k 27 and watery.25 Most ale was drunk where it was made. 12 . pp. ed. 98. Salusburyjones. 143 . Glutton consumes 'a gallon and a gill' in a London alehouse before finding that he canno t walk or stand without his staff. 12 3 (I960) .

coul d b e expected t o have had a significant effec t upon thos e rural areas which supplied th e W.B. Miller. while converting a given quantity of raw grain into bread entails a calorific loss of the order of 15 per cent . Rogers. 29 . E. legal tongues'. 50. 29 Again. brewing is very greedy of grain and is. one with major implications fo r the agricultura l economy. 33 I n other words.E. 31 Food consumption . A Medieval Capital. hard evidenc e relating to ale consumption.32 The divergence between prices an d wage s is particularly marke d fro m th e 1370 s onwards. 32 The dat a o n which Figur e 1 is based ar e draw n fro m D. 54-168. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. Langland. is scarce. a difference only partially offset b y the us e o f the by-product s of brewing as animal fodder. a gallon of ale was sufficient t o 'bind legal senses. a s population fel l under the impac t o f plague an d rea l living standards rose ? Commo n sens e suggest s tha t the y did.30 Such references suggest that the alcoholic content of ale sold in a fourteenth-century London alehouse may have been broadly comparable to that of a medium-strength moder n beer. a s wages ros e markedly after 1349 while the price s of the grain an d mal t from which ale was made moved more cyclically (Fig. A History o f Agriculture and Prices in England. Rickert. according to a rhyme found endorsed on a Court of Common Pleas roll for 1371 and translate d by Edith Rickert. 1990) . 30 E. 31 Did the average quantities of ale drunk increase during the fourteenth century. 471 . (Oxford. p.92 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe alehouse door. although spee d an d degree of intoxication are influenced by many other factors.T. Will's Vision of Piers Ploughman. p. trans. smaller quantities being associated with varying degrees o f euphoria an d loquaciousness. iii. 1866) . four to five times greater. Patterns of consumption o f bread and ale . ii. 1983) . a s a longer-term slum p in grai n price s se t in. pp. 'Price s and Wages' in E.. can thus have a major impact upon both the overall size and the structure of the market for grain. Any changes i n th e leve l of ale consumptio n i n fourteenth-centur y London -which formed by far the largest and most concentrated centr e of demand fo r foodstuffs i n medieval Englan d . ed. 34. Brewing is much mor e wastefu l o f the energ y value of grain than is baking. The issu e is. acquire d toleranc e and genetic factors can all play a role: see D. and an y changes in thei r relativ e importance i n human diet . in pure energy terms.T. Th e Pharmacology o f Alcohol (New York and Oxford . 1948) . Chaucer's England (Oxford. p. 33 Campbell et al. 1348-1500 (Cambridge. particularly of a quantitative kind. Goldstein. 1991). Nevertheless . 444 . Donaldson (Ne w York an d London. an inefficient use of grain resources . however. pp. an d J.L . I). Farmer . 239 .. i n brewing th e loss is around 7 0 per cent.

35. here pp. an d towards barley and dredge. if it is postulated tha t Londoners obtained th e sam e total quantity of energy per caputfrom grai n in 1400 as in 1300. 35 34 . An absolute or relative increase in brewing would also have had implication s for the city' s fue l supply. Keene and M. Murphy. the principal brewing grains. imply a very marked shif t i n th e structur e o f tha t requirement.A. that change would by itself have substantially offset th e effec t of the steep decline in the city's population upon its total grain requirement. wheat and rye. 35 Based upon the calculations in Campbell. e t al. Economic History Review.34 It would. 1300-1410 (source : see note 32) . Galloway. however. It seems likely that London's population virtually halved between th e beginnin g an d en d o f the fourteent h century . A Medieval Capital. 'Fuelling the City: Production an d Distribution o f Firewood an d Fue l in London's Region . 469-70. 49 (1996). 447-72. away from th e bread grains. However .00 0 or mor e t o 40-50. p. D. pp..Driven by Drink ? 93 Movement of wages and prices Ten-year means Figure 1 : Movement of barley and mal t prices compared to carpenters' wages. a crucial constraint upon pre-industria l urban growth. 1290-1400' . J. city with grain. declinin g from perhap s 80. but that their average ale consumption increased between the tw o dates from on e pint to three pint s per day.00 0 people .

sometimes it is clear that they were not. 38 This trend appear s See for exampl e C. Dyer. as well as relative. p.. reachin g one t o two gallons eac h pe r da y in some religious houses. Available statistics for a variety of households point t o a generally highe r leve l of expenditure o n ale relative t o bread i n th e fifteent h centur y than i n th e pre-Blac k Death period. p. Woolgar. however. there seem s to be a tendency for a shift in relative quantities to take place. 38 Campbell et al. 19177-8. or t o chart relative expenditure on bread vis-a-vis brewing grains. and hence to deduce broad changes in consumption patterns. y they are ofte n ver y high.5 more whea t was consumed tha n barle y and dredge . Where daily allowances of ale are recorded. It is. 1989). ed. which might serve t o validate such assumptions. accounts fo r aristocratic and monasti c households she d som e light o n the overal l quantities of bread an d al e consumed. however. i s scarce.37 Any shift away from bread toward s ale within aristocratic household budget s seems more likely to reflect a change in the consumption pattern s o f househol d officer s an d servant s tha n o f th e famil y members themselves . and that servants consumed a part of the allowance. 36 . however. durin g th e fourteent h century . I t is.M. There is. Standards o f Living in the Later Middle Ages (Cambridge.36 In absolute . 204. but i t is difficult t o be sure that these quantities were intended t o slake the thirs t of just one individual . Westminster Abbey Muniments (WAM). but b y the 1370 s the situation had bee n reversed. 37 C. usuall elusive. 1300. an d in the balance of cereal-derived calorie s which came fro m al e vis-a-vi s bread . Household Accounts from Medieval England (Oxford . Per capita consumption is. however.. At Westminster Abbey in 1304. thus John de Veere's household spen t som e £36 on mal t in th e year 1431-32 . wher e allowance s (i f not actua l consumption) o f ale were already very high b y c. 1993) . Even i n ecclesiastica l households. Thus . no . or in a year. terms more was often spen t on ale and brewing grains tha n o n bread and wheat. A Medieval Capital. compared t o £27 on wheat. It will thus never be possible to say with confidence how much ale the average medieval Londoner drank i n a day. 56.94 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe Unfortunately. direc t evidenc e o f consumptio n levels . often ambiguous an d usually relates to restricted and probabl y atypical sections of society. table 3. possibl e to dra w upon evidenc e relatin g t o som e o f thos e better-documente d groups in order to assess whether there was a general movement in levels of ale consumption. 20. some uncertainty over the precise uses to which large quantities of oats received at the earlier date were put. sometimes possible t o examine relativ e quantities of bread an d al e consumed acros s households a s a whole.

Bread showed a corresponding decline. 'Change s in Diet in the Late Middle Ages: The Case of Harvest Workers'. Dyer. 150-68 . 1994).39 Monastic drinkin g ma y have peake d aroun d tha t time . in censuring the brewers for taking water from a conduit in the city . 42 The urban poo r were also probably drinking less water and more ale by 1400. ed. . or only rarely. In 134 5 a London ordinanc e had described water as the drink of the poor. ed. Horrox. 40 39 . 1994). Much of this drinking probably took place outside th e home. Everyday Life i n Medieval England (London . 225 .40 Evidence from quite different sections of society also points to increased consumption o f ale . while the bakehouse used 555 quarters o f flour. 42 Mark Bailey. 41 C. . rose from aroun d 10-1 5 pe r cent of the total before 1300 to over 30 per cent after 1400. taken in the form of wine as well as ale.Driven by Drink ? 9 5 to hav e continue d throug h th e late r middl e ages . compared t o perhaps 5 per cent in average diets today. A London ordinanc e of 1381-82 required brewer s a s well a s bakers t o sel l thei r product s b y farthing measures 'in order to assist the poor . 43 H. was coming to be regarded as a staple food. like bread. Memorials o f London and London Life (London . there are indications that ale. the mayor and aldermen deemWAM 18941. in idem..43 A generation later. Christophe r Dyer' s study of th e foo d an d drin k allowances given to harvest workers demonstrates a marked increase in both absolut e an d relative quantities of ale between the thirteenth an d early fifteent h centuries. 'Rural Society'. p. Fifteenth-Century Attitudes: Perceptions of Society i n Late Medieval England (Cambridge . 1993). fro m nearly 50 per cen t o f the tota l valu e to under 2 0 per cent . Riley .T. While the brewers were said to be depriving 'the rich and middling sort' of water for preparing food. 41 At Sedgeworth in Norfol k ale . pp. probably the produc t o f 555 quarters of wheat.. and tha t the proportio n of the population to o poor to drink it at all. pp. 57-58. measured i n terms of the value of foodstuffs consumed . 1868) . a s in 1526-2 7 th e abbey's brewhouse used 1209 quarters of malt. It seems probable tha t an increase in ale consumption too k place across rural society as a whole. in R. fifteenth-century preachers and moralists frequently note and deprecate th e tendency of the English peasantry to congregate in alehouses. may have contributed a s much as 19 per cent to the energ y value of the daily diet of monks at Westminster Abbey c. i t ha s been estimated that alcohol. they were robbing 'the poor [of ] their drink' . Living and Dying in England.1500. 1100-1540: The Monastic Experience (Oxford . pp. 77-100 . wa significantly s smaller in 1400 than in 1300. after the impact of plague had wrought major change s in society. Harvey. B.

whic h ran fro m 198 8 t o 199 4 a t th e Centr e fo r Metropolitan History . pett y traders.96 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe ing [ale ] equall y necessary t o th e poo r a s in th e cas e o f bread'. 1990) . Piers Plowman. p. Thus barley. that this was intended as an entirely plausible clientele for a London alehouse . i n col laboration with the Queen' s University. Institut e o f Historica l Research . 45 44 . in Norman London. p. p. especially barley. counted the 'immoderate drinking of fools' among the plagues afflicting th e city . musicians . 47 The 'Feedin g the City ' project . male and female . Logan (Ne w York. 2). which had occupied 1 3 per cen t o f th e tota l are a sow n wit h grain o n manoria l Calendar of Letter-Books. Funded i n its successive stage s by the Leverhulme Trus t an d th e Economi c an d Socia l Researc h Counci l (awar d number R000233157). expanded markedl y (Fig . as revealed by a systematic study based upon th e evidenc e of manorial accounts.46 There seem s little reason t o doubt.and lower-clas s London society . 44 Henceforth n o brewer was to refuse t o sell a farthing's worth of best ale on demand. ed. among the m craftsmen . 183 . I a m gratefu l to th e director s o f th e firs t stag e o f th e research. Fitz Stephen. 47 By the last quarter o f the fourteenth centur y the tota l amoun t o f land devoted to arable farming in southern England was probably somewha t smaller than it had bee n i n 1300 . of course. in the twelfth century. a watchman and s o on. 55. o r to refuse to give change for a halfpenny. and to Margaret Murphy with whom I and they co-directed the second stage. introduction by F. Derek Keene and Bruce Campbell.bu t in the later fourteenth century it was probably an enjoyment open to more o f the population tha n eve r before. the project compiled computer databases from manorial demesne accounts for 20 4 manors in the London regio n i n the period 1288-131 5 and 14 1 manors in the period 1375-1400. aliens . W. where cultivation of the brewing grains. were changes within the arable sector. Aspects of the project's methodology are discussed in the essay by Margaret Murph y in thi s volume. Muc h more striking . Belfast. however . ' A Description o f London'. Sharpe . a parson. the Tyburn hangman.D. distributio n an d consumptio n i n the London regio n durin g th e fourteenth centur y form the subject of an extended paper currentl y in draft. Statistics on crop production and disposal quote d here derive from those databases. Changes in grain production . a parish clerk. whatever Langland's wider allegorical purpose. for permission to use 'Feeding the City' data. H. 45 The alehous e i n which Glutton passe d ou t i s depicted a s filled b y representatives of a broa d swathe of middling. 46 Langland. 49. University of London . These change s i n drinkin g habit s wer e beginning t o hav e a majo r impact upon th e agricultural economy of London's region. long been an important feature of metropolitan life -Fitz Stephen. a Cheapsid e scavenger. Drinking alcoholic beverages had. as the area under pastur e expande d and livestoc k numbers increased .

In the years around 130 0 wheat had accounted for 43 per cent of all the grain sold by manorial demesne s in the London region .49 Over the same period th e principa l brewing grains. although the y continued t o form a small component o f the liveries given to manorial servants. 48 . 3). Northamptonshire . 1290-1315 and 1375-1400 (source: see notes 47 and 48). Hertfordshire. in bot h raw and malted state. accounted fo r 23 per cen t in the period 1375-1400. but by the last quarter of the fourteenth century this had declined to 28 per cent. Middlesex.Driven by Drink ? 97 1290-1315 1375-1400 % of total grain acreage Figure 2 : Percentage o f sown grai n acreag e occupied b y individual crop s o n demesnes in the London region. Trade in th e cheape r brea d grains base d o n ry e had shrun k awa y almost t o nothing between th e tw o periods. Buckinghamshire. Essex. 48 While wheat retained it s preeminent position . barley and dredge . Even mor e tellin g are statistic s relating t o th e relativ e quantities of the different grain s which entered into commercial exchange (Fig .principall y rye and its admixtures known as maslin and mancorn . an d i s shown o n Figur e 4 in Margaret Murphy's essa y in this volume (p . below) . the grains used for making cheaper and coarser bread .shran k from 1 0 pe r cent to less than 5 per cent of the grain acreage . Oxfordshir e an d Surrey . Kent. 123 . 49 Wheat becam e increasingl y importan t i n these liveries durin g the cours e o f the fourteenth century . Berkshire . expanded from 2 9 per cen t to 49 per cent of the The 'Londo n region ' for which figures are quoted comprise s the historic (pre 1974) counties of Bedfordshire. 1300. demesnes in th e Londo n region c .

98 Food

an d Eating in Medieval Europe

1290-1315 1375-140


% of total grain sold
Figure 3 : Percentage o f al l demesne grai n sol d (b y volume) represente d by individual crops in the London region, 1290-1315 and 1375-1400 (source: see notes 47 and 48). total amount of grain sold. Thus, by the end o f the fourteenth century, around one-hal f o f all the demesn e grai n which was marketed in th e London regio n wa s probably destined t o be turned int o ale. These changes form part of a complex transformation in the economic geography of the London region, and of the economic an social structur d e of th e cit y itself. I n 130 0 productio n o f grain i n London' s hinterlan d had been characterized b y patterns of specialization intelligible in terms of established geographical models, whereby relativ bul and transporte k ability exert key influences upon th e decisio n to grow one cro p rather than another. 50 Change in the structure o f metropolitan an d regiona l demand fo r grai n promote d reorganizatio n o f this grain productio n hinterland after th e Black Death. The majo r expansion in cultivation of the brewing grains took place not in the immediate vicinity of London, but furthe r afield. 51 Norther n an d easter n Kent , which had bee n a n important barley-producing area £.1300 , continued to be so in the later fourteenth century. Th most marked expansion came to the north and e west of London, in parts of the counties of Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire,
Campbell e t al., A Medieval Capital, pp. 5-7, 111-13 . See the map s forming figures 1 and 2 in J.A. Galloway , 'London's Grain Supply : Changes in Production, Distribution and Consumption during the Fourteenth Century' , Franco-British Studies, 20 (Autumn 1995), pp. 23-34 .
51 50

Driven by Drink ? 9


Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire . In these parts of the region barley and dredge seem to have been replacing wheat as the main commercial crop, perhaps because when malted they could economically withstand transportation ove r greater distances tha n could wheat. Here the brewing grains frequently came to occupy 50 per cen t or more of the acreage under grai n b y the late r fourteent h century . This zon e probably extended int o the counties of Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire, 52 which wer e name d togethe r wit h Hertfordshire , Bedfordshir e an d Northamptonshire in a parliamentary ordinance, proclaimed in the city in 1394 , a s sources o f mal t which should b e carrie d t o Londo n an d there sold for the benefit of the royal household, nobl e households an d 'the entire population'. 53 Associated with this developing specialization, overland dealers an d carriers of grain becom e increasingl y prominent in both Londo n an d national record s i n th e late r fourteent h an d earl y fifteenth centuries . These dealers, often described a s 'maltmen', appear particularly prominent in a range of small towns in north Middlesex and southern Hertfordshire, among th e mos t importan t o f which were Barnet , Enfiel d an d Watford.54 The maltmen appear to have acted as middlemen in the overland trade, usin g thes e town s as bases for thei r operation s an d cartin g t o London th e supplie s needed b y the city' s brewers; muc h o f the mal t they handle d seem s likel y t o hav e originate d furthe r north , i n th e specialised barley-producing zone. Later evidence points to the regularity with which maltmen from suc h towns visited the capital ; a maltman from Aldenham , nea r Watfor d i n sout h Hertfordshire , charge d i n Chancery with abducting a female apprentice in the 1470s , was said to have visited London 'weekel y by cause of his occupacion'.55 In contrast to the increasing visibility of malt dealers and carriers, large-scale Londonbased cornmongers , specializin g in th e grai n trad e an d handlin g principally wheat, become scarce r in th e records , and appea r t o have
Not covered in the 'Feeding the City' databases . Calendar of Letter-Books, H, ed. Sharpe , p . 411. 54 See for example Calendar o f Letter Books, H, ed. Sharpe , pp. 17 , 354; A.H. Thomas, ed., Calendar of the Plea and Memoranda Rolls Preserved among the Archives of the Corporation of th e City o f London a t Guildhall, 1364-81 (Cambridge , 1929) , pp. 191-92 . Other refer ences ar e contained in database s compile d fro m records o f debt litigation i n nationa l and local courts by the project 'Marke t Networks in the London Region : The Trade in Agrarian Produc e e.1400' , funded by the Leverhulme Trust an d based at the Centre for Metropolitan History . The work of this project includes a more detailed reconstructio n of the trad e i n malt, c.1400. 55 Victoria History o f the County o f Hertford, i v (London, 1908) , p. 411 .
53 52

100 Food

an d Eating in Medieval Europe

declined i n influenc e as a group. 56 Earl y fourteenth-century London had bee n uniqu e amon g Englis h town s in havin g an organize d corn mongers' guild. After 1350 the guild seems to have declined in numbers and influence , however, and soo n afte r 140 0 reference s t o i t cease . Although man y factors undoubtedly lay behind thi s development, th e relative declin e i n th e consumptio n o f the brea d grains , th e trad e i n which had c. 1300 been heavily concentrated alon g the axis of the River Thames between Henle y in Oxfordshire an d Faversham in Kent, seems likely to have been among the most significant. A reduction in the overall size of the market , allied t o falling prices, ma y have reduced the scop e for the assured profits on which large-scale, specialized dealers depended.57 Shifts in grain consumption pattern s thus appear to have been promoting far-reaching changes in London-centred distributiv e systems, as well as in the agricultural sector. The post-Black Death changes were complex, as ne w regiona l specialization s emerged an d existin g one s becam e strengthened or weakened in response to changes in demand. Som e of the development s of the period , suc h a s the rise to prominence o f the overland trade in malt, appear to have laid the foundations for networks of supply which persisted into the sixteenth and seventeenth centurie s and beyond. The grain sector was no the only one to undergo significant t change, drive n by improving living standards an d shiftin g patterns of consumption. Parallel shifts were taking place with regard to the production and consumption of other commodities , as meat came to be more widely eaten,58 and standards of domestic comfort improved. However, perhaps no change was more influential than the shift from bread t o ale in restructurin g th e hinterlan d o f one o f medieval Europe's greates t cities.

Campbell et al., A Medieval Capital, pp . 81-82. Members of other London companies occur in the records as occasional dealers in grain (ibid., pp. 84-87). Fishmongers were prominent amongst thos e acquiring licences to ship bulk consignments of wheat: examples can be found in the Calendar of Close Rolls and Calendar of Patent Rolls (London, various dates); many o f these instances relate t o years of high grain prices. 58 Dyer, 'Changes in Diet', pp. 86, 89.


Making Sense of Medieval Culinary Records: Much Done, But Much More to Do
Constance B. Hieatt
The las t decade has seen a remarkable growt h of interest in the subject of medieval culinary records and , naturally enough, ther e ha s been a n enormous numbe r o f valuable publications arisin g fro m this interest ; the extremely limited selection listed in the Appendix ranges from suc h well-informed an d seriou s books abou t th e foo d o f the perio d a s P.W. Hammond's Food and Feast in Medieval England; through various editions, t o accumulation s o f relevant historical records, suc h a s those i n C.M. Woolgar's two volumes of Household Accounts from Medieval England; and even a new basic research tool, the Repertoire des manuscrits medievaux contenant des recettes culinaires, which contains bibliographical details o n all such manuscript s known - befor e 1992 , the year of publication - to those o f us who compiled it. It i s about tim e thi s kin d o f information becam e readil y available. Right up t o the perio d i n the 1980 s when a great dea l of new material began t o become available , much o f what was written about medieva l food wa s just plai n wrong , whethe r becaus e th e evidenc e wa s misinterpreted o r because it was still insufficient in quantity (or, in some cases, quality) . Any number o f painful instance s can b e foun d i n William Edward Mead's The English Medieval Feast,1 which was for many years the mos t valuabl e sourc e o f information abou t th e foo d o f medieval English (an d French ) aristocrats . Bu t saying that i t was the mos t valuable i s tantamount t o callin g it th e bes t o f a bad lot : it is riddled with such misconception s a s that 'practicall y ever y dish wa s smothered i n spices' an d thu s tha t 'eve n th e best [medieva l recipes] contai n on e o r more ingredients repulsive to modern tastes o r . .. combined in a fashion that would now make them nauseating in the extreme' (pp . 57 and 55). It also states as fact such myth s as that medieval cooks used spice s to disguise the flavour of spoiled meat (p. 77), a myth which is, unfortunately, still current amon g th e general public ; and tha t vegetables were hardly
W.E. Mead, Th e English Medieval Feast (London , 1931 ; reprinte d Londo n an d Ne w York, 1967).

however. gingerbread. a s when h e say s tha t 'suc h beverage s a s brandy. nor d o an y of those word s appear i n th e cookery books Mea d knew . Mead. Citin g the recipe with that title in MS Harleian 279 . On e shudder s t o thin k o f the disastrou s effects o f pouring ho t water over a pastry castle. Sometimes Mead's misinformation is simply a matter of misinterpreting scant y evidence. cit e any of these term s in sources prio r to th e seventeent h century . I presume we owe that on e largely to Charles Laugh ton's memorable film performance a s Henry VIII. in the same passage. when in fact the Forme ofCury give s a recipe entitled.g. 22 . The OED does not.. . However. . This i s pasta cu t i n smallis h pieces . 'Gingerbread sounds familiar.e . ' macrows . a source which Mead drew on extensively. whisky. indeed. I n what was probably the first book i n English to try to adapt medieval recipes for modern kitchens . tha t particular recipe di d leave out the ginger . there is one thing I can report to Mead's credit: he did not perpetrat th e misconcepe tion common today that medieval diners chewed messily on large bones and thre w them around wit h wild abandon. Richard Warner. . . . Aresty at least recognized that this pasta dish was an early version of macaroni. This is gingerbread without ginger!' Indeed. Th e Delectable Past (New York. glossed 'ew ardaunt'as 'hotwater'. after complainin g that the names of medieval recipes are often 'misleading'. However. One of the medieval recipes that Mead treats with scorn continue s to be a locus of misinformation to this day.but no 2 Esther B. champagne an d gi n were quite unknown in medieval times' (p . 1964) . He may . boiled an d serve d with cheese an d butter. in the edition he consulted. 100). brandy) ar e amply documented i n such sources as the confectionery collections found in primarily medical manuscripts. that 'Macaroni. Esther B. p. and there is one reference to 'ew ardaunt'. p. appears to have been wholly lacking on Englis h table s during th e perio d w e are studying' . have been misle d by an erro r mad e b y one o f the early editors of the Forme ofCury. whose edition appeared in 1791.2 although I cannot sa y much fo r the authenticit y of her 'adapted ' recipes . That is. Aresty. 48).102 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe eaten at all. says. distilled wines (i. It can be presumed tha t neither Warne r no r Mead had an y expertise i n kitchen matters . at least by the well-to-do (e. one of the medieval terms for distilled spirits. although th e recipe concerne d is for a pastry castle which was evidently meant to be served dramatically aflame. in the fourteenth-century Forme ofCury. but when we learn ho w it is made we see that the nam e connotes nothing we have known before . It may also be culinary ignorance o n Mead's part which leads him to state.

1996) . that 'the delicacy which refreshed Sir Thopas ha d a flavour which would be quite recognizable to today's gingerbread fanciers'. (2n d edn . PleynDelit: Medieval Cookery for Modern Cooks (Toronto.P . 1985) . 3 That is not th e onl y problem w e face wit h medieva l 'gingerbread' . p. 1976) . ed. I must confess that I have probably also been amon g thos e givin g misleading information on this subject. as I trust those will agree who have tried the recipe Sharon Butler and I adapted. However. S 5 To boill e the chikne s with th e marybones' . ed . An d th e recip e in MS Harleian 279 .Making Sense of Medieval Culinary Records 10 3 doubt by scribal error. Indiana. pt v. in part or in whole. around thirt y of them: and I now know I was drawing my conclusions on insufficien t evidence . C. 19 (p. Vasta an d Z. ) 4 Constance B. 160 . Thundy (Notr e Dame.N. There is overwhelming evidence that the usual meaning of'gingerbread' in manuscript s o f the fourteent h an d fifteent h centurie s was neither 3 Curye on Inglysch: English Culinary Manuscripts of the Fourteenth Century (Including the Forme ofCury). . 154. Hieatt and Sharo n Butler. 5 But in the years which have passed since I wrote that remark I have read my way through scores of manuscripts and edited . they ar e simpl y earlier spelling s fo r ginger . 1970) . starting with Baugh's 1963 edition. Th e recip e adapted here is taken from BL . But the examples cite d there which may (or may not) suppor t thi s definition are no t reall y references to ginger bread a t all.B . no. Culinary historians have long known that th e OE D is not entirel y reliable in these matters. Readers of Chaucer are misled if they assume that the gingerbread enjoyed by Sir Thopas was exactly like the cake you can run u p from a mix available at any grocery store nowadays. 122 . the pos sible implication of the tempora l proximit y of the cakelik e recipe an d the literary reference is not noted. Butler (London . E. I wrote. is cited by the OE D immediately after the quotation from 'Sir Thopas'. in Chaucerian Problems and Perspectives. Robinson edition s of Chaucer. Hieat t and S . but. an d slightl y earlier. ther e i s at least on e othe r similar . M Harleian 279 . which is obviously not on e fo r preserved ginger . the prevailing gloss has become 'preserve d ginger'. recipe which makes no such e one Mead scoffed at .4 The glosses for Sir Thopas's gingerbrea d assure d read ers that that was what was meant in the Skeat and F. which is what the Chaucer Glossary (1979 ) and th e Riverside Chaucer (1987) tel l students is the meaning . but Chaucer editor s now seem to have more faith in that dubious definition than I find to be justifiable. in an article published in 1979. no. 128 . I cannot trac e this change back to its origin beyond th e fact that this is the meanin g o f the wor d given a s the 'apparent ' meanin g o f 'earl y examples' i n the OED. but the medieval recipes for a spiced cake made of bread crumbs and honey are still recognizably of the same family.

Kare n Hess (Ne w York. 342. in whole or in part.le t alone earlie r i n the century . very funny. in whole or in part . ed . It is all the mor e interesting in tha t it gives us a clear demonstration o f the persistenc e of far more ancien t recipe s righ t into what we have always considered t o be the 'American ' culinary heritage. although the latter remained popular for some us around 2075 recipes not previously printed. they brought hi m tw o kinds of sweet drinks and thre e kinds of expensive candy: gingery 'toffee'. That is . as well as a great many new (and often corrected) versions of some which Martha Washington's Booke of Cookery. I find the whole passage. p. With sugre that is trye. By 1900 around thirteen culinary manuscripts of English provenance. selective although i t most definitely is). it is such a thoroughly childish treat ! It is not surprising that we all know a lot more now than we did fiftee n years ago . re-examined. thus understood. of recipes printed from these manuscripts amounts to about 1850. rathe r tha n anythin g resemblin g cake . Anglo-Norman o r Middle English. a confection resemblin g toffee . mad e o f nothing mor e tha n hone y and spices. although my colleagues interested i n the continental record s have been far from idle (a s the Appendix shows. Since 1900 (an d almost all in the last decade or so). liquoric e and candied cumin seeds. had been edited and printed. As Mrs Hess clearly shows. we are told tha t his 'merry men' brought hi m sweet wine and mead : And roial spicerye Of gyngebreed that was ful fyn . Th e followin g estimates of publication records deal only with recipes recorded in England. seems to suggest thi s strongly. an d th e context . I now think it is far more likely that Sir Thopas refreshed himself with candy. including those simply collated The number . whether Latin . there is a recipe almost identical t o th e fourteenth-centur y versio n i n Marth a Washington' s eighteenth-century 'American ' cookbook. Martha Washington's 'cookbook' was neither 'American ' no r eighteenth-century in its origins. and ee k comyn.give n th e outpouring of serious published work in the field which I commented o n above. And lycorys.not counting those re-edited . 6 . 6 Bu t th e vas t majorit y o f medieval recipes with thi s title are fo r a chewy but fairl y hard candy . The simple statistics here ar e really remarkable.104 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe preserved ginger nor a cake made with honey and breadcrumbs. 1981) . something like twenty-one additional manuscripts have been edited.

these may have significant variants which remain unnoticed. p. there remains a total of almost 2000 recipes in need of editorial attention: about as many as have been edited in this century. 237 . Jerome Pichon (Paris . our basi c database ha s more tha n doubled. i s also use d by [MS] L:cf. 1847 .ar e an Curye o n Inglysch. 91. 8 Rudolf Grewe . Consider. ed. 113. p. I discovered . and more tha n th e total number edite d in previous centuries. 1888. The haute cuisine of western Europe was an international one: with distinctive local variants. translating Emeles in MS Al. 185 . and 'MP ' t o Le menagier de Paris. for example. reprinte d London. when we add to these completely unpublished collections the unedite d recipe s in manuscripts which have only been edited o r collate d i n part . but one must often look well beyond national boundaries to explain recip e terminology . of the 'published ' recipes .. In any event. The fac t i s that ther e ar e a t least twelve Englis h manuscripts which have never been edited at all. 8 and almonds . an d thos e i n unsatisfactory editions which still need re-editing. n. 7 I soo n cam e t o realiz e thi s was incorrect. many have only been 'collated ' in editions of parallel recipes. It is not just the evidence to be found in English culinary manuscripts which can cast new light on medieval English recipes. Ye t it still cannot b e sai d tha t th e fiel d ha s been adequatel y covered. p . in some cases. while the job o f recording medieva l English recipes is surely now more tha n half done. Obviously . on a recipe from a very early source: EMELES I 46. 208 . of course. reprinted Geneva.d. note. ed. Tho mas Austin (EETS . is a spelling for 'almonds' in a fourteenth-century Catalan cookbook. We must realize that any conclusions based on what appears to be only two-thirds of the presentl y extant evidence are tentative and subjec t to further correctio n a s more evidenc e becomes available. 'CB' refer s to Tw o Fifteenth-Century Cookery Books. an d tha t th e wor d i s thus etymologicall y related t o 'omelet' . 1964) . The Frenc h nam e seem s to indicat e that these cake s are a n enriche d variety of the Alumellepile a u sucre of MP.Making Sense of Medieval Culinary Records 10 5 had bee n edite d before . tha t 'Cyuele' . p. ed. ther e i s unquestionably still a great deal of work to be done . 7 . a glossary entry I wrote some time before 1980 . 'Emeles' . Furthermore. 5 here. however. although we can hope tha t such cases are only a small minority now. We must also remember that . 1979) .). ii. CB . and these manuscripts contai n hundred s of recipes. Libre de Sent Soft (Barcelona . original series . vol.whic h are not an ingredient o f an 'alumelle' at all . th e spellin g indicate d i n 1 .

notably medical treatises and menus .'. and had to give a revised version in an article in which I corrected a number o f erroneous reading s i n th e book. The scrib e who substituted y for i was trying to prevent what he too k to be 'iu ' from bein g 'misread' as 'm'. A t that time. The y do not work at all well for th e English and Scandinavia n recipes which I know best. 9 this was far from bein g the only one. an d a n m. however. an d now tha t I have considered th e matte r mor e closely . I found tha t grav e difficultie s aris e i n handlin g th e title s of English and Scandinavian recipes. the document i n which it appears and the principal ingredient and general category of the dish.106 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe essential. and I was asked t o b e responsibl e fo r th e Englis h component. The principa l problem s are . I made this discovery too late to correct the entry in the printed edi tion. and if I were redoing tha t article now I would have to add yet more.10 However. A decade o r so ago. it is often difficult to distinguish betwee n th e capita l letter s C and E in hands of this period. I was busy with other projects . For a while. The information considered minimally essential by those who designed that project consisted of the titl e of the dish. 10 9 . Italian and Spanis h collections. difficulties which apparently did no t occur to those working primarily with French. announced a database t o be undertaken unde r the general heading o f 'Nommes d e plats' (th e titles o f recipes) . see the Appendix . this group. what we clearly need i s a computerized databas e containin g information about the individual recipes included in all the known English and European manuscripts . I doubt tha t th e methods proposed for use with French materials by the Paris group are adequate for a project o f more international scope . that later modification s t o many 'Further Notes on "Th e Form e o f Cury" et al. first. Furthermore. As stated (althoug h I was informed a t a later dat e tha t thi s had bee n somewha t modified) i n the programme for a conference hel d at the University of Montreal in May 1990. it seeme d w e were going t o ge t somethin g o f the sor t from a group based i n Paris. I suspect this will turn ou t t o be th e case with other recipes in Germanic languages. under th e leadership of Professor Jean-Louis Flandrin . i t is easy to see how the spellin g 'cyuele' would have (almost inevitably) arisen fro m a misreading of 'emele' . written with three minims . could easily be read a s iu. If those of us working on early culinary history are ever to be able to call on all the data we need t o make well-informed judgements. along with dishes mentioned in other sources . primary ingredient of the Anglo-Norman (and English) 'emeles'.

tha t w e need a much mor e detaile d approac h t o recipe s an d thei r title s tha n was proposed t o those o f us present a t the meetin g in Montreal in 199 0 (much less what was vaguely circulated a few years earlier). Brereton and Jane M. clearly the ancesto r of these strange English names. I believe.' Hauseleamye' i n an AngloNorman version becomes 'hauceleamye' in an early Middle English translation.borrowe d fro m othe r languages. with enough 'Brouets. 11 However. Note how misleading a change in titl e can be if we have not caugh t other detail s in th e recipe s which show them t o be more o r less identical. 12 The Frenc h culinar y term 'houssie'is. A further problem is the changes in titles which wer e sometime s mad e whe n a recip e wa s translated fro m on e language into another. secondly.Making Sense of Medieval Culinary Records 10 7 recipes ma y make them almos t unrecognizable. t p. which is what one medieva l authority tells us is meant by 'houssie'. and. their tide is only gradually corrupted otherwise. that we still have a long way to go in establishing th e original etymolog y (and thus . ls Presumabl y later English cooks or scribes didn't understand i t either. although I have not found any explanation fo r th e puzzlin g Anglo-Norman additio n 'leamye'. which means the juice of sour grapes). therefore. Georgine E. I found i t to be essentiall y identical t o a recipe i n severa l English collections. when I analysed th e content s an d procedure s involve d in this recipe. Th e ke y ingredients remai n exactly th e same : chicken . which Professor Flandrin has argued i n an important and influential article is exclusively French because the French titl e does not appear in English recipe collections. meaning) of many medieval food names. While the English scribes do not call the dish a' bruef. there ar e a number of other case s in which Professor Flandrin was wron in thinking a 'French' dish did g not appea r i n Englis h versions. sauce d wit h sour grape s (th e equivalen t of the French verjuice. ed. and transcribed by scribes whose corruptions of the originals may border o n th e bizarre. thirdly. that a grea t number o f their titles are . thus. since hauceleamyewas shortened to hocchee. potages et bouillons'. an d 'hocchee ' i n Th e Forme o f Cury. 13 Nor have any of the Anglo-Normanists I have consulted. Le menagier de Paris. 1981). 216. No computer wil l be able t o enlighten u s much unless we provide it with enoug h informatio n t o extrac t th e specia l characteristic s which make a particular dish different fro m other similar dishes.lik e that o f 'emeles' . One exampl e is the French 'brouet houssie'. Ferrier (Oxford. and notably garnished wit h parsley. in part. see the Appendix. 12 11 .

on a microfilm reader or in photocopies. While Professor Scully' s database may eventually be able to lend itself to far wider uses than any more selective method o f collecting information. a record of all the recipes in the corpus in their entirety is not really necessary. as far as I know. subsequently published. at least eight collections representing or drawing extensively on Th e Forme ofCury. althoug h th e presenc e o r lac k o f a thickene r ma y be a distinguishing characteristic of certain other dishes . 14 . Fortunately. entir e collections . My information is limited to the oral paper and a report from anothe r schola r who had talke d to Scully about hi s methods . coul d give us a foundation fo r the kind of analysis I am urging. recor d the entire recipe ? Thi s is the approach take n by Terence Scully .suc h as whether brouet houssie/hoccheeis thickened. I have some microfilms of manuscripts I cannot decipher a t all. and not . if the detail s included ar e chosen an d classifie d carefully . I therefore propos e t o transcribe mor e limite d entries. for example. lies the obvious difficulty. There are. and if so how (bread and/or eggs): a matter which. which. fo r anyon e concerne d wit h English materials. Therein. 14 Yet. since large parts of identifiable collections with a common source are found in multiple versions with little variation i n the essential details . is of no importance whatsoever. th e chor e would n o doubt take u p mor e years tha n I have left .i n fact. I f I were t o tr y t o ente r complet e recipe s in all cases. Sometimes i t can tak e m e several days of brooding an d checkin g various references before I can be reasonably sure I have correctly deciphere d a single recipe . I fear his procedure i s not practicable if we are to achieve a complete record o f the English manuscripts in anything like the next twenty years or so. considering tha t a substantial proportion o f th e manuscript s containin g English recipes remain s unedited. h e di d no t state explicitl y that h e ha d use d thi s technique o n material s existing only i n unprinte d manuscripts .108 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe specific informatio n t o make it possible t o ignore th e accidental s and accretions . then. while Scully said he had no w recorded 'al l known collections' o f such recipes . Must we. an d a number of other collection s A paper delivered at the Kalamazoo Medieval Institute that year. in this case. apparently by simply using a scanner on them. who reported i n 1993 that he has recorded hundred s of entire medieval recipe s .i n a database . how could a scanner help in a case where I know I will never be abl e t o read thi s manuscript unless I can find the time and mone y to visit the library which holds it? Some are so difficult tha t even studying the original under ultra-viole t light does not resolve al l problems.

named for the funnel through which the batter was poure and consisting of a simple mixture d of flour leavened with sourdough . however. that certain basi c information about the recipe and th e manuscript i n which it appears mus t come first. My idea o f a usefu l wa y to describ e a recipe whic h will includ e al l necessary details but not take an undue amount of time to draw up has been deeply influenced by consultations with other scholars in the field. This was. It also seems obvious that 'mai n ingredients' mus t be handle d with care: you cannot simply categorize a dish as using 'chicken' as against. whic h were often very different and. 'blancmanger' using poultry might be one listing. It is still only tentative: I am now in touch with an expert on computer s (and databases ) wh o ma y considerably modify m y proposals. as is the cas e with what I have noted is distinguished b y the us e o f verjuice (o r sou r grapes) and parsley . . when we stopped t o consider th e matter. The pioneer s in Franc e starte d with th e categorie s used i n medieva l French cooker y books an d menus . as long as they are examine d wit h a carefu l ey e to wha t may turn ou t t o b e significant variants . Brouet houssie typically calls for chicke n o r veal.Making Sense of Medieval Culinary Records 10 9 where smalle r groups of virtually unchanged recipe s fro m thi s source can be r example. When a recipe has one or more alternativ e versions. which may change ou r understandin g of individual recipes or related groups. was actually a miscopied version of an older recipe called 'mistembec'. Vegetable (including fruits). for example. No t only did man y popular dishe s have 'fast day ' versions. and Dairy (including eggs). Such recipes can be noted briefl y as variants. I t seems clear. the case with my earlier discovery that the Forme of Cury fritter recipe called 'nysebek'. But i t is also necessar y t o lis t th e mino r ingredients : som e dishe s ar e distinguished as a group by their seasonings o r garnishes. say. on th e othe r hand . each woul d have a separate listin g . and ' blancmanger of fish' a separate entry . but also many recipes routinely suggest alternative substitutions i n mor e o r les s the sam e category. Fish. dividing 'principal ingredients' int o Meats (including poultry). I. often inconsistent. Placing a recipe int o a category describing i n genera l wha t type of dish it is can also be useful. 'meat' or 'fish' . started with those used in England . I propose t o handle thi s situation by initially classifying a dish as falling into one o f four large groups. which appeared to be an odd mixture of sorrel and flour. substituting fish (or cheese o r fruit) fo r the 'mai n ingredient' used on a day when flesh meat was permitted. but here we get onto ground where it may be difficult to make distinctions which are valid in more than one country.

. simply. suc h recipe s als o usually come a t th e end o f a medieval English recipe collection . Bu t when it comes to smaller subdivisions . neither of these categories 15 Curye on Inglysch. So did many medieval collections. or something of the sort). th e logic of the groupings may elude us. which no English collection sorts into separate groups. it is apt to be very confusing for modern student s of the subject. [and] aftirwar d i t techiJD for to make curious potage s & meetes and sotiltees'. Fo r example . Frenc h collection s often mak e distinctions between thickene d an d unthickened pottages .at least. 'running'. that they were special treats. under the general rubric of'entremets'. an d thu s came later. the major French recip e collections invariabl y group suc h dishe s a t th e en d of th e collection . . But. to 'desserts' and (usuall y finally) 'confections' . they part ways. while English recipes often specify that a particular pottage must be 'chargeant 'or 'standing'.110 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe A modern cookbook generally sorts foods into categories which depend on the order in which we customarily serve them. although many French menus suggest that formal meals in France began with just such delicat e titbits.. p . The medieval rationale was. 'meat'. between th e 'common ' and th e 'curious' . as our 'desserts' are: while many of them were sweetened. . 'Entremets ' usuall y resemble th e special delicacies and 'subtleties' which also make up the final course of a medieval English festive meal . on the contrary. thick. along with the delicacies which were served a t the en d o f the meal .ar e agreed. thin. or 'canapes'. whether or no t the y were 'sweet' . when we look at a medieval cookbook. English and French collections . The sweets and tiny confections which often followed the meal prope r are not usually found in culinary recipe collections at all. those which take care to make the rational e o f their orde r clea r . then progresses through 'soups' . 20 . or. indicate were to be served in the final course were not necessarily sweet. Note that the dishes which the recip e collections. and. etc. or served with a dusting of sugar. The headnot e t o Th e Forme o f Cury declare s 'First it teachiJD man for to make commune potages and commune metis for howshol d . for the simple reason tha t the y wer e likel y t o b e purchase d fro m a professiona l confectioner rather than made in the manor house (o r palace) kitchen. Neither French nor English medieval culinary manuscripts start with hors d'oeuvres. as well as the menus. 15 On thes e broad divisions. but sinc e that order is not necessaril y the same. they were not alway s noticeably sweeter than some of the dishes customarily served earlier in the menu. A typical twentiethcentury cookbook begins with 'appetizers' (or 'hors d'oeuvres'.

Most of the recipes in English manuscripts can be traced to one source collection or another.substantiall y the same recipe. like a modern crea m soup. A dish which an English menu calls a 'pottage' maybe listed in a contemporary cookery book as a 'lechemete': and indeed if a 'pottage' is basically something boiled in a pot. in its beginning . just as we must include all ingredients. whereas a 'standing' pottage is one that is thickened t o the consistency of a thick porridge. While I do not thin k we really must record th e entire recipe. when cold. the delicacies which come at or towards the en d of the meal which are generally grouped together as 'entremets'in French collections are in England often consigned to separate categories entitled 'lechemetes' (food s served in slices) and'fried metes' (suc h as fritters). we may have t o adher e t o th e metho d o f cooking as a guide. just a s it appear s i n th e manuscript. or around a dozen words. with a considerable gain in our understanding of the history of particular recipes.a s a pottage without offence to French researchers. Or started out to be one.16 On th e other hand . That is usuall enoug to make it possible for a researcher who compares y h it with a recipe recorde d in another manuscript t o determine whethe r it i s .a t least. that stil l leave s us with a vast number in the 'pottage' group. and I am sure man y French recipe s coul d als o be classifie d in 'family ' groups. This is the first line or so of the recipe . If we are to agree on a category classification that will suit both English and continenta l examples .Making Sense of Medieval Culinary Records 11 1 is necessarily unthickened . is sliced an d grille d in a separate category . Whe n recipes i n differen t manuscripts clearl y ar e th e same . this would allow me to categorize 'furmenty' -which is grouped wit h humble vegetable pottages in England but classifie d as an 'entremet'm som e French collections . Yet even if we put a pottage which. there is one part of it which shoul d indee d b e recorde d verbatim . This means that we must be meticulous in recordin g such specifica tions as 'make it standing' as part of the record for an individual recipe. and researchers must be able to see the characteristics of a particular pottage. the famil y of The Forme ofCury or of Le viandier de Taillevent. some end up as grilled dishes . A 'running' pottag e i s usually on e tha t i s only moderately thick. the y belong t o what I term the sam e 'family' grou p o f recipes: for example. Or eve n thicker : 'jellies ' are ofte n categorize d as 'a potage called gelee ' in the menus of the period. too. None o f thi s is necessarily consistent with men u designations . it is a pottage. including garnishes. 16 .

Line 6 Cookin g procedures. here are three recipes for a dish called 'mawmenny' : 1 1 BL . which is close enough t o the colou r o f indigo. author (i f known). recipe category . folio on which it begins. sugar. i f this can be identified. Line 5 Ingredients . is the information I propose to record for each recipe: Line 1 M S title. I thu s propos e t o includ e i n a recipe descriptio n th e famil y t o which i t belongs. or from whic h i t descends. Line 2 Nam e of recipe as it appears here. Note . Here. number in this collection. 7 3 Mawmenny . braun of chapoun ipolled al to poudre. i t is often unnecessary to give full detail s other than ways in which th e particula r example differs: reader s can be referred t o the prototype. an item (such as the name of an anonymous author) will simply be passed by . When n o gues s or explanation ca n be hazarded . that several othe r medieval recipe s cal l specifically for indigo as a food colouring . then. ground almonds. with semi-colons separating groups required at different stage s of cooking. fried almonds. & sojajaen d o pryn 5 Wine . 'principle ingredient' category. Line 4 Firs t line or so of recipe . 2 4 Wyn . folio number for a collection in a scroll with no suc h numbers . some of the information demande d on a line of the entry does not always exist: for example. indigo colouring [?] 17 6 Boi l 7 Suga r to 'abaten \>e streynjie' o f the spicing Two people who had actuall y cooked using this recipe tol d m e they did not need to add an y colouring: the colou r produce d by this combination o f ingredients turne d out t o be lavender. clove powder. As examples of how this might work. I do no t know whether indig o woul d be considered fi t fo r human consumptio n today . Of course. approximate date. 46919. 19r. semi-colons to correspond to stages indicated in the ingredien t list. M. Line 7 Characteristic s of this particular recipe not already noted. a s well as the opening clause (s). Line 3 Normalize d spelling of recipe name. 17 .which will usually be enough to characterize this particular version and t o locate it in its family group if that is not ye t known. recipe 'family' i f identified. PO. however . c. ground 'gretvlehs ' [beef?] .112 Food an d Eating i n Medieval Europe Ten English familie s can be identified. most of which dra w on earlier ones. MS Add. in order called for. dark meat of capon. With thi s information. 1325 2 Maumenee .

egg yolks. but i s simply t o b e saffron yellow . almond milk . datin g fro m ver y early in th e fourteent h century. Like almost all English collections. Instead of ground beef. thicken. ric e flour or crumbs or wheat starch (res t as in recipe 2 above) 6 Cho p and grind. 4 (< 2?) 4 Ta k be byys ober be flesch o f be caponys. mix (an d simmer). very thick: 'charchant' 3 1 BL . translates an Anglo-Norman recipe of the late thirteenth. t so much as a thickening agent but. garnish 7 Preliminar y cooking omitted. The thir d recipe . c . 'galentyn' powde r 6 Boil . 5016 . an ide a which was just a s exotic then a s it would be now . The dish i s no longe r t o be coloure d indig o blue (o r lavender). cloves . M. which i s not divide d into folios. PO. to help. although no t a n exact duplicate: more alternatives appear in the lis t . Sebe hem an d ker f 5 Capo n meat. PO. saffron. roll. grind. Oxford.Making Sense of Medieval Culinary Records 11 2 3 1 Bodleia n Library. on th e othe r hand . the second is from the later fourteenth century and the last from the early fifteenth century. almond milk . beef broth. 1381 2 Maumene . 4 4 Tak e be chese and o f flessh o f capouns or of hennes an d hakke 5 Capo n o r hen meat . garnish 7 Dar k or white meat. mix and simmer . 'thighs' miscopied as 'cheese' The firs t o f these. a commonplac e colourin g i n th e period . MS Add. 1420 2 Mawmenny . t o make the dish 'yellow'. And the cloves are supplemented with 'galentyn' powder-which may mean the spice galingale. ground rice or wastell bread. we are told t o use beef broth or some other meat broth and a thickening of rice flour or breadcrumbs. beef or other mea t broth. an d the ingredient s differ just enough t o matter. so no author s appear. The whole almonds have disappeared. an d th e las t is a scroll. MS Douce 257. these are anonymous . M. All three o f these ar e vaguel y related. the recipe says . 194 3 Mawmenny . which never again appears in any English 'mawmenny' recipe. Eg g yolk s creep in . along with the saffron . i s 'the same ' a s the second . but not e tha t the secon d is not a t all the 'same ' as the first: the wording is entirely different. 30 3 Mawmenny .

sometimes garnished with pistachio s . Th e Delectable Past. elsewhere .18 It is. Inevitably. A culinary historian who looked a t that thir d mawmenn y recipe withou t realizin g it s relationship t o the on e abov e migh t wel l reach a n entirel y wrong conclusion . Her e 'chese ' make s a unique an d startling appearance a s a prime ingredient in a dish well known. which can give important clues when something went wrong in the transmission . 45 . in Petitspropos culinaires. no known French example of the dish . 19 18 .plu s a few alternatives. it is easy to misread t as c in many scribal hands. 20 The mos t illuminating discussion o f the histor y of this dish i s Maxime Rodinson's essay 'La Ma'muniyyat en Orient et en Occident'. which is normal for a later cop y . some may be surprised to hear tha t 'mawmenny' is not a dish of French origin . 15-25. You can se e that this is so because it begins the sam e way. pp. in recip e 2 above. 68 and 144 . That this is the case here is clear only because the recipe is easily identified as the same as that in M S Douce 257. whic h was ofte n simpl y a fatenriched porridge. Anyone who look s at th e res t of the recip e wil l see that it follows th e origina l wording very closely. 1962) .114 Food an d Eating i n Medieval Europe of ingredients. possibly spelled 'thees' i n the exemplar here miscopied . Bu t one differenc e shoul d have caught th e ey e at once . indeed. Professor Rodinso n include d a number of recipes. 33 (1989). the Italian and English versions of the dish are very differen t from th e origina l Arabi c ma'mumya. milk and breast meat of chickens.ther e is. the mor e elaborate d i t is apt t o r which the whole almond s i n th e Anglo-Norman version wer e probably a substitute .19 Incidentally. therefore. 23-24 .but one adapted in Italy and England from an Arabic e later the copy. this is a scribal error for 'thighs': that is. Had chees e crep t in a s a substitute ingredient in the fifteent h century? No indeed! As my last line indicates. except omittin g directions for first cooking the capo n meat . as. Aresty. thos e closes t to medieval Italian and English versions call for rice. dark meat of the capon. Esther Aresty did when she chose that recipe fo r a moder n adaptation. contains the same ingredients . This shows how vital it may be to establish the recipe's ancestry. and follows the same procedures. As anyone who ha s looke d a t medieva l manuscripts knows. in fact. with on e omission . quite improbable tha t any cook ever actually added cheese to the 'mawmenny'. pp. originally published i n Etudes d'Orientalisme dediees a l a memoire d e Levi-Provenfal (Paris . b y Barbar a Inskip as 'Ma'muniyya East and West'. 20 All three recipes ar e printed i n Curye on Inglysch: se e pp. and lacking cheese. trans .

Making Sense of Medieval Culinary Records 11 5 It is clear. I would be only too delighted to welcome more recruits to the field to help in what sometimes look s like an impossible mountain o f work. I n thi s essay I have cited French . tha t th e culinary historian's frame of reference has to be a wide one. This rather dauntin g situation may explain. . Arabic and (obliquely ) Scandinavian examples. therefore. i n part . m y relatively isolated positio n i n attemptin g t o complete th e record of medieval English culinary manuscripts. Catalan .

Jones. Menjot. ed. Prentki. Medium aevum. T. I. 1985). 315-88. 1993). Bulletin o f the John Ry lands University Library o f Manchester. D. J. Le viandierde Taillevent. C. 54-71. Hieatt. 859-82. 101-231. . Hammond.B. Lambert (Montreal. 100 (1988). C. P. Laurioux and A.Bostrom (Stockholm. ed. 2 vols (Oxford. B. R. Jean de Bockenheim. for 1985). 1985). —. New York. C. Lambert. Middlesex. 'The Middle English Culinary Recipes in MS Harley 5401: An Edition and Commentary'. 1988). Scully. C. Manger et boire au moyen age. pp. 1992). 1984). Valesia 40 (1985). ed. Hieatt and R. Curye on Inglysch: English Culinary Manuscripts oftheFourteenth Century (Including the Forme ofCury). 'Further Notes on Th e Forme ofCury e t al. An Ordinance of Pottage: An Edition of the Fifteenth-Century Culinary Recipes in Yale University's M S Beinecke 163. 'Du fait de cuisine'. ed.Handrin. ed. B. 1992-93).-L. A Second Handbook o f Anglo-Saxon Food and Drink: Production and Distribution (Pinner. 1988). Gloucestershire. A Handbook o f Anglo-Saxon Food: Processing and Consumption (Pinner. Anonimomeridionale.B.Duelibridicudna. The Art o f Cookery i n the Middle Ages (Woodbridge. Le Recueil de Riom. Middlesex. Lambert (Montreal . Woolgar . pp . 5 (1983). ed. 5-14. pp. Household Accounts from Medieval England. potagesetbouillons'. ed. ed. 1995) . 7 0 (1988). Culinary Historians of Boston. 27-4 5 (conferenc e proceedings. pp. C.: Additions and Corrections'. Speculum. in Du manuscrit a la table. 1995). Scully (Ottawa. T.B. Terence Scully. ed. ed. 65 (1996). pp. —. 'An Early Thirteenth-Century Northern-European Cookbook'. 1992). C. Suffolk .M. 'Maistre' Chiquart. ed. 709-60. pp. pp. 1988). Ann Hagen . t ed. Grewe. 2 vols (Paris. pp. Scully (Ne w Yor k and Bern. 1986.F. C. 45-52.116 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe Appendix Some Important Recent Publications on Medieval Food [Anglo-Norman MSS ] 'Two Anglo-Norman Culinary Collections'. Current Research.. 'Registr e de cuisine' . Laurioux. Hieatt and S. Medievales. trans. Food andFeast in Medieval England (Stroud . 'Brouets. Hieatt .. and Rochester. Butler (London. Hieatt (London.B . 61 (1986).B.W. Melanges de I'ecolefrancaisedeRome. C. 'Repertoire des manuscrits medievaux con tenan des recettes culinaires'. 1986). C.

Wrigley. Cities and Economic Development from the Dawn of History t o the Present (Chicago. Bairoch. 2 Roger Scola . Feeding th e Victorian City: Th e Food Supply o f Manchester. M . Irsigler. 44-70 .g. xix. 1991) . 37 (1967) . when Roger Scola's book on Manchester . Growth and Decline in Colchester. 1650-1750'. there is still a notable absence of large-scale studies of particular places. 1988) . 1770-1870 (Manchester. it s editor s claimed (wit h some justification) tha t i t represente d th e firs t book length stud y of the suppl y of food to . as well as channelling th e production o f an extensive geographical area. Fo r Europea n town s see L'approvisionnement de s villes d e I'Europe occidental a u moyen ag e et aux temps moderns (Cinquieme s journees internationales d'histoire . Feeding th e Victorian City. e. a majo r city. an d it s distribution in. pp.3 In th e moder n perio d th e suppl y zones of large cities have widened to national an d internationa l scope . most notably an examination o f the respons e of food producers across an ever-widening area of supply to the demands 1 See. E. Van Uytven and F.8 Feeding Medieval Cities: Some Historical Approaches Margaret Murphy It has been recognized fo r some time that the issue of urban provision ing is central to our understanding of the rol e of urban centre s in th e processes of economic development. 20 (1995). 1985 . . For an exemplary study of a moder n city's role in shaping th e landscape and economy of its region. Cronon. Wolff. Scola indeed acknowledged that he had been forced to abandon several aspects of his provisioning study. 'A Simple Model of London's Importance in Changing English Society and Economy . 1986).1 However.M . appeare d i n 1992 .. See for example R. A group of eight papers which examine aspects of th e provisionin g o f London an d Pari s in th e middl e age s has been published as a special numbe r o f Franco-British Studies. Past an d Present. especially the papers b y P.A. presentin g th e historia n wit h an almost impossible task in getting to grips with the source material. Nature's Metropolis: Chicago and th e Great West (Ne w York and London . see W. Auch. p. 1300-1525 (Cambridge. Britnell. C. 3 Recent works on medieva l English towns contain muc h usefu l materia l on provisioning.2 Although in recent years historians have turned thei r attention to the question of how medieval towns and cities were provisioned an d th e effect of their demands upon their regions. de la Ronciere. Kowaleski . Local Markets an d Regional Trade i n Medieval Exeter (Cambridge . P. Centre culture l de 1'abbaye de Flaran). 1995). R. 1992) .

3 . Feeding the Cit y II. For an introduction t o the aims and some preliminary findings of the projec t see J. It is based upon researc h undertake n as part of the 'Feedin g the City ' projec t in th e Centr e fo r Metropolitan History i n London an d seek s to introduce and summariz e som e o f the principal finding s o f thi s research. London 1500-1700: The Making o f the Metropolis (1986) . Feeding the Victorian City. Th e subjec t is best undertaken b y a team o f researchers who can bring a number o f different approaches t o the topic . Th e Developmen t of th e Londo n Foo d Market . It marks the beginning of systematic study of the impact which the demands of medieval London had on its agricultural region. The Agrarian History of England and Wales. pp. pp. fuel an d building materials to medieval London an d to study the impact of the city's demands on the agricultural an d distributive systems of its hinterland. whose reduced population generated smaller aggregate demands but more diverse ones. 3-14.. Finlay. 168-96 . p. iv. ed. CarusWilson.. However. in J. Everitt. Gallowa y and M . 6 There have . Fisher.5 The first phase of the project focused on the period c. Chartres. however. 1 would like to thank Jim Galloway and Derek Keene for their helpful comments on this present essay. i n E. this time focusing on the post-Black Death capital.118 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe of the growing city. Murphy. 135-51 . Belfast) was funded by the Leverhulme Trust. 1500-1640 (Cambridge. Beier and R . This collaborative researc h projec t brought together urba n and rura l historians and historical geographers in an in-depth investigation o f one o f the mos t crucial aspects of the relationshi p between town and country. Thi project was set up in s 1988 in order t o investigate the supply of food. when the population of London reached it s medieval peak. in A. 'The Marketing of Agricultural Produce'. has been funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (grant number R000233157) . 1984). 1300. ed. co-directed by Derek Keene (Centre for Metropolitan History) and Bruce Campbell (Queen s University. thereby permitting. a s well a s considering whether th e methodology might have a wider applicability.4 In the medieval period th e supply zone of most basic consumables to cities was much more constrained. Feeding the City I. Bruce Campbell. 1540-1640'. This essay presents and discusses some of the historical approaches which have recently been applie d t o the subjec t of provisioning the capita l of England in the fourteenth century. Thirsk. a more manageable study to be undertaken. eds. 'Food Consumption and Internal Trade'.M . pp. 6 The historical approache s applie d by the project can be divided int o Scola. Essays i n Economic History (1954) . James Galloway and Margaret Murphy. co-directed by Derek Keene. the surviving evidence comes from a wid variety of sources and requires expertise e in man y areas. 1 6 (1991). in theory at least. 466-92 . been man y useful survey s of London's food-suppl y region during the early modern period: J. Furthe r fundin g allowe d a second phas e of work to be undertaken. A. Th e London Journal. 'Feedin g the City : Medieval London and it s Agrarian Hinterland'.L. 5 4 .A. FJ. pp.

1-16 . In 1100 perhaps one in one hundred English people live d in the capital and by 1300 the figure was one in seventy or less while the city may have contained 2 per cent of the national wealth. Keene. 1989) . pp . London achieved the position of England's largest and wealthiest town as early as the tenth century. Survey o f Medieval Winchester. 1200-1520 (Cambridge. Barren. 17 (1994). 'Centres of Conspicuous Consumption : The Aristocratic Town House in London. an d thos e concerne d wit h th e system s o f distributio n b y which produc e was transferred from th e rura l producer t o the urba n consumer.12 There wer e also smaller traders . c.000. 8 It is now believed that c. large and small . Winchester Studie s 2 (Oxford . pp . Urban History Yearbook 1984(1984).L. 8 D. 10 C. 'Immigratio n and Population Growt h in Early Fourteenth-Century Norwich: Evidence from th e Tithing Roll'. and fell to around 50.000 and 100. 9 D. Franco-British Studies. 108-30. Most of the richest magnates of the day had London houses where they spent some of the year. and man y bishops and abbot s followed th e exampl e of the nobility and ha d metropolita n residences. 55-67 . artisans and wage-earners big and small. 25. often destitute . 11-21 . it was also extremely varied i n socio-economi c terms . Thrupp Th e Merchant Class of Medieval London (reprinted . pp. 110-26 . 'London . the huge mass of poor. 9 Not onl y was London's populatio n ver y large. 12 Ibid. Michigan. 1 C. 10 The household s o f these lay and ecclesiastical nobles could spend up to half of their considerable incomes o n food. E. 7 . S. . 1200-1500' . 1985) . Keene. Th e cit y contained disproportionat e numbers of both the richest and poorest of England's inhabitants. Dyer . ' A New Study of London Before th e Grea t Fire'. circa 600-1300: The Growt h of a Capital'. 1989)..7 Research publishe d durin g th e las t decade has resulted in a n upward revision of the estimated populations of several medieval English towns and cities. 1300 the population of London was between 80. pp.Feeding Medieval Cities: Some Historical Approaches 11 9 three principal groups: those concerned with reconstructing the requirements o f th e medieva l city . thos e concerne d wit h th e productio n o f basic foodstuff s i n th e countrysid e an d th e developmen t of regiona l specialisms. frequently D. Ann Arbor. 11 Furthermore . pp.000 in the post-Black Death period. Standards o f Living i n th e Later Middle Ages: Social Change i n England. London Journal. 20 (1995). Rutledge. Londo n ha d a large clas s of well-off merchants. Keene. Urban History Yearbook 1988 (1988). 15-30 . as well as many wealthy individuals who derive d their incomes from offic e holdin g or legal practice. some with incomes which placed them in positions of equality with the nobility . p. Under the m were the 'marginals' . pp. The cit y was full o f ecclesiastical establishments.

Most importantly. legumes and fruit. dairy produce. Policy an d Finance under Henry III. pasties and pastries probably accounted for 65-70 per cent of per capita calories consumed. English Historical Review. Keene and M . Prestwich. pp. ale.00 0 at St Paul's. 'Medieval London an d it s Region'. 102. By the mid thirteenth century London containe d larg e number s of poor. 536-43. pp. 1300 C.13 By 1300 it is likely that London contained an even greater numbe r of poverty-stricken inhabitants.M. grains provided the most substantial proportion o f the dail y nutritional needs of rich and poor alike. D.A Galloway. 1300. Then a s now poor peopl e flocked to the cit y in search of jobs. thesis. 82 (1967). its Grain Supply: Agrarian Production and Distribution in the London Region. 'Victualling Estimates for English Garrisons in Scotland during the Earl y Fourteenth Century' . 1987) . 240. A study of the diet of the English lay nobility indicates that bread. Historical Geography Research Series . 16 B. 1300.120 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe homeless Londoners. Thurgood. Agricultural History Review. The consumption need s of the capital were therefore not only large in scale but very diverse. Murphy. 21-37. Stacey. 15 This dependenc e o n grai n calorie s in pre-industria l town s explains why many provisioning studies have been dominate d by the examina tion of grain supply. ale and oatmeal flour: M. London Journal. 14 D. University of London.16 In thi s work th e projec t evolved a methodology for estimatin g the aggregat e demand fo r grain generated b y a city of London's size in thi s period. Campbell. a better life and charitable hand-outs. This bega n wit h a n estimat e o f a dail y per capit a nutritiona l intak e R. 13 . The first major work produced by the Feeding the City project concentrated o n London' s grain suppl y c. Politics. vegetables.00 0 meals t o b e distribute d t o th e poo r i n Westminster and 15. Dyer. Henry III in 1244 made provisio n for 20. 1 4 (1989). 15 A study based o n th e estimate s of food supplies neede d fo r soldiers garrisonin g English castles in Scotland a t the beginning o f the fourteenth century revealed a diet in which 78 per cen t of calorific intake was provided b y grains in the form of bread. c. A Medieval Capital and . : 'Changes in Die t in th e Lat e Middle Ages: The Cas e of Harvest Workers'.C. 36 (1988).S. 1216-1245 (Oxford. Keene.M. Christopher Dyer's work on the diets of harvest workers confirms the predominance of grains with bread and ale supplying up to 80 per cent of dietary calories. p. however.Phil . 1982) . p.and stock-fish . while the numbe r o f calories consumed per capit a varied greatly between social groups. c. salt. Studies have shown that . During the months of July and August 1302 the royal household spen t £1454 on food (mor e than hal f o f that su m on mea t alone ) i n Londo n an d it s immediat e region. J. J. The richest people required luxury items and consumed large amounts of fresh mea t and fish. 3 0 (1993). 1265-1531' (unpublishe d M.14 Fres h mea t an d fis h wer e beyond th e norma l reac h o f less well-off Londoner s but the y could affor d poultry . The Die t and Domestic Households of the English Lay Nobility. all classes required grain s fo r thei r basic bread an d ale .

23-34 . Keene an d M. leading t o th e conclusio n tha t London . Murphy. Galloway. malting. the aggregate grain requirement als o fell . pp.18 A different methodology ha s been applie d t o estimating the quantities of firewood needed t o supply London i n the fourteenth century. the rise in living standards. 18 James A. 49 (1996). 'London' s Grain Supply: Changes in Production.000. with a population of 80. 17 . pp. Hatcher .17 The nex t step involved calculating the quantity of raw grain which would be needed to provide the requisite number of daily calories. when the population o f London fell to around 50. it is virtually impossible to calculate an average per capita fuel requirement whic h would incorporat e general domestic heating and cooking needs as well as the fuel consumed by industry. based on the work of nutritionists (2000-250 0 kilocalories). It was assume that each Londoner consumed 1600-2000 graind derived kilocalories a day. See also Margaret Murphy . 20 (1995) pp . of which ale comprised 160-200 kilocalories . i . although othe r fuels such as charcoal and coa l were available.. 85-96. Franco-British Studies. In this period. wood was by far th e mos t important source of energy. For the purposes of further calculation a mean annual figure of 1. pp. 1300-1400'. 1290-1400'.65 quarters of grain pe r capit a was taken. D.000 persons. as well as allowing for calorie loss arising from the processes of milling. s o that overall demand di d not fal l by as much as the population figures would suggest. It was then assume d tha t between 6 0 and 7 5 per cen t of these dail y calorie s wer e supplied b y grain i n th e for m o f bread an d ale. 19 J. 20 J. Distribution and Consumptio n durin g th e Fourteent h Century' . 41. would have required 132. which occasione d an increase in ale consumption. However. p. 447-72. Th e Fue l Suppl y of Medieval London . 19 The medieva l city generated a n enormou s deman d fo r both domesti c and industrial fuel. I t wa s therefore necessar y in th e cas e o f fuel t o dra w on evidence concernin g a later period. 1993) . There are no contemporar y record s of total quantitie s o f fue l consumed by London and. Franco-British Studies. 20 The quantities of coal had first to be converted into a dry wood equivalent. baking and brewing. unlike with grain. Economic History Review.000 quarters of grain each year. Before 1700: Towards th e Age of Coal (Oxford. had th e effec t o f raising the per capita consumption o f grains. 32-36.75 ton s estimated fo r London i n 1600. 20 (1995) .Feeding Medieval Cities: Some Historical Approaches 12 1 necessary t o sustain life . specificall y th e annua l pe r capit a coal consumption figur e o f 0. Ibid. Th e History o f the British Coal Industry. In the latter half of the fourteenth century. Galloway. building in an element for the fodder requirements o f animals used to bring grain overland t o the city. A range of estimates was therefore produced fro m thi s admittedly approximate exercise. 'Fuellin g the City: Production and Distribu tion of Firewood and Fue l in London's Region.

while persons in wealthy or aristocratic households coul d consume two to three pound s of meat and fish per day. concentrations of urban population coul d not survive. Thurgood.76 tons of firewood required by each Londoner each year. A very wide rang e o f animals an d fish .00 0 ton s per annu m i n 140 0 when th e populatio n ma y have been 50. an d 88. with a postulated populatio n o f 80. have yet to be postulated and. wil l b e explored i n future research. In th e medieva l perio d mos t citie s relie d o n thei r agraria n hinter lands for the suppl y of basic foodstuffs (i n addition t o fuel fo r cooking and heating . th e ris e in living standard s whic h followe d th e Blac k Death resulte d i n a rise i n individual demand for fuel both for cooking (including baking and brewing) an d domestic heating. p. was available for purchas e i n fourteenth-century London. fish and dairy produce. amon g others . pp. The diet of most urban dwellers was to a large extent dictated b y wha t the countrysid e coul d efficientl y produce . Without a regular sourc e of these necessities. examinin g broad patterns of land-use and the range of crops grown and animals reared i n a city's hinterland is an excellent first step in th e constructio n o f a picture o f urban foo d supply and als o in th e analysis o f rura l respons e t o th e challeng e o f provisionin g a majo r 21 22 Dyer. such as meat. A t th e mos t basi c level. As with grain. 22 The situation was not static and in the late r fourteenth centur y there was a marked increase in meat consumption among th e les s well-off. bot h fresh an d preserved . 'Diet and Domesti c Households'. Thi s approach .000 . therefore. 21 Reasonable estimates of the city's demand for other products. 177 . On that basis it was estimated that London would have consumed 141. Standards o f Living. wealth and influence of the occupational groups involved in particula r victuallin g trades.00 0 tons of wood per annu m in 1300. if the exercise is possible. Some impression of the relative importance of various products in the metropolitan diet at different periods might be gained by analysing the numbers. In order for towns and cities to grow. .122 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe an exercise which resulted in the figure of 1. Dyer . 58-62. Dietary evidence suggests that in the early fourteenth century meat and fish were largel y absent fro m the table s of the poor . clot h for clothing and raw materials for industry) .000. Standards o f Living. rural hinterlands ha d t o be capable of increasing supplies either b y more efficien t an d productiv e farmin g method s o r bette r transport network s allowing further-flung area s to enter th e city' s supply zone. timbe r for building. differen t methodologie s agai n ma y have t o b e employed .

Feeding Medieval Cities: Some Historical Approaches


concentration o f non-rural population . Th e Feedin g the Cit y projec t has undertaken suc h a study of land-use an d agricultura l practices in ten countie s in south-east England (Figur e 4) The study area denned by the project was not intended to represent the limit s of the Londo n agraria n region . I n it s demand for food an d other supplie s London exerte d influenc e upon a series of overlapping regions, some extending a few miles from the city, others taking in much of the country . The te n countie s chosen fo r study were considered t o form an area sufficiently compac t to enable detailed work to be carried out, yet large enough to contain regions with contrasting soils, topography, differential acces s to marketing and transpor t networks, and distinctive agrarian regimes . The survivin g source material s which permit th e reconstructio n of agrarian practice s i n medieval England ar e quite unparalleled an d for the period around 130 0 are particularly rich. The two principal sources used in th e Feeding the Cit y project are inquisition post mortem extents

Figure 4: The 'Feedin g the City' project study area.

124 Food

an d Eating in Medieval Europe

(hereafter IPMs) and annual demesne account rolls. Both sources relate to demesne land s held by lay or ecclesiastical lords and d o not directly reveal the agricultura l practices of small landowners and peasant s who cultivated approximatel y two-thirds of all arable land. 23 However, it is assumed tha t agraria n pattern s identified withi n th e demesn e secto r may be taken as broadly diagnostic of the rural economy as a whole. IPM extents relate to the holdings of deceased, lay, tenants in chief of the crown and record th e amount and value of the principal land types and othe r resource s o f each o f the lord' s holding s (typically , bu t no t invariably, a manor). They quantif y th e arable , pasture , meado w and woodland and assig n a value to each acre as well as recording the presence of mills, fishponds, dovecotes and vegetable gardens. During the two stages of the projec t data have been collecte d from just over 2100 IPM extents relating to manors and holdings in the study area.24 The second sourc e used b y the projec t is the demesne accoun t roll, which again survives in greatest numbers from th e fourteenth century. These accounts, rendered annually by manorial bailiffs, provide in more or less standardized form highly detailed informatio n on most aspects of agricultural practice, acreage under different crops, crop yields, disposal of crops by sale, transfer t o household fo r consumptio n o r use by the manorial workforce. Data are given concerning each livestock type kept on the manor, numbers of males and females, births, deaths and slaughters. Over 800 annual accoun t rolls have been used in th e tw o stages of the project.25 Analysis of the data from both IPM extents and demesne accounts has allowed a detailed picture of land use over a wide area to be built up, in the course of which some previously held assumptions have been given firm statistica l backing. For example, given the medieva l population's overwhelming reliance on grain-based calories, it has always been appreciated that in most parts of medieval England, arable was the most important
Campbell, Galloway, Keene and Murphy , A Medieval Capital, p . 17. Two databases have been compiled from the IPM extents. FTCI IPM database uses 1966 extents from th e period 1270-1339, and FTCII IPM database uses 168 extents and relates to the period 1350-80. Towards the en d o f the fourteenth century the extent s change in format and no longer include detailed land-use information. For a discussion of the methodolog y employe d in analysin g the extent s see B.M.S. Campbell, J.A. Galloway an d M . Murphy, 'Rura l Land-Us e in th e Metropolita n Hinterland , 1270-1339 : The Evidenc e o f Inquisitiones Post Mortem', Agricultural History Review, 4 0 (1992) , pp . 1-22. 25 Again the data have been organized into two databases The FTCI accounts database . uses 461 accounts for 204 manors during the period 1290-1315, and the FTCII accounts database use s 360 accounts for 14 1 manors during the period 1375-1400.
24 23

Feeding Medieval Cities: Some Historical Approaches 12


land use . The statistic s generated fro m analysi s of the IP M material sug gested i n fac t tha t a s much a s 75 per cen t o f agricultural lan d i n th e London region lay under the plough c. 1300, reflecting the impact of concentrated urba n deman d i n additio n t o th e need s o f a denselypopulated countryside . Demesne account rolls can be used to show how the arable land was divided between cultivation of bread grains, brewing grains, fodder grains and legumes . Pattern s i n th e cultivatio n of different arable crop s can frequently be linked to the varied demands of the metropolitan market . The city's agrarian hinterlan d di d not of course have uniform soils and terrain an d th e choic e o f which crop t o gro w was also influence d by environmental patterns. However, the patterns of arable farming which have emerge d a s a result o f the stud y of London's hinterlan d clearl y show that th e demand s o f a large cit y could profoundl y influence th e choice of crop grown, in some cases overriding environmental factors, in othe r case s encouragin g a n environmenta l predisposition. 26 Th e significant increas e i n the cultivatio n of brewing grains in parts of th e London regio n in the later fourteenth century is a good example of this feature.27 Spatial analysi s of grain cultivatio n has le d t o th e revisio n o f som e traditional views about th e medieval diet. One o f these is that in southeast England , an d particularl y in London , wheate n brea d wa s almost universally consumed b y the fourteenth century , and therefor e that, in these areas , ther e wa s little demand fo r the cheape r brea d mad e fro m rye and mixtures of rye and wheat known as maslin and mancorn.28 The discovery tha t a significan t cluste r o f manors clos e t o th e metropoli s and strung out along the navigable River Thames devoted sizeable acreages to rye and maslin cultivation suggests that, in fact, the early fourteenthcentury cit y generated a substantial demand fo r thes e cheape r brea d grains. This combination o f land-use data with evidence from Londo n sources leads t o the conclusio n that , at its medieval populatio n peak , many of the city's inhabitants could not afford t o eat wheaten bread an d that ther e wa s a sizeable market for cheaper brea d grains. 29 A related
26 A town ha d t o achieve a certain size , probably over 10,000 , before i t could mark edly affect th e agricultur e of its region; see Kowaleski, Local Markets, p . 323. 27 See Jame Galloway, 'Driven by Drink? Ale Consumption and the Agrarian Economy s of the Londo n Region, c . 1300-1400', above, Chapte r 6. 28 N.S.B. Gras , Th e Evolution o f the English Corn Market fro m th e Twelfth t o the Eighteenth Century (reprinte d London, 1926) , p. 37. 29 Campbell, Galloway , Keen e an d Murphy , A Medieval Capital, pp . 26 , 121-23 , 164-66.

126 Food

an d Eating in Medieval Europe

example of urban demand influencing crop specialisation can be found in the hinterland of medieval Paris. There the growth in popular demand for chea p wine led t o th e replacemen t in man y areas of high qualit y cepagesby mauvais gamay, which produced an inferior wine but one which was affordable by poorer consumers. 30 Demesne accoun t rolls , a s mentione d above , contai n detaile d information on annual sales of manorial produce, which can help in identifying area s where crop specialisms were primarily market-led. Methods employed include assessin g the frequenc y with which different crops were sold, comparing proportions sol d and measurin g the contribution o f income from sales of each crop to overall manorial sales income.31 Applying these measures to the products of pastoral farming is , however , less straightforward . Animal s were kep t o n demesnes fo r a variety of differen t purpose s an d wer e no t alway s destined fo r consumptio n whe n the y were sold. Th e exceptio n t o this rul e wa s the adul t porke r (castrate d pig) , which was virtually always sold for food. Animal products such as milk, butter and chees e were also destined for fairly rapid consumption. A key tool in determin ing th e spatia l dimensio n i n demesn e sale s of thes e product s ha s been compute r mapping . The data contained in demesne account s are well-suited to mapping, relating as they do to discrete and identifi able places. Mapping those manors with above-average income from sales o f pigs, for example , ha s reveale d th e possibl e impact of th e metropolitan market, while mapping those manors which specialised in dairy produce point s to the crucial importance of cheap (usuall y water) transpor t linkin g demesne an d market. 32 While it is clear that the demands of London did influence agriculture in its hinterland, a concern of the project has been to assess the degree to which this influence was manifest in ways consonant with the predictions of geographical location theory. This body of theory holds that urban hinterlands will tend to develop zones or regions of specialized production as producers adopt the forms of land use which are most profitable in any

'Avant-propos', Franco-British Studies, 20 (1995), p. 3. B.M.S. Campbell, 'Measuring the Commercialisatio n of Seigneurial Agriculture , c. 1300', in R.H. Britnell and B.M.S. Campbell, eds, A Commercialising Economy .-England, 1086-1300 (Manchester, 1995), pp. 132-93. 32 M. Murphy andJ.A Galloway, 'Marketing Animals and Animal Products in London's Hinterland, circa 1300', Anthropozoologica, 1 6 (1992), pp. 93-100.


Rural Settlement and Land-Use: An Essay o n Location (1962).H. C. . 117-44 . but would not fundamentally change thei r logical order. 35 . Similarly .34 The Feedin g th e Cit y project has drawn particularly on th e work of the nineteenth-centur y Germa n theoris t J. certain patterns have emerged which are indeed explicable in terms of von Thiinen' s theory . vo n Thiinen . pp. See for exampl e F. wh o constructed an idealized model of the pattern of farming systems likely to be generate d b y a large centra l market. The presenc e of other. 'L'approvisionnemen t des villes de 1'Allemagn e occidentale jusqu'au XVIe siecle'. given location. o n manor s within a few miles of th e city . trans. and were profitable activities. Wartenberg (Oxfor d an d Ne w York.M. Hall. 1966). firewoo d an d charcoal sales were significant components of manorial income close to 33 34 M. in L'approvisionnement de s villes. 35 The mode l predict s th e emergence o f a serie s o f concentric zones characterized b y differen t patterns and intensities of land use (see Figure 5). th e perishabl e product s o f market gardening and dairying assumed importance. Von Thiinen assume d that his town was situated.33 It is only in recent years that historians have attempted to test the relevance of these theories to the medieval economy. at the centr e o f a level plain of uniform fertility . in isolation. ed. Chisholm. During the course of the research on agriculture in the London region. P.Feeding Medieval Cities: Some Historical Approaches 127 Figure 5: Simplified representation of Von Thimen's model of land-use zones. Thus . Irsigler. smaller markets and of geographical features both facilitating and impedin g transpor t would of course distor t th e predicte d zones . crossed by no navigable rivers or canals. Vo n Thiinen's Isolated State: An English Edition of Der Isolierte Stoat by Johann Heinrich von Thiinen.

36 However. a n awareness of the prediction s of location theory has proved to be an important interpretative too l for the historian of urban provisioning. its cost. p .H. while wheat. 1300 hal f th e grai n produce d b y the demesne sector in th e Londo n regio n was distributed via the market . were met throughout th e medieval period by a complex system of food farms involving manors up to forty miles distant from London. such as the means of transport chosen. 69 (1858). 74. 36 . Camde n Society .000 persons. unmediated link s with the capita l were W.37 However. Thi s i s particularly true of accounts for manors in th e London region . Gal loway. and i n location s with ready access to chea p wate r transport . ol d series. With grain crops a definite tendency is evident for bulkier and low-value crops suc h a s oats an d ry e t o be grow n close t o th e city . formal arrangements whereby food was sent in from their country estates. perhaps 10. where rates of market participation were conspicuously high. wa s more o f a speciality on manor s a t a further remove. 37 It ha s bee n calculate d fo r exampl e tha t c . Hale . However. the rural evidence would suggest that such direct . the majorit y o f urban dweller s had n o suc h ability to bypass the market and therefor e trad e prevaile d over alternative methods of supply. Th e Domesday o f St Paul's o f the Year MCCXII. even on manors where all surpluses were diverted to meet the consumptio n needs of the lord's household. Campbell. Although the fit between theory and historical evidence is by no means perfect. or the number of carts and draught animals involved. When towns grew beyond a certain size. Sales to London merchant s as well as direct selling in the capita l are documented in the account rolls. A Medieval Capital. majo r religiou s institution s base d i n th e citie s developed regular. When the household was situated in or near London this information is particularly valuable. enlightening details can be found concerning the movement of goods from manor to household. Keene and Murphy . Demesne accoun t roll s frequently provide valuable material o n th e marketing and transport of agricultural produce and highlight the variet y of method s use d b y producers o f foo d t o marke t surpluses . they began t o exceed th e provisionin g capacities of local trade . whose hig h pric e greatl y increased th e are a ove r whic h i t coul d b e transported. for example. The provisionin g needs of the canons of St Paul's Cathedral. ed. I t was still possible for some tow n dwellers to obtain supplie s of foodstuffs b y direct provisioning . Complex and extensive distributive systems had t o evolve in order to transport th e produce o f the countryside into cities as large as medieval London. in general.128 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe London.

. ed. Memorials o f London an d London Life (London . .R. These records also suggest that in fourteenth century London such direct links between consumer and producer were probably lessenin g i n importance . 1860). 1899-1912).. 38 . where suburba n gardeners came to sell fruit and vegetables and bakers from nearby small towns came to sell bread. Calendar of Early Mayor's Court Rolls. Liber custumarum. idem. Calendar of the Letter-Books Preserved among the Archives of the Corporation of London at the Guildhall: Letter-Books A-L (London .T. AD 1364-1381 (Cambridge. Calendar o f Plea and Memoranda Rolls. Sharpe.38 It is reasonable to assume therefore that a large propor tion of agrarian produce entered into commerce via these local outlets. Over 400 places within the study area had acquired market rights by th e middl e o f the fourteent h century . 1924). I t i s possible t o documen t th e emergence an d growt h o f groups o f specialize d traders base d i n th e capital. idem. Urban evidence corroborates and augments the picture produced by the rura l evidence . AD 1298-1307 (Cambridge. 39 H. One approac h adopted by the project has been to assemble evidence regarding the activities and interests of occupational group s within the city involved in the food and fue l trade . Riley. linking capital and hinterland . Judicial an d administrativ e records o f th e cit y of London are highly informative on the practic e o f trade by Londoners and by those who came into the capital from the countryside. who acted as middlemen. in Munimenta Gildhallae Londoniensis. ed. taxation returns and chronicles . but frequently operating in the countryside. This was in large part due to the growth and increasing sophistication of the network of local markets and fairs within the Londo n region. ed. ii. The importanc e o f certain markets is shown by their repeated appear ance as places of sale in account rolls. idem. ed. So far this has been undertake n fo r the London 'blad - The project 'Market Networks and the Metropolis' at the Centre for Metropolitan History is examining the rol e of small towns and othe r market s in the circulatio n of agrarian produce i n the London region . judicial and administrative records (both municipal and central). Henley-on-Thames in Oxfordshir e for grain and th e fairs of Kingston in Surrey and Uxbridge in Middlesex for livestoc k are among these prominent centres . It has been possibl e to compile some prosopographical database s fro m municipa l regulations.. pts 1 and 2 (Roll s Series..39 Municipal regulations document th e ways in which producer an d consumer cam e into direct contact in the metropolitan marke t places. 1929). ed. 1868) . a network of markets which provided nea r at hand outlets for the producer o f agricultural surpluse s and served to channel the produce of the countryside towards the centres of consumption. R.Feeding Medieval Cities: Some Historical Approaches 12 9 in the minority.

'Les contentieux en matiere d'approvisionnement. there was a particula r concentratio n o f woodmongers' interest s i n Surrey . The highly detailed documentatio n available on agricultural practices in London's hinterland i n the fourteenth century is probably unmatched elsewhere in Europe . Franco-British Studies. However . 41 Within the city the woodmongers held property and pursued business activities in various riverine locations. the fundamental features of the approac h Campbell. thereby confirming the impression produced by the agrarian evidenc e tha t th e productiv e capacit y of th e hinterlan d wa s sufficient t o fee d bot h it s own population an d tha t o f a city of betwee n 80. of course.42 Despite these differences. d'apre s le s sources normatives' . 42 See C. Keene and Murphy. especially in Kingston-upon-Thames and Ham. . d'apres le s registres d u parlemen t d e Paris' . Galloway. Keene and Murphy . This frequently corroborates evidence provided by the demesn e accounts. Work is underway on the butchers . ibid. pp .130 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe ers' o r cornmongers an d th e cit y woodmongers. pp.000 and 100. B. it has been possibl e t o draw together informatio n about som e ninety individuals involved in London's woo d market between the years 127 5 and 1375. pp..00 0 persons. Le Maresquier-Kesteloot. 40 For example. 'L'approvisonnement de Paris en poisson de mer aux XLVe et XVe siecles. 87-107. Auzary-Schmaltz. Henley-on-Thame s emerge s as the singl e most important place of resort for London cornmonger s and the only place outside London where they owned granaries. 69-84. 452 . Examining th e activitie s o f th e well-documente d earl y fourteenth century cornmongers has provided valuable evidence for the organization of the grain trade within the city and also for the extent of the city's grain provisioning zone. Y . largely dependent upon the nature and survival of source materials. Pari s fo r example. which emerge from othe r sources a s important entrepot s for the fuel trade . A Medieval Capital. 2 0 (1995) . ibid. Galloway. Bourlet. 'L'approvisionnement de Paris en bois (XIVe-XV e siecles)'. are extremely rich in records on the regulation of trade. The London woodmongers formed a less wealthy and influential group than the cornmongers and are therefore less well documented. p. making it possible to reconstruct many aspects of the distributiv e system in a way that it not possible for medieval London. All the most significant interests of the cornmongers lay within the counties of the study area. 41 40 . 5-22 . underlining the importance of the Thames in the supply of fuel to the capital. 'Fuelling the City'. Outside the city. 49-68 . The degre e t o which the method s use d t o study medieval Londo n and it s region ca n b e use d fruitfull y elsewher e are. However. pp. the archive s o f som e Europea n cities .

Medieval townspeople were largely dependent o n the labours of others for their daily food and drink. . ar e methods which can be employed i n the study of the provisioning o f other citie s and o f London itsel f at differen t tim e periods . The systematic interrogation of a range of urban and rural documentary sources i n orde r t o tes t th e plausibilit y o f independently-develope d consumption estimates . The stud y of medieval London's food supply has identified several lines of enquiry which ca n now be take n further by members o f the projec t team an d others.Feeding Medieval Cities: Some Historical Approaches 13 1 adopted in the 'Feedin g the City' project should hav e wider applicability. and its implications are as yet far from exhausted. the impact of that dependency upon wider economic developmen t was great. and th e use of geographical model s to predict the emergenc e o f specialised system s of production withi n urban hin terlands.

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relating to the estates of Alice de Bryene. SC 6/1249/ 1-10. s I am gratefu l to Martha Carli n an d Joel Rosentha l for their encouragement . apart from far m and woodland of nearly 900 acres. a s recorded i n th e Domesda y survey of 1086 . 1412-13 ffiona Swabe y Acton i s a small village in Suffolk . som e twent y miles north of the ol d Roman town of Colchester and twent y miles south of Bury St Edmunds. SC 6/991/1-6. The lan d i s flat and fertile . 19. will be published by Sutton Publishing in 1999 . Acton bailiffs' reports . The name derives from the Anglo-Saxon Aketon. SC 6/858/16-20. and stewards' accounts for Dorset.9 The Household of Alice de Bryene. an average of fortyfive meal a day. Acton's population o f aroun d seventy . where there was also a well an d a windmill. SC 6/1003/6-9. Sometimes. SC 6/989/1-18. During this one year daily totals varied greatly. My book. has rise n t o more tha n a thousand people today. Medieval Gentlewoman: Life i n a Gentry Household i n th e Later Middle Ages. SC 6/1002/ 10-13. an d 50 0 at th e beginnin g o f this century. receivers'. 1 . SC 6/1297/22. See PRO.21. SC 6/991/1. 20. bailiffs'. A small stream ran throug h th e enclose d grounds. meaning an oak enclosure or settlement. Evidence from a few extant bailiffs' report s suggests that in th e fifteent h century . SC 6/842/25. SC 6/990/1-21. Below is a list of all the Compotu s Roll s in the Publi c Recor d Office. SC 6/1245/9-17. mostly medium t o heav y clay. as well as a large dwelling house surrounded by a moat with a great hall. focusing on the life and time s of Alice de Bryene. the first visible landmark is the square bell tower of the church . bakehouse and separate chapel. SC 6/1247/3-5. 21. SC 6/989/6.1 From Michaelma s 141 2 to Michaelmas 1413 Alice de Bryene served more than 16. an early Victorian farmhouse on the site of the original manor . though barely a vestige of that ancient forest now remains. brewhouse. watered by several small streams and suitable for both arable and pastoral farming. 6 and an undated steward's account. DL/430/6904. S C 6/1297/22. Gloucestershire and Eas t Anglia: SC 6/833/12. I t i s still a working farm. London. SC 6/1007/3. the manor comprised numerous barns and stables. Approaching Acton from th e south .50 0 meals at her Acton manor house. A few minutes' walk from ther e across the fields is Acton Hall.

1948. Vincent Redstone. such as those of Elizabeth de Burgh. The latte r is the subjec t o f an article by C. They relate primarily to the quantities o f food serve d each day . an d assiste d officials with future budgeting. Keeping such accounts also helped deter household servant s from thef t and carelessness. 'The Household Accounts of Elizabeth Berkeley. C 47/4/8a & b. Entries are prefaced with the date an d a list of guests.134 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe as at the New Year's feast. many of whom came severa l times. About three times a week the bailiff s o f one o f her adjacen t manors cam e t o eat. 2 . 'Ralp h Cromwel l and Hi s Household').4 Alice's are much more modest. Transactions o f the Bristol and Gloucestershire Archaeology Society. Some of her guests were eminent men. The forme r has been discussed by E. 70 (1951) . In addition. 4 Two other accounts worth looking at are those of Lady Margaret Cromwell. Not e is made that wine and al e were served . 1992-93) . man y of whom are named . Woolgar. visits from mor e tha n on e hundred assorte d casua l labourers and 120 other unnamed guests . including goldsmiths ' account s an d travelling expenses. a fragment o f her househol d account s originall y edited by Vincent Redstone i n 1931. This information come s from Alice de Bryene's Household Book . and Elizabeth . thoug h n o quantit y is specified. followed by the daily purchases whic h supplemente d thes e provisions . Ross. where The Household Book of Alice deBryene. Price (unpublishe d thesis . 3 C. Household Accounts from Medieval England ( 2 vols. at other times only three were invite d to join he r an d thos e o f her househol d who were present on that particular day. 1984). th e Institut e of Historical Research. pp. Oxford. Meals also had to be provided for the two dozen members of Alice's household . there were also about fift y clerical an d religiou s visitors. Universit y o f London. as did th e maidservants and various estate workers. more tha n 30 0 people cam e to dine. a few decades earlie r tha n Alice's. ever y large lay or ecclesiastical household seem s to have kept similar records. Provender sup plied t o the horses in the stables and the total sum of purchases. Countess of Warwick. 1420-22 .M. Their primary purpose wa s to record th e dail y expenditure o f victuals by the steward i n charge of the overall managemen t o f the household. 1420-21'. whose wives and childre n visited as well. Lady of Clare. ed. enabled the detection o f corruption an d mismanagement. 141718. The M S is at the PRO. countess of Warwick. A pantry account follows with the numbe r of loaves delivered to the table . 81-105 . Then there are details of meat and fish sent from the kitchens. Suffolk Institute of Archaeology and Natural History (2n d edn . nearly 200 boon worker s during th e harves t season. othe r visitor s are described by their occupations or from where they came. are very extensive and cover all aspects of housekeeping. 2 Alice was not unusua l i n keeping such accounts . 3 Some accounts that have survived.

Alice's household an d guests enjoyed an average daily mess of one two-poun d loaf of bread an d at least three and a half pints of ale. with an equivalent amount in th e west country. It must have been throug h Waldegrave's acquaintanc e wit h Guy . 5 Before lookin g a t specific details o f Alice's hospitality it may be use ful t o mak e a fe w comments abou t he r househol d economy . University of Chicago Library. Such hospitality must have been the norm in most gentry households in th e late r middl e ages . Th e evidenc e come s no t onl y from Alice' s Household Book . in 1457 with no surviving issue. Soon afte r her mothe r remarried Si r Richard Waldegrave.bu t tha t i s another story . age d ove r seventy-five . The surviva l of so many of these record s is no mere accident. Alice was probably born a t the Acton manor in Suffolk aroun d 1360 . a s well a s a few compotus roll s deposite d a t th e Departmen t o f Specia l Collections . followed shortly by the deat h o f her father. 1412-13 13 5 relevant. a formidabl e an d versatile statesman . All available records appear t o have been take n into Chancery and now shed light on Alice de Bryene's dinner guest s in 1412-13. Figures ar e also given of the household brewing and baking. A brass commemorates her burial place in Acton church. more than a dozen varieties of fresh fish and half a dozen types of shellfish. .The Household o f A lice de Bryene. complet e eac h entry . Avice . On her mother's death in 1406 her entire patrimony in Essex and Suffolk totalle d over 3000 acres. tha t Alice's wedding was arranged wit h his eldes t son. as well as the traditional 5 PRO. which ende d wit h Guy' s prematur e deat h eleve n year s later . fraud. E 301/45/13. where she also founded a chantry that survived until the Reformation. an eminent courtier and politician. more than a pound o f meat a day. Lord Bryan . countess of Wiltshire. What is relevant here is that Alice did not remarry and sometim e after her grandmother's death in 1391 she returned from Dorset to East Anglia to farm her estates. which took place at least once a week. On the death of Alice's great-granddaughter. property tha t was her marriag e jointure from Sir Guy. forgery and a well-documented family quarrel. but als o from ove r eighty bailiffs' report s no w in th e Public Recor d Offic e relatin g t o he r variou s manors. as well a s Alice's long widowhood in Suffol k . around 1375 . the year her grandfathe r died. Th e subsequent history centred aroun d th e devolution of the Bryan estates -with burglary. Two daughters survived this marriage. Chantry Certificates. with wine for he r social peers. there was a property dispute tha t took thirty years to resolve. She die d i n 1435 . Sir Robert de Bures. Sir Guy Bryan.

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dried an d smoke d fish, plus a plentiful suppl y of dairy produce. Game birds were also on the menu, the food was moderately spiced and consumption o f suga r ver y low.6 Adding together th e estimate d value of far m produce, mea t and grain it would appear tha t Alice spent about 65 per cent of her household expenditur e o n food and drink. Discounting the value of home produce consumed and the cost of producing it, it seems she spent around 40 per cent of her total income of about £400 running the household, a figure that accords wit h the average s worked out for the period b y Christopher Dyer and Christopher Given-Wilson. 7 Let u s now return t o Alice's table an d thos e 16,50 0 meals. First we should dispel the thought that Alice wa a merry widow with an insatiable s appetite for company. There i s evidence that she did enjoy herself an d that others enjoyed her company too, but that was not the main purpose of her hospitality. Nor should we conclude that such largesse was a result of charitable intentions. There are indications of her dispensing alms in the sense of food or grain, but not a t dinner; late r we shall look at one example o f bread actuall y distributed fro m he r table . And we cannot presume tha t Alice kept open house ; far from it . Guest lists appears t o have bee n carefull y planned . Traditionall y meal s wer e serve d fo r convenience to diners in pairs; on onl y fifteen occasions in 141 3 were there a n odd numbe r o f guests. Again that year very few people visited the manor who might literally have knocked on her doo r i n the hop e of a meal, and one of them is specifically named in English (in the Latin accounts) as a wayferour, while another is called an extraneoor foreigner.8 So who were Alice's dinner guests, and wh y was she feeding them? We can start with the workers, both casual and permanent estate staff, since they comprised th e largest proportion o f Alice's guests. Some can be identified from th e bailiffs' reports , others by their trades. On 15 , 16 and 17 February, for example, two carpenters engaged to make a plough dined at the manor. Two aspects should be considered here . First, the rate for this type of job, tha t of a craftsman or skilled labourer, as itemThe al e was fairly weak and may not have been drun k by all, but wine was regularly served. See Christophe r Dyer , Standards o f Living in th e Later Middle Ages: Social Change in England, c . 1200-1520 (Cambridge, 1984), pp. 57 , 58, 63, for details of the compara tive strengths of ale and an analysis of meat and spice consumption i n Alice's household. 7 Christopher Given-Wilson , The English Nobility i n the Late Middle Ages (London, 1987), p. 93. 8 Most likely the wayferour wa s a wayfarer, a medieval back-packer, but we cannot b e certain. He could also have been a wafer-maker, like Langland's Haukin , in Th e Vision of Piers Plowman, who represente d Activ e Life. Othe r passers-b y included tw o 'sisters' , travelling from Canterbury; there is no indication whethe r or not they were nuns.

The Household o f Alice de Bryene, 1412-13 13


ized i n various compotu s roll s relating t o Alice's estates, was 4d. a day with a meal; in othe r words, dinne r was a part of the remuneration. 9 Secondly, it was also a practical measure, for the carpenters could hardly have got on their bikes, so to speak, and gone down the road for a snack, or home for a quick sandwich. The othe r thin g we may notice i s that, thoug h gues t list s were care fully planned, little attempt was mad to separate the social classes. Alice's e sister-in-law Lady Waldegrave was also staying at the mano r a t this time with a son, maidservant, squire and various household members . In fact 16 February appears to have bee n a feast day , since a swan - th e pin nacle of Alice's culinary offerings-was on the menu. The more honoured guests woul d hav e sa t with Alice at th e hig h tabl e an d th e lesse r fol k lower down . But eating at Acton was apparently stil l a communal affair , a custom which, writers like William Langland remarke d a few decades earlier, was gradually disappearing. 10 It is important t o note this since, despite th e obviou s visibl e sign s o f a hierarchy wit h the lad y and he r peers eating together, probably literally above the other guests, the ritual of breaking bread i n th e hal l woul d hav e reinforce d a sense o f com munity bonding, added t o which courtesy dictated tha t small helping s of delicacies be sent down to less honoured guests. 11 Another practical reason for Alice's hospitality is that meeting at the dinner tabl e migh t hav e bee n th e onl y way people coul d actuall y sit down together , exchang e view s and d o business. The frequen t visits of
Th e Household Book, pp. 39 , 40; 4d. per da y appears t o have been th e usual rate for professional craftsmen working at the manor. Many of the anonymous visitors, for example the variou s 'boys ' who came fro m the nearb y villages and were hired to act as huma n scarecrows in the fields after th e seed was sown, were paid only Id., but were also fed at Alice's table . See Th e Household Book, pp. 6 , 37, 44, 55, 58, 78, and PRO , Acton bailiffs ' Reports, S C 6/989/10, 17, 18, for terms of employment and paymen t of casual labourers under Minutiae. Rates were not alway s consistent, however , and women were always paid less than men. In 1425 Margaret Fouler, relative of one of Alice's shepherds, received 1-d. for helping Edward Christmas wit h the thatching; h e got 4d. for the job. However , they were both fe d at the manor . PRO, SC 6/1249/5. 10 William Langland, Will's Vision o f Piers Plowman, ed. E. Kirk and J. Anderson (Ne w York and London, 1990) , p. 91: 'Unhappy is the hall, every day of the week,/Where the Lord an d Lad y have no liking to sit./ Now has each rich man a rule to eat by himself/ In privat e parlou r t o avoi d poor men/ O r i n a chamber with a chimney-corner, an d leave the chief hall empty/ That was made for men to eat their meals in.' 11 In th e thirteent h centur y Robert Grosseteste advised his patron, th e countes s of Lincoln, 'to order tha t your dish be so refilled an d heaped especiall y with light course s that you may courteously giv e from your dish to right and left to all at the high table and to whom else it pleases you': D. Oschinsky, ed., Walter of Henley an d Other Treatises on Estate Management (Oxford, 1971), p. 403.

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the bailiffs, auditors, trustees, estate workers and maidservants from Acton and Alice's other manor s illustrate this. If Alice had project s to discuss, or wanted, for example , t o make a new appointment o r rewar d har d work, what better way than over a meal? Though sh e may have had th e opportunity of seeing her worker s in the meadows and pasture s of her estates, i t would no t hav e been th e same a s a discussion a t the dinne r table. Besides, eating itself is a great social leveller and often eases negotiations. Sometimes it may have been the only way she could make contac t with one o f her employees . From 1 0 to 1 4 April 141 3 a man calle d John Lytleton was a guest at Acton manor. He coul d hardl y have come just for the day, since he was bailiff o f Alice's Oxenhall mano r i n Gloucestershire , som e 30 0 miles away. From th e fe w extant bailiffs' report s from Oxenhal l w e know he made this journey ever y year, bringing cas h from th e rent s and profit s of the manor , togethe r with news of the estate. 12 He was not th e onl y official who came from far afield and therefore had a claim on Alice for bed as well as board. In November 1412 Morgan Gough, a former Bryan retainer from th e west country, came to stay for a week. It seems he also worked for Alice, probably as receiver for her Gloucestershire and Dorset properties, a rathe r superio r gentlema n a s we may deduce fro m th e special dishe s served ever y day of hi s visit. Hi s arrival , not lon g afte r Michaelmas, suggests ther e was business o n the menu a s well as food.13 Occasionally the specifi c reaso n fo r on e o f Alice's invitations is very clear. Many of the tenants from some of her larger properties appear to have been aske d to dinner onc e a year. On 2 6 and 2 7 February and 1 and 2 March 1413 John Talmache wa s invited to the manor. Hi s father, who had rented land in Acton for more than twenty years, had just died. Obviously a new lease ha d t o be negotiated ; Talmach e wa s a tenant of some social standing an d hi s annual ren t o f 28s. was not a paltry sum. But the fac t tha t h e twic e stayed the nigh t suggests there wa s more t o these meetings than routin e organization , as may have been th e cas e with the other tenants: time to commiserate, perhaps and to offer som e sympathy, as well as to do business. 14
Th e Household Book, pp. 54-55 ; and PRO , SC 6/858/16-20 and S C 6/1247/3-5: Oxenhall's bailiffs' accounts .


Ibid., pp. 42-44, 47. PRO, Acton bailiffs' reports , SC 6/989/1-18: John Talmache was first invited for Sunday lunch just a week after his father died. It appears he and Alice may have been distantl y related, since ther e is a seal o n a contemporary document at Helmingham Hall, the family' s ancestral home, that bears the arms of both Waldegrave and Talmache: E.D. Tollemache, The Tollemaches of Helmingham and Ham (1949), p. 29.


The Household Book, pp. 16-17 .

The Household o f Alice de Bryene, 1412-13 13


It was not unusual for guests to sleep at the manor as well as to have dinner, especiall y during th e festive season. However, we may occasionally question the motives of some of Alice's overnight guests and consider her entertainmen t in a different light . Sir Robert Corbet , a sixty-yearold widower with an estate just a few miles away, visited Alice on five different occasions , four time s stayin g the night , whil e enjoying suppe r and extras.15 Corbet had substantial properties in several counties, acquired through two well-planned marriages, and had been a member of Parliament for both Wiltshire and Hertfordshire. But it is unlikely that politics was the chief topic of his dinner conversation . Sir Robert, it seems, was prospecting fo r a new wife. Two years later he was elected to represent Suffolk i n the April and Novembe r parliaments but spen t mos t of the year in Shropshire. It was here that he successfully wooed his third wife, another rich widow like Alice.16 Sir Robert Corbet was not th e onl y politician t o call. In 141 3 at least half a dozen members of parliament were invited to Acton manor.17 No doubt they were interested i n Alice's views and opinion s a s a wealthy resident and landowner, and they were conscious of the patronage sh e could dispense. It would also have benefited her t o keep in touch with them and with the latest developments. Furthermore , the y would have provided her with stimulating company. Evidence of Alice's social standing is scant, but th e fac t that one da y an unnamed squire of the newly crowned Henr y V came t o visit suggests tha t sh e als o ha d friend s i n courtly circles.18 If her politicall y minded dinne r guest s helped Alic e keep i n touc h with government , the n th e visitin g churchmen woul d hav e provide d her with all the gossip of the countryside , omnes rumores patriae. Clerical and religious visitors add up to over 20 per cent of the total for the year.
ad noctem et com 'and ad cenam et com'. Companagium was anything eate n with bread, including fruit, vegetables and meat , as well as raisins, almonds and figs. 16 The Household Book, pp. 6 , 7, 41, 58, 78,100. J.S. Roskell, L. Clark and C . Rawcliffe , eds, History o f Parliament: House o f Commons, 1386-1421 (Stroud, 1992) , pp. 654—56 , fo r a resume o f Corbet's lif e an d career . 17 Apart from Corbet they were Sir Andrew Boteler , M P for Essex; Sir Joh Howard , n MP fo r Essex , Cambridgeshir e an d Suffolk ; John Doreward , M P for Essex ; Si r John Ingoldisthorpe, MP for Suffolk ; an d Willia m Rokewode , anothe r Suffolk MP. Possibly Alice's son-in-law Robert Lovell also visited in 1412; he became MP for Dorset in 1421. For detail s of their careers , se e Roskell et al., History o f Parliament. 18 Th e Household Book, p. 66 . Much of the evidenc e o f Alice's courtly connections is circumstantial but, judging by a letter he wrote her around 1393, Richard II knew Alice quite well. PRO , S C 1/51/24-iv; and Edit h Rickert, 'Document s and Letters : A Leaf from a Fourteenth-Century Lette r Book' , Modern Philology, 25 (1917), pp. 249-55.

who actually died before Alice was born. traditionally a fish day. Despite their long journey the Slapton priests only stayed one night.. C. the date of the translatio n of St Augustine's relics. ed. 19 Apar t fro m specifi c religiou s festivals . On 1 1 Ma y Alice invited four loca l ladie s for wha t must have been a rather specia l occasion . the wif e of a tenant. The friars may well have left with bulging purses and full stomachs. wives of two members of her retinue. Hi s reputation a s a wise and piou s man ha d precipitated th e manifestation of numerous miracles near his tomb and he wa s canonized i n 1401. and of her mother seven year s before. Th e Oxford Dictionary o f Saints (2n d edn. whethe r traditional or personal. has 11 May . p. It was the day dedicated to St Petronella. one of Alice's distant relatives. p. 68. Such were the visits of the Austin friars from nearb y Clare on 2 8 February. 21 Everyon e loves a stor y about a moder n hero an d i t is even possibl e tha t th e Norwic h friars ha d me t John o f Bridlington. 20 Entertainment was sometimes more importan t tha n th e mea l itself.. 70. when prayers were said for Lady Elizabeth Bryan. Cheney. 21 Ibid. they came to celebrate anniversaries. all the other male guests were labourers except for two friars who came from Norwich . D. fifty-three years previously. but nevertheless Alice purchased butter and cream t o provide some exotic sauces. Th e latter volume has 11 March as the date of the translation of St Joh of Bridlington's reln ics. 1989) . The y were her cousi n Margare t Sampson. Apart from th e rector of Withersfield who was a house guest and the unidentifiable John Blake. and th e tw o Agnes Whytes. pp. we may consider Alice's dinner invitations to her friends more in the light of an opportunity to satisfy their appetites for education . Farmer. 3 . They were there to commemorate with Alice the death of her father. many of the friars would have come questing for alms. both occasions being special dates in their liturgical calendars. In this instance.. paid a visit to Acton. 20 Ibid. for example. 19 . A Handbook of Dates for the Student of English History (London. On 3 1 May 1413 two priests cam e some 400 miles from th e Bryan chantry at Slapton in Devonshire to visit Alice.140 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe In some instances the reason for their invitations can be easily deduced as when. an Austin n canon who died i n 1379 . pp. London. curiosity and amusement than merely for a meal. but prepared apparently to sing for their suppers. 1991). 11 May was one o f the day s dedicated t o St Joh of Bridlington.. On 7 October 1412 and 1 0 June 141 3 two friars fro m th e neighbourin g tow n of Sudbury dined at the Acton manor. It was a Wednesday. and at the Annunciation. but Alice's household would also have been refreshe d by interesting discourse. which is more closely related to medieval sources. The Household Book. Alice's mother-in-law.R. ibid. 62. 49. She was a wealthy widow with manors of her ow n as well as property she inherited from her husband on his death in 1391.H. On 4 and 5 May Lady Joan Swinburne. while the former. 43. Isobel Chapman.

twelve geese. p. Though sh e must have been able to enjoy a very sumptuous life style. a chaplain. Roskell. Alice invited a dozen or so of her intimat e friends t o help her hos t a dinner for mor e tha n 30 0 tenants and 'othe r strangers. History o f Parliament. Everyone in the vicinity seems to have been invited and the tables were spread with two pigs. who appears to have lived up to his name. possibly the Lady Joa herself. one b y her name . ' Thi s descriptio n o f some o f her guest s suggests that on thi s particular day there was open house at Alice's manor. Here we may recognize one of the traditiona l aspects of medieval hospitality . ha d died the previous year. Fo r example . who came with her daughter.The Household o f Alice de Bryene. I hesitate to suggest that they were probably busy at home. togethe r wit h a harper. would at least have identified with each other. 23 The Household Book. goose and conies. four valets and two grooms. but this may have been the case. It appears Lady Swinburne may have been visitin g Suffolk i n orde r t o oversee the constructio n o f her late husband's and stepson's double brass and altar tomb at Little Horkesley. preparing sweetmeats . making garlands. 1412-13 14 1 A stepson. Sir Thomas Swinburne. though the purchase of eggs that day indicate that someone s in the party was vegetarian. tending their livestock and preparing thei r own family meals. son . This was Agnes Lavender. She and Alice n must have shared simila r experiences an d concern s and. for th e career s of Sir Robert and Si r Thomas Swinburne. just a few miles away. 26. or at least her tenant s were able to bring along their friends and families. two swans. Alice did not provide any festive food.tha t of social obligation.23 The New Year's feast was the busiest time of the social calendar. but we should notforget that this was aworking lunch. p. 22 She travelle d with a maidservant. leisure was not a fifteenthcentury concept and Lad y Swinburne's visit should no t be seen in th e nature of holiday. who once tried to oust her fro m he r inheritance. No doubt there was a great deal of extra washing and cleaning to be done before the New Year festivities. Clark and Rawcliffe . twenty-four capons. eve n if they were not old friends. 22 . Most of the women who came were tenants and ca n be identified fro m th e bailiffs ' reports . The company dined well on beef. also. even composing word games. on 2 9 December 141 2 at least eleve n ladie s wer e asked t o dinner . Women figure less in Alice's household accounts than men. bacon. 95 . two joints of mutton. mummeries and riddles. two squires. though they would have had much to talk about. setting up trestl e tables. a n unnamed fria r and Richard Scrivener. Obviously the preparation s fo r th e forthcoming New Year's feast would have been considerable: decorating the hall. When the y were invited to th e mano r i t was often t o hel p Alic e with extra work in th e household . But. Th e Household Book.

27 PRO. 25 24 . beef. Agnes Shepherd. It appears ther e was an annual gif t to three of the orders of friars who frequently came to dine: the Austin Friars of Clare. pp. Thoma s Grye. There is a fragment of another househol d accoun t for 1412 . ther e was also a harper ther e to help liven up the party. SC 6/1249/2. the Franciscan s from Babwell and the Dominicans from Sudbury. also printed b y V. 5. p. 27 and twice note was made of quantities of grain give n by Alice to help fun d th e repair of the bell tower at Acton church. from 2 9 March to 30 April. veal. . th e minimu m basic sustenance for one man for a couple of months. S C 6/989/8. of bread compare d t o the usua l proportion o f one loa f per dine r was sent ove r fro m he r bak e house. SC 6/989/8-11 SC 6/990/1 SC 6/1249/ and . 107. 3. Another traditiona l aspec t o f medieval social obligation wa s charity and th e giving of alms. which would have made thirty gallon s o f al e o r 12 5 two-pound loaves . SC 6/989/10. Bartholomew Hykyn and William Prat. a ful l barn mean t securit y for th e nex t twelv e months . varying between two and six quarters per year. 28. At Acton harvesting was done mostl y by boon worker s with some paid labour . the year both Alice's mothe r an d eldes t daughte r died . John Wafer . Acton bailiffs's reports. The late r occasion was in 1405-6 . suckling pig and whatever delicacy was made with twelve gallons of milk and spice from Alice's store cupboard. Ibid. 28 PRO Acton bailiffs' reports . They were Adam Blindman.. 17. Acton bailiffs' reports . 26 See PRO. One year the recipients of Alice's charity wer actually named. Redstone.. 56 . 13-15 and S C 6/1249/2. It is hardly surprising the n tha t th e harves t festiva l wa s an importan t celebration .142 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe seventeen conies. occasionally for barte r an d frequentl y as part o f an annua l wage . Maundy Thursday was the o day traditionally set aside for large-scale distributions and act s of charity. which makes it easy to identify e with thei r need s and indicate s furthermor e that they may have been destitut e rathe r than just needy . Durin g this Ibid. 1 SC 6/1245/15.24 Apart from th e entertainment tha t may have been provided a s a result of the labours of Alice's women friends a couple o f days earlier. All Alice's estate staf f receive d liverie s of grain commensurat e wit h thei r jobs. which may partly explain thi s second gift . I t was also use d fo r payment . 28 Corn was on of the most important commodities in the middle ages. e providing essentia l basi c nourishment . Paupers from the estate were also occasionally granted corn. On Maund y Thursday for this year a double quantity of bread was als supplied to the table. 25 She also made occasiona l grant s of grain.26 The quantities were hardly lavish. an average of four bushels each. 10. The onl y time we can be certain Alice gave away food from her table was o Maundy Thursdays when double the-quantity n .

at other times guests came to help Alice in the household and to PRO. wh o also receive d ale . His presence o n the rood scree n suggests that he was also one of Alice's personal saints. her far m overseer an d supervisor. Extr a mea t an d fish were commis sioned fro m the larders as well. jugs. but advisabl e to have a benefactor o n your side as well. It would seem that in most instances a meal at the manor preceded or was part of the business of household or estate management. th e date of the commemora tion o f the Purificatio n of the Virgin Mary. Where there are details of harvest feasts it is apparent tha t little expense was spared and new dishes. Connecticut. The Stripping of the Altars (New Haven. 18. p. 31 Th e Household Book. of which Alice was patron. it can be n o coincidenc e tha t sh e invited Thomas Malcher . SC 6/989/8. when all the candles that were to be used in mass throughout th e year were consecrated. Alice gave her estat e workers a penny on thi s day. spoons and cloth s were also purchased for the occasion. Not onl y was it essential to tak e steps to ward off misfortune in th e precarious world of agriculture. like most Christian festivals . Successful farming could not be entrusted to factors in the material world alone. 16-22. Stripping o f the Altars. St Walstan's day.31 This brief survey of some of Alice's guests who dined with her at Acton in 1412-1 3 should giv e us an ide a o f the motivatio n behind muc h of medieval hospitality. 200-5 . to enjoy some pigeons with her on 20 June. Duffy. 73. He was an eleventh-century prince who had renounced hi s claim to the throne and espoused a life of poverty as a reaper in Norfolk. to help them fulfil their financial obligations to the church. th e burning of candles at this time of year was believed to help drive away the evi l spirits that abounded i n winter. but als o in th e nature of a talisman or charm. 29 . pp. 13. One o f the saints depicted o n the late medieval roo d screen a t Foxearth church . Candlemas on 2 February. 1995). Whatever St Walstan touched was believed to be fruitful. was St Walstan. it was always wise to invoke a little extra help.The Household o f A lice de Bryene. A s patron of the harves t he enjoyed a substantial local following in East Anglia. 30 Eamon Duffy. 29 We should perhaps consider the provisions made for the harvest feast not onl y as an inducement o r rewar d for th e workers.10. Sometime s it was part of the overal l wage for a particular job o f work. 1412-13 14 3 time twice the usual quantity of bread was baked in Alice's ovens for the harvesters. In 140 1 the harvester s ate a whole cow at their feast and nin e years later butter was served with their bread. 20. was another popula r feast . for all parishioners were obliged t o process with a candle and offer a penny to the pries t at mass. pp.30 But. Candlemas als o had paga n and folklori c elements .

144 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe sell or buy goods. Focusing mor e specifically on the significance of food in the middl e ages. Ye t she wa s in many ways a s dependent o n the m fo r thei r service s as they were on her . Here we may see Alice as providing th e mean s for the sustenance an d livelihoo d o f numerous people . bu t also in the wider aspect of involvement with the outside world. And there seems to have been time for Alice to enjoy and entertain her persona l friends as well. we may consider Alice's hospitality in another light . food was th tie that bound e them all. Ofte n th e guest list suggests that a business meeting was in progress. The invitations to various churchmen can be viewed as connected not only with religious observance an d social obligation. that is principally grain an d stock . . Th e dail y dinners a t Acton mano r reinforced thi s sense of mutual dependency. beyond the narrow confines of the manor and small community of farmers. the dissemination o f information wa s an importan t feature o f their visits . Although the majority of her guests were connected in some way o another with her r estates. the ultimate goal was the production o f food. as much a servant a s she was served. Likewise the arriva l of various politicians indicates a concern t o kee p abreast of national affair s a s well as a natural identificatio n with a peer group.

see Paul Aebischer. the bloody Jacquerie agricultural . Taillevent's financial and socia l ris e throug h th e Valois kitchens ca n therefor e b e profitabl y examined a s a reflection . The social disrupt ion brough t abou t b y the Frenc h conflic t with England i n th e lat e fourteenth century . Weber Guillaume Tirel . pp. Taillevent died in his eighties. as well as the participants of the colloquia on medieva l cuisin e hel d a t Nice .1 is still celebrated today as one of the greatest French cooks in history. not a transcendence. 73-85. by however far Taillevent surpassed his contemporaries i n culinary skill. He is mentioned by foo historians d and cookboo k writer s in th e sam e reveren t tone s reserve d for MarieAntoine Careme and Auguste Escoffier. 1310-95). of the social conditions of the French court at the height of the Hundre d Years ' War. Montrea l an d SUN Y Stony Brook. outliving severa l o f his royal employers. Constance B. di t Taillevent (c . Roi des Queux: Taillevent and the Profession of Medieval Cooking A. Fortunately. as well as the subsequent centralization an d expan sion of the power of the Valois courts during Taillevent's lifetime. Tours. On the question of attribution of Le viandier to Taillevent. a meritorious fea t i n a n ag e which witnessed the ravages of the Black Death. Yet. We are now able to trace the connection s betwee n th e circumstance s surroundin g hi s employment and th e precipitou s events of fourteenth-century French society. 'Un manuscrit valaisan du Viandier attribue a Taillevent'. Thanks to this material and the recent research o f Terence Scully. 1 . 8 (1953). th e 'Empero r of Chefs'. Hieatt and Christopher Dyer. If we accept Pichon's chronology .10 Queu du Roi. he nevertheless remaine d a man of his age and culture. repute d autho r o f th e fourteenth-century cookbook Le viandier.S. it is now possible to make some educated guesses about the professional context within which Taillevent worked. several court document s an d charter s concernin g Taillevent's career have survived and were assembled byjerome Pichon and Georges Vicaire in their 189 2 edition o f Taillevent's Le viandier. Vallesia. provided civil servants such a s Taillevent with unprecedented opportunitie s fo r advancement.

As Scully has pointed out. 1967). reprinted.. p. the comte de Dunois. 5 Ibid. His tomb. Sylvie Martinet. 4 but ther e is no indication in surviving documents tha t an y of Taillevent's title s was hereditary o r tha t he was of noble birth . The Viandier of Taillevent: An Edition of All Extant Manuscripts (Ottawa . I strongly suspect that Taillevent himself came from a wealthy merchant o r haul bourgeois family.5 Of course. Th e dat e o f death. 2 . no.146 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe decline and th e incursions an d destructio n o f the English durin g th e Hundred Years ' War.3 Ecuyer. for example.. pp. In Taillevent's period we can fin d severa l cases of French bourgeoi s artisans who rose to social and financial prominence a s a result of their involvement in the Hundred Years' War. 260-61. however . 1988). p. Le viandier de Guillaume Tirel. noblemen often served and carve d a t the tabl e o f the king : at a feast given by the comt e de Foix between 1458 and 1461 . pp. and ofte n provide s a corrective to previous historical accounts. has bee n damaged. Hi (Paris. HistoiredelaviepriveedesFranfaisdepuis I'origine n de la nation jusqu'd no s jours. depict s a squire in full armou r with a coat of arms incorporating thre e cookin g pots . for example. 10. the comte d e la Marche and th e grand-senechal de Normandie. 3 Jerome Pichon an d George s Vicaire . 'pieces justificatives'. began e in the shoemaking trade and ended his career as treasurer of Normandy after 1436 . xix-xx . I n 134 9 Tailleven t was granted fund s by Phillipe VI to found a chapel adjacent to his house called 'Larchiere' . Charles V's contemporaries perceive d his court as one that Terence Scully. pp. Pierr Bailie. near Saint-Germain-en-Laye and now preserved in the museum there.2 According t o th e documentar y an d archaeologica l evidenc e col lected b y Pichon. eds. 6 Although ther e ar e numerous examples of noble children servin g as pages in the more prestigiou s houses in England and France. no. di t Taillevent (1892. It is only within the last twenty years that food and eating habits have been seriousl y studied a s social history. the fact 'that food is one of man's absolute necessities means that it must be a principal object of study by anyone who seriously hopes to understands th e history of humanity'. An examination of Taillevent's career reveals an intimate portrait of the courts of Charles V and Charles VI. 'pieces justificatives'. 1782). ed. was not necessaril y a hereditar y titl e in France. but this does not necessarily indicate noble status. the mattres-d'hostelviere the comte Gaston d e Foix. Geneva. 4. unfortunately . Taillevent attained th e rank of ecuyeror squire. 30. 304 . 4 Ibid. 6 Pierre Jea Baptiste le Grand d'Aussy. 264-65. Tailleven t is named o n hi s tom b an d i n on e documen t o f 1368 as a sergent d'armes.

although i t may have been though t tha t this would toughen the m for a late r militar y career. rathe r than by alliance or birth. xxx for a summary of Taillevent's documented titles . During the reigns of Charle s V (1364-80 ) an d Charle s V I th e bourgeoisi e constantl y attempted to assert the rights of their professional organizations against the prerogatives of the crown.9 It is difficult t o imagine someone o f aristocratic or eve n wealth y mercantile birt h assigne d t o thes e tasks . In 138 2 th e cit y of Paris rose against Charles VTs reimposition of the gabelle. leading to a number o f confrontations between th e kin g an d th e cit y of Paris. Charles V le Sage (Paris . p. The low-born counsellors of Charles's administration were scornfully dubbed 'les Marmousets 'by jealous noblemen. See p. After 136 6 roya l counsellors were chosen solel y by merit. wife o f Charles le Bel. 323 . p. p.Queu du Roi. 1948) . whose resources and military training were necessary in the continuing struggle against the English. 10 Alfred Gottschalk . 8 7 . a position ofte n hel d by a l gentilhomme. between cooking staf f an d servin g staff? 11 We know that th e perio d betwee n the reign s of Philippe VI (132850) an d Charle s V I (1380-1422 ) witnesse d explosiv e clas s conflict s which erupted i n the peasant revolt of 1358 and in several civil disruptions in Paris . 9 Le Grand d'Aussy . a dirty and ill-requite d tas k which was later performe d b y dogs. 712 . 2 (1987) . viii.10 How then d o w e explain Taillevent' s socia l leap from turnspit t o escuier de cuisine. Roi des Queux 14 7 encouraged talen t over noble birth. whose responsibilitie s included roug h an d unskille d manua l labou r suc h a s cleaning fish and plucking poultry. 7 I suspect that Taillevent was no of noble birth primarily because h e t is first mentioned i n 1326 as an enfant d e cuisineai the coronatio n feas t of Jeanne d'Evreux. Food andFoodways. 1994) .8 Another titl e for this lowest o f kitche n position s wa s garfon d e cuisine. 304 . '"Aucun e science de 1'art de cuysinerie et de cuysine": Chiquart's Du fait d e cuisine' . Unlike the Capetiens. ii (Paris . Histoire de I'alimentation e t de l a gastronomie depuis l a prehistoire jusqu'd nos jours. p. Hi. 11 Terence Scully. in whose service Taillevent spent th e greater par t of his career. or salt tax. including th e dictatorshi p of Etienne Marce l in 1358 . supporte d an d advanced the nobility. Le viandier de Guillaume Tirel. p. Pichon and Vicaire . and refused Francoise Autrand. We can therefor e expec t a certain measure o f social flux and mobil ity during this period. Histoire de la vie privee. especially since enfants d e cuisine were ofte n employe d i n turnin g th e roastin g spit. responsible fo r liaison between kitchen an d table . the Valois kings. 207 . who had allied themselves with the bourgeoisie agains t the feudal lords.

12 In 1346 . a trusted kitchen servan t was worth hi s weight in saffron. when poison could easily be slipped into a dish. In th e treacherou s time s o f th e Hundre d Years ' War and o f corresponding civi l conflicts in Paris and France. 258 . in an ordre iteratifofPhillipe VI. I n Taillevent' s survivin g wage receipts. Later. at which. One effec t of these class conflicts was that the Valois grew increasingly dependent o n court servants such as Taillevent. as Christine de Pisan reports in her biography of the king. on 1 1 January 1383 . not for only the preparation but also for the supplying of food. Charles frequently 'exchanged with his servants. h e promptl y executed score s of the rich bourgeois who had opposed him. would have won immediate royal favour. in agreeable familiarity . 261-68 . and fro m 136 7 until the tim e of his death hi s wages stabilised a t around fifty-five livres (six sows per diem). as well a s grants o f ha y and lodgin g t o ai d hi m i n hi s requisitio n o f provisions fo r th e king' s household . so that hi s kindness and gentlenes s woul d encourag e eve n th e leas t o f them t o joke 12 13 Pichon an d Vicaire . pp. a s well a s his increasing financial obligation s t o the king . we see a sharp ris e i n hi s income. p. th e official responsible for obtaining foodstuffs for the royal household unde r the syste m of prise. in 1413. th e butchers of Paris. Le viandier de Guillaume Tirel. I suspect tha t Tailleven t served as panetier du roi (although thi s was not on e o f hi s recorde d titles) . an d fro m a peasantry ben t o n hidin g its produce fro m th e prise collectors i n specially-buil t greniers. Taillevent's success in thes e ventures may have aided him in his career. dubbed Cabochiens after their leader. or an assassination attempted i n the dining room. Royal procurement of food became an important issu e for the Valois kings because o f the severe shortage s of food (especiall y during th e famines of 1351 an d 1539) . receiving land and high wages. 13 Taillevent obviousl y benefited fro m th e intimat e atmospher e o f Charles V's court. In 135 5 he receive d fiftee n livres as an escuyer d'hostel.148 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe the kin g entr y int o th e gate s o f Paris. . A civil servant who coul d successfull y procur e foo d from a ravaged countryside . Whe n Charle s finally gained entry into th e city . Ibid.. Taillevent is called 'our beloved cook' ('nostre ame queu Guillaume Tirel}. an d becaus e of the disruptio n cause d b y the relate d agraria n revolt s and th e interruption o f the Pari s foo d industry . Tail levent was well rewarded for his services. rose and seized control of the city . som e pleasan t an d happ y remarks.

chapter 2. similar legislation ha d appeare d i n Englan d with the Statute o f Labourer s (1351). pp. Al l Manners of Food: Eating an d Taste in England an d France from th e Middle Ages to the Present (Oxford. Histoire des classes ouvrieres et de I'industrie en France avant 1789. i n Manger et boire au moyen age. i (Paris . 'Consumption.15 It i s very possible tha t Tailleven t saw military service in the Hundred Years ' War or in the suppression of the numerous Parisian revolts of artisans and bourgeoisi e whic h plagued both Charle s V and Charle s VI. A charter of 1355 shows him selling horses to the Dauphin (late r Charles V). would have seen his status and value increase as wage labourers became scarce and began demanding higher wages. p . 15 Pichon an d Vicaire . i n Th e Writings o f Christine dePizan. it is clear he was drawn into th e circl e of the court and perhaps identified himself with the nobility. Stephen Mennell. 1 14 . 1984).Queu du Roi. 'pour enforcie r nostr e connestable. Levasseur. 50 n. Labour. He wa s at th e ver y least involve d financially in th e wars. and i t is possible tha t h e himself no longe r identified with those classes or viewed himself as the working artisa n whic h he essentiall y was. howeve humble the y might be'. Roi des Queux 149 and enjo y themselve s with him. Taillevent also took advantage of the cash-strapped royal finances and received land and privileges in return for his services .l. i (Paris . pp . which killed perhaps a third of th e populatio n o f Europe. 16 On thi s questio n i n relatio n t o food productio n an d consumption . pp. and Leisure in th e Lat e Middl e Ages' . L e viandier de Guillaume Tirel. 1400-1800 (London. so that he can better an d more powerfull y combat our enemies'. afin qu'i l puist miex e t plus poissanment combatre noz ennemis'. Eustache Deschamp s (1346 1406) wrote about thi s flight toward s the uppe r classe s among thos e with th e requisite wealth and cour t connections: Christine d e Pisan. servant s an d kitche n helpers. 17 E. Glenda McLeod . se e Fernand Braudel. trans. 500. 42-47. 265 . ed. pp . 211-23. 1974). He mad e hi s career i n a court tha t displaye d increasing hostility to the workin g and bourgeoi s classes . Taillevent also benefited from th e labou r shortage s an d increase s in real wages following th e Black Death. chambermaids. ed. 14 r Whatever Taillevent's origins. 16 I n 135 1 King Jean published a n ordinanc e establishin g wag e limit s for artisan s an d chamberlains. 1985). Persson. 'Th e Book of the Deeds and Goo d Character o f King Charle s V the Wise' . 17 Taillevent . thu s reducin g th e number s o f valets. In 1370 he was asked to lend sixty-seven francs to Charles V 'to reinforce our constable. Charit y Can non Willar d (Ne w York. Deni s Menjot . a s a n experience d an d trustworthy servant of the royal household. 1900). 236-37. Capitalism and Material Life. G. 1994).

3 (1868). my chyld. & hym folow ye. he was responsible for Quoted in Levasseur. such as basic reckoning. So that today one ca n hardly find a worker. Caxton's Book ofCurtesye. & in especyall vse ye attendavnce Wheryn ye shall your selfe best avaunce. however. p. financial responsibility and manageria l ability . Scully has shown. Loke who dothe best. 13. But everyone want s to become a squire. Pour les labours du secle maintenir : Chascun deust son etat retenir. For each perso n wants to maintain grea t state And thus there i s no one anymor e To undertake th e labours of the age . EETS. he must always have encountered some contempt for bein g connecte d with a dirty and manual occupation. extra series. 20 As the provisione r of a royal household. 18 . 205. 'Chiquart'. bu t also the possibility of making connections leading to advancement. ed. Sanz honte avoir de faire son mestier. Furnivall. i. Caxton's compilation entitle d Th e Book ofCurtesye (1477-78 ) urged: Awayte. Off mayste r or soverayne whether yt be. Mais chascuns veut escuier devenir: A paine est-i l aujourdhui nul ouvrier. Eve n thoug h the jobs of sergent d'armes and premier queu (two of Taillevent's titles) required a variety of skills. Applye you for to be servysable That no defawte in you fownden be . 20 Scully. cook of the duk e o f Savoy. with the exampl e o f Maistre Chiquart Amiczo. and his financial transactions with Charles V. Everyone should kee p t o his own degree Without being ashamed t o do his job . Car chacuns veult grant estat maintenir. Tail levent's final position at the court of Charles VI.18 Service i n th e king' s househol d guarantee d no t onl y protection. the tain t of the kitchen cannot entirely have left Taillevent. whan ye stonde at table. Et si n'est mes aussi comme nullui. Histoire des classes ouvrieres.. p. 526: Deceus est tout le monde aujourdhui . p. that a master coo k coul d be literate an d well-educated enoug h to spice his cookbook wit h Latin quotations from Virgil.150 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe Today everyone i s misled. 19 Despite Taillevent's movement in royal circles. 19 FJ.

state s that 'i t was compiled by assent and auysemen t of Maisters and [i. cold. 21 . p. soups as to correct his subordinates when they were negligent. describes the duties and privileges of the master cook under th e Valois: The master cook had th e privilege of carrying a dish to the duke's table. Roi des Queux 15 1 the transfer and safekeeping of large sums of money. he carried. Le Grand d'Aussy . an d t o si t there when h e wanted. H e commande d everyone in the kitchen. eds. il portait. Averroes and Dioscorides as authorities. 'Le Maitre-queux avail le privilege d'apporter a la table du Du e un plat. new series. I n the dietary tradition. and. the Tacuinum sanitatis (popular from th e fourteenth to the seventeenth centuries) and Andrew Borde's Dietary and Breuiary ofHelthe (bot h 1547). qu i lui servait tant a gouter les potages qu' a corriger ses sous-ordres.21 We see here th e master cook organizing and supervising the kitchen in a managerial capacity. EETS. 8 (1985) . The keepin g of the spice s was entrusted t o him . which he used as much to taste the . of] phisik and of philosophic that dwellid in his court'. La garde de s epices lui etait confiee. d'avoir un sieg e dans la cheminee de la cuisine. . such as the Mensaphilosophica (attribute d to Michael Scott. Histoire de la vie privee. 22 Constance B .22 Numerous Latin dietaries from th e thirteenth t o the sixteenth centuries have survived. Th e prefac e o f Th e Forme o f Cury. quand i l etait en fonction . Curye O n Inglysch: English Culinary Manuscripts o f the Fourteenth Century. an anonymous conduct and home econom y book written near th e end o f Taillevent's life. 20 . The Tacuinum quotes Avicenna as recommendLe Grand d'Aussy . Another importan t responsibilit y of the maste r coo k was to ensur e that his foods provided a proper diet in accordance wit h contemporar y dietary science. une grand e cuillier e d e bois. & de s' y asseoir quan d i l voulait. following an account by Olivier de la Marche (Etat d e la Maison d e Bourgogne) writte n i n th e mi d fifteent h century . wet and dry. a ce titre. much like the executive chef in large hotels today.Queu du Roi. Hieatt an d Sharo n Butler . The instructions for managing a feast in Le menagierde Paris. thirteenth century) . 303-4 . iii. All of these works draw on the dietar y traditions o f Galen. foods had to be mixed or tempered according t o their Aristotelia n elementa l and humoural propertie s hot. to have a seat next t o th e fireplac e o f the kitchen . pp. a recip e collectio n compiled b y the maste r cook s of Richard II of England. i n accordance with his title. &. I I commandait a tous les gens de la cuisine. show the haute bourgeoisie imitating Taillevent's culinary and executive practice s with multiple course s and highly-processe d an d labour intensive dishes . when he was working a great wooden spoon. goods and expensive spices.e. lorsqu'ils manquaient en quelque chose'. Hippocrate s and Arabic medicine and quote Avicenna.

dubbed the Enseignements (c. p.24 Andrew Borde echoes this sentiment in the sixteenth century: 'A good cook is half a physician. and th e col d with the hot. Th e English Table in History an d Literature (London. on e might say essential. 'Une parol e medicale prise dans 1'imaginaire: alimentation et digestion chez un maitre chirurgien du XW e siecle'. instrumental in protecting the health of both the monarch and the realm. ed.25 Editions of Taillevent's Le viandier. Scully observes tha t althoug h th e recipe s of the variou s editions of the Viandier do not demonstrate a detailed knowledge of humouralism. follows in manuscript a medical treatise of Henri de Mondeville (1306) . 6. 1929). 183: 'ceu x qui sont gueris par des aliments sont plus facilemen t ramenes a leur temperament que ceux qu e Ton guerit par des medicaments'.26 Chiquart's cookbook. 27 Idem.'23 Similar advice on matching th e elementa l qualitie s o f foods with humoural disposition s occurs in Sir Thomas Elyot's Castel ofHelth (1534). states that the doctor should always be consulted before servin g dishes to a n invalid. role of the cook in aristocratic society: if the princ e was the head and heart of the body politic. and th e fat and oil y be tempered by blending with the salt and acid. 'what is usually reflected in the Viandier. 23. 26 Scully. 25 Charles Cooper. just as if he were to say that the moist should be tempered by admixture with the dry. 24 23 . trans. The Science of Dining (Mensa Phiksphica) (London. for th e chief physic (the counsel of a physician except) doth come from the kitchen'. The oldest French cookbook. and provided a site for th e displa y and propagatio n o f power. and i t seem s t o hav e been commonl y expected tha t th e coo k would consult the court physicians in matters of proper foo d mixtures. is a culinary practice that recognizes in a general way the doctrines propagated by contemporary medical schools concerning the most wholesome means of cooking and preparing particular meat s and th e most salubriou s condiment s t o be consumed in conjunction with them'. 'Chiquart'. 1936). p. his cook was the physician. also containing recipes for the sick. however. surgeon to Philippe le Bel.. Jean-Claude Margolin an d Rober t Sauzet (Paris. such as that of the mid fifteenth-centur y Vatica n manuscript. 1982). etc.152 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe ing '"tha t a contrary i s reduced t o a tempere d mea n b y means o f its contrary". Th e Viandier. has now become com - Arthur Way. contain recipes for the sick . p. Marie-Christine Pouchelle. Pratiques et discours alimentaires d la renaissance: actes du colloquede Tours 1979. 27 Thus we see the important . p. 1300). 204 . 23. p. Mondeville stresses th e importanc e o f diet in medical treatment : 'those who are healed by foods are more easily brought to health [tempera ment] than those who are healed by medicines'. The idea that meals served as a binding social function.

a s cook he knew what went down the Bruno Laurioux. l e repas apparai t clairemen t comme une mi s en scene de la societe o u la qualite d e chaqu e convive est soigneusement indique e par. together. p . noble s an d kin g assembled int o a microcosm o f th e realm. which allows one to overlook the fac t tha t man i s scarcely in realit y "th e same". la possession de couverts.' 28 . th e most powerful princes of the blood could instantly witness who was in and who was out: for example . Histoired'alimentation. At the feast. Carol e Lamber t (Montreal .30 Taillevent would have been entangled in the complicated web of social distinctions at the Valois court . Irmgar d Bitsc h e t al .mor e than an y other Frenc h monarchs exemplified the use of the tabl e an d feast t o establish a n ordered hierarchy . th e richnes s of th e sea t tha t on e i s allotted. which signified tha t h e was cut of f from societ y as having been fals e t o honour. 103 : 'Da s gemeinsame Esse n und Trinke n . where the rank of each banqueter is carefully indicated by. l a proximite d'objets d e table luxueux' . la place qu e celui-ci occupe autour de la table. in Essen und Trinken in Mittelalter un d Neuzeit. 29 Gottschalk. . th e possessio n of tableware and th e proximit y t o luxurious table ornaments. . 30 Georg Simmel . lost eine ungeheur e sozialisierend e Kraf t aus . 'th e most bitter injur y that on e coul d inflic t o n a knight was to cut the tabl e cloth on hi s right and left . (Sigmaringen .Queu du Roi. in Du manuscrit a la table: essais sur la cuisine au moyen age et repertoire des manuscrits medievaux contenant de s recettes culinaires. but eat s and drink s completely individual portions'.Phillip e VI. 'Table et hierarchic sociale a la fin du moyen age' . among other things. 329: 'la plus sanglante injure qu'on putinflige r a un chevalier etait de trancher la nappe a sa droite et a sa gauche. Bruno Laurioux sums up thi s widely accepted observation: In manuscript illuminations. the place tha t on e occupie s at th e table . 1987) . entr e autres . As Georg Simmel has pointed out: 'common eating and drinking unleashes a huge socializing power. meals appear clearly as a social stage play.29 At the table . p . dass man ja gar nicht wirklich "dasselbe". p. yet separate in power and station. 1992) . Soziologie der Mahlzeit (1910) . thi s traditio n had been instituted by Bertrand Du Guesclin' during the reign of Charles V. Roi des Queux 15 3 monplace among food historians . Charles V and Charles VI . sondern volli g exklusive Portionen iss t und trinkt . . ed . ce qui signifiait qu'on le retranchai t d e l a societe comm e ayan t forfai t a 1'honneur. traditio n qu i aurai t et c institute par Bertrand Du Guesclin'. . 'Kochkunst im spatmittelalterlichen Frankreich: Le menagier de Paris'. quote d i n Margaret e Zimmerman . die ubersehen lasst. Even communal eating an d drinkin g demonstrate d socia l distinction s whic h divide d th e ranks of society.28 Taillevent's employers . ed . l a richesse du sieg e qui lui est alloue. 87 : 'Su r bie n de s enluminures.

the delicate songbirds. outdoing the king in lavishness and liberality a the t Henisch. Fast and Feast. implemented th e king' s public punishment and rewar d system instituted a t the table and bridged th e two world of kitchen and s dining-room. and to force the lower classes to remember their place and dress their tables in accordance wit h their social class. merchant s and artificers should have only one meal of flesh or fish in the day. 'the concep t o f understated eleganc e wa s not on e which came easil y to th e medieva l mind . especially in times of famine. to reinforce on a daily basis both the power of the monarch and his largesse. 'defendit a tout sujet de se faire . 33 Cooper. in a sumptuary ordinance of 1294. Histoire de la vieprivee. As Bridge Henisch t points out . 32 31 . et . and be seen to use them. plu s d'u n mets et d'u n entremets. For example. 103-4 . He. as a compliment to his guests and a proof of his own prosperity. The king's master cook was expected to maintain a high level of decorum and. Le Grand d'Aussy. servin g as an intermediary and messenger betwee n thos e two domains. who got the expensively spiced dishes. p. Th e cour t cook mus t have played a central role in disseminating gossi and information about p the political happenings at court and the social standing of its members.33 One function of these sumptuary laws was obviously to decrease consumptio n an d t o foster religious . and that their other food should consist of milk. Hi. being serve d the 'upper crust' signalled access to the choicest privileges of wealth.52 In 136 3 in England 'it was enacted that the servants of gentlemen. pou r u n repa s ordinaire . more tha n tw o dishes with a potage au lard'. political and judicial temperance and good judgement. Franc e an d Ital y als o demonstrate the contemporary awarenes s of food as a central indicato r of social status. spices were a godsend.154 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe gullets of the nobility. afte r all. But in the cas e of sovereigns such as Phillipe l e Bel. servir. an d a host like d t o use expensiv e ingredients. pou r le s grand s repas. The sumptuar y law s o f medieva l England . p 229. the kin g also hoped t o regulate th e tabl e as a political event. butter and cheese'. plus de deux mets avec un potag e au lard'. 5. Phillipe le Bel.'31 We hav e inherite d fro m th e middl e age s a surprisin g numbe r o f metaphors for socia l distinctio n draw n from foo d an d eating : sittin g 'below the salt' indicated inferior rank. for larger meals . Th e English Table. and being born with a 'silver spoon' in one's mouth guaranteed a life among society's elect. 'forbade every subject to have served as an ordinar y meal more tha n on e dis h and on e sid e dish . and. pp. th e larges t an d mos t prime portions . in the use of spices and elaborate subtleties. For the purposes of conspicuous consumption.

reprint. 214: 'II a certainement gouverne. en tout loyaute. du fromage e t des oeufs en Careme. p. light in colour. du beurre . ed. Hi s meal was not long . 37 Le Gran d d'Aussy . les cuisiniers d u roi etant autorises a gouter ces plats et les officiers d'e n fair e 1'essai'. This was an important issu e throughout th e Hundred Years ' War since the various noble houses of France were continually warring among themselves for status and political power. 34 Christin e d e Pisan . pour ce qu'il entendait etr e le plus grand bien de la France'. Le Grand d'Aussy then asked . can provide us with an alternative perspective on the history of his realm. Her description o f Charles's eating habits paints a picture of a sober. i n al l loyalty .' 36 Le Grand d'Aussy . whose father Thomas ha d serve d as Charles's court astrologer. 35 Th e Writings o f Christine dePizan. cheese and eggs during Lent . p. and not much quantity nor grea t variety' . ho w could th e nation . p. 36 Gottschalk. Although Charles V won the sobriquet of lle Sage' for his interest i n learning an d th e sciences . ?' 34 . iii. printed an inventory of the gold and silver vessels in Charles V's household and the list is stunning. an eighteenth-century historian. estimates of his judgement and governing abilities have varied. Charles V(1945.35 This is the same king. comment l a Nation. pour que le plus sage d e ses Rois en employat. He dran k clea r an d simple wine. 'ho w could Charle s V have procure d such treasure ? O r rather . wrot e a commissioned biograph y o f th e kin g whic h agree s wit h Calmette' s interpretation. avait-elle attire chez elle assez de metaux. well cut. la permission de manger du lait. Joseph Calmett e expresses a standar d view o f Charle s V : 'he certainl y governed. An examination of the culinary habits of Taillevent's main employer. She wrote: 'he would g o to the table around te n o'clock. 237 . have accumulated so much metal for the use of the sages t of France's kings?' 37 Joseph Calmette. however. His kitchen staff were authorized t o taste his dishes and hi s officers t o check for poison. for he di d no t favou r elaborate food . saying that suc h foo d bothered hi s stomach an d disturbe d hi s memory. Paris. dan s un tern s ou les mines de 1'Amerique n'existaient pas encore pour les Europeans. . 222 : 'comment l e Ro i Charle s V avait-t-il pu s e procurer un parei l tresor! ou plutot. the permission to eat milk. Roi des Queux 15 5 feast was not onl y an act of bad tast e but als o a serious political affront .. with some sarcasm . deliberate king absorbed in the cares of defending a kingdom. since the splendor of one's table was a transparent allegory of both one's social rank and politica l or military power. p. butter.Queu du Roi. 346: 'par une bulle du pape Gregoire XI. fo r wha t h e understood t o b e th e greates t goo d o f France'. i n a tim e whe n th e mines of America were not yet in existence for Europe. Willard. who along with his wife received 'through a papal bull of Gregory XI. 1979). Charles V. Histoire d e la vie privee. Histoire d'alimentation.

The variou s versions of Taillevent's L e viandier. Le Grand d'Aussy. centred aroun d th e public drama of the feast table. pp. The same spirit of ostentation whic h inspired him t o accumulate a large collectio n o f tableware. helped to forge the necessary noble alliances and national unity that would eventually become necessary in expelling the English from France. the kitchen run by Tailleven included t forty-eight persons. in Manger et boire au moyen age. obviously with an eye to praising th e sobriet y of his own monarch. must be taken into account in any historical interpretation Gottschalk. 'La gastronomic dans Le viandier de Taillevent et Le menagier de Paris'. A s Liliane Plouvier point s ou t concerning th e Vatican manuscript o f Le viandier (c. But at what cost? I have mentioned above how France several times from the 1350s onwards veered towards civil wars exacerbated b y deep class divisions. Le meme esprit d'ostentation qui 1'avait porte a se donner une vaisselle immense. Our imag e of Charles V ruling solely pour la France must therefore com e under scrutiny . in which Taillevent played such a central role. 40 Liliane Plouvier. reflec t a n expensiv e an d Epicurea n cuisine i n its increased employment o f foreign colourin g agents .^8 Both Charles V and Charles VI employed more kitchen personnel than even the ostentatiou s Louis XV. le porta auss i a se donner une Maison nombreuse'. 39 I t is interesting tha t i n bot h Christin e d e Pisan' s an d L e Grand d'Aussy' s assessments of the period sobriet y and temperanc e in eating and drinking are synonymous with wise government. not including the thirteen maistres d'hostel. Histoire d 'alimentation. 222. 298: 'Charles V fut le premier qui mil plus de faste dans sa Maison. 326. p. One coul d plausibly argue that th e maintenanc e o f a n extensiv e an d cohesive royal household. many appearin g afte r hi s death . ii. iii.40 In our investigation of Taillevent and his times. 39 38 . Food . a reference t o the classical metaphor o f the body politic which required prope r balanc e in orde r to ensure good health. was the mos t striking manifestation of this trend'. lik e clothing. p. cannot hide his uncharitable attitud e towards the Valois court: he calls the Valois table unfaste inutile (a useless ostentation) and observes that 'Charles Vwas the first to introduce mor e pomp into his house. Historic de la vieprivee. Le Grand d'Aussy. we have seen how the history of cuisine at the Valoi s court. 151: 'L'avenement d'une classe de "nouveaux riches" a introduit un autre art de vivre qui s'exprime dans un gout pour 1'excentricite et 1'ostentation. rar e imported spice s an d foo d sculptures . Menjot. ed. 1450): 'the arrival of a clas s of nouveau x riche s introduce d anothe r ar t o f livin g which expressed itsel f i n a taste for eccentricit y an d ostentation .156 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe Under Charles V and Charles VI. La nourriture comme le costume en est la manifestation la plus evidente'. als o dre w hi m t o maintai n a numerous household'.

Queu du Roi. . Taillevent' s caree r provide s a portrai t o f th e socia l structure o f fourteenth-centur y France . Th e eatin g an d food preparation habit s of a society can revea l some of the subtletie s an d intricacies of its history. often obscure d b y propaganda. Roi des Queux 15 7 of th e period . th e lac k of written documentary sources and the imperfect critical faculty of both the historian an d contemporary witness.

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4 See Susan F. 1963) p . Michel Jeanneret. quotin g J. Henisch also discusses th importance e of carol singing during certain importan t annua l feasts . such as Christmas and Twelfth Night. 2 Alberto Gallo . th e actors often sang'. Brown.4 In the short allegorical tale Fabula de homine (1518). Theoretical Works. taking up a favourite theme o f the Italia n humanists. for more o n banquet musi c during th e middle age s and Renaissance. pp. away of liberating the senses and deriving enjoyment of a rather sensual nature. in his treatise Complexus effectuum musices. 1995) . ii . Music o f th e Middle Ages (Cambridge . A Feast o f Words: Banquets and Table Talk i n th e Renaissance (Chicago. in Atti delXTV congresso della societd internazionale de musicologia (Bologna. Sabadino's 'Hymeneo' and Salimbeni's 'Epithalamium' includ e extensive descriptions of food. pp. Tinctoris. first in Italy. See also Bridget Ann Henisch. 1975) ii. Henisc h state s that music had thre e principa l parts to play at a feast : to punctuate . gone hand in hand. Weiss Feasting and making music have almost always. Fast andFeast (Universit y Park. A setting has o to be provided. b y announcing th e ceremonia l hig h point s o f the meal . See also Madeleine Pelner Cosman. the Spanish philosopher Vives. 1976). and so Vives seats his hero a t the tabl e of the gods. 14ff . tha t gav e ris e t o extravagan t entertainment beginning about five days before th e actual ceremony. Music i n the French Secular Theatre (Cambridge . p . costumes. music. a kind of hedonism. 3 Music was a very important part of a real-life Bolognese feast celebrating the wedding of Annibale Bentivoglio and Lucrezia d'Este in 1487.11 Medieval and Renaissance Wedding Banquets and Other Feasts Susan F. and late r in northern Europe . 1991). p . praises th e dignit y of man. Massachusetts . ed. The feas t o r banquet is seen a s a locus of pleasure an d plenitude. 3 Howard M . Pennsylvania. and to charm away the pangs of indigestion. iii. The painting s of the Mannerists . 84. since ancient times. pp. 209ff . 18 . 1990). pp.2 'Graciou s livin g i n th e fifteent h an d sixteent h centurie s required musi c afte r dinner . 159-77 . guests. 106 . Fabulous Feasts (Ne w York. documente d i n som e detail . 703-15 . and s o [too] after a staged banquet.1 According to Tinctoris. Albert Seay (Rome. Eight hundred casks of wine and 30. 'Musical Patronage of the Bentivogli o Signoria'. etc. reserve d a special place for the mythological banquet tha t depicte d 1 . to deligh t th e diners. an event .00 0 pounds of meat were provided for an unspecified number of guests and an additional 3000 spectators. 1985) . Weiss. H e describes a birthday banquet celebrated by Jun and the gods of Olympus. 'Musi c increase s th e joyfulness o f banquets'.

In 1968 Andrew Minor and Bonner Mitchell published an edition of the music. drinkin g and eating. all singing 'Bacco. etc. gives names of dishes and beverages.suc h a s th e sordetta (modern-da y harmonica). includin g charcoa l meats . in eating it. instru ments. writte n i n 1508 . suc h as apples. quarters o f raw meat. Some carry drinking vessels. piva. 5 Another importan t foun t o f information regardin g foo d i n Bolog nese lif e come s from a rustic eclogue tha t describes a peasant countr y picnic wit h feastin g an d dancing . a masque in four d their dances. wines . suc h a s the saltarello and 'L a Pigna' (Th e Pin e Cone') . Int o thi s atmosphere o f beauty. n o doub t a s a quid pr o quo for al l tha t meat . the Graces dance. Giovann i Masconi . Bacchus or Fauns fill goblets. and Eleanore of Toledo in 1539. couple s fro m th e butchers' guild were invited to dance until the small hours of the morning. symbolizing the triump h o f Marriage over Chastity . singing. the goddess o f agriculture and of the harvest. Bacci o Moschin i an d Matte o Rampolini. The characters take an active role in preparing the feast. Most of the references to food are made in the contex t of the costumes of the various characters. corn . the Muses sing. drums and castanets . Ofte n ther e are musical instruments intended t o accompany the dancing . 35). a variety of foods are mentioned . cheeses . zampogna and cornemusa (peasant varieties of bagpipes). At the conclusion of the comedy the bacchantes assemble on stage. Eight madrigals were performed. poetry. dance s an d song s popular i n th e earl y sixteenth century . duke of Florence. W e even kno w the title s o f som e o f th e musi c an d hav e locate d compositions in contemporary sources. flutes. in practising thei r musica l instrument s . comedy and a descriptive accoun t o f the festivities surrounding tha t wedding. amon g them. combining mythological and allegorica l characters typi cal of most courtly entertainment a t the time . Apollo plays his lyre. Needless to say all were very drunk and performed accordingly. rebec ( a modern-day fiddl e o r mandolin) . newl y written for th e occasion b y Corteccia. The spectators were then treated to cool wines and sweetmeats. whence the name Florence. Pan his pipes. 5 Another well-documented even t was the marriag e o f Cosimo I. Followin g the perform ance. continued . an d dance s with titles taken fro m popular tune s such as 'Fortuna d'un gran tempo' and 'Levata la strenga'. Costanz o Festa . Throughout th e comedy . dancing. Hymns are sung to Flora. Bacco euoe' (Minor . Cesar e Nappi. luxury and abundan t happines s com e th e characters : Heb e pour s th e ambrosi a an d nectar (cocktail s in th e moder n sense) . It s author .160 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe The highpoin t o f the day s of celebration cam e in th e for m o f a huge spectacle. the gods arranged aroun d a table laden with fruits an d flowers . goat cheeses and th e ubiquitous olive. frittat a an d brus chetta. others. countr y dances . many from th e more rustic cuisine. H e als o uses typica l peasant name s fo r th e characters . p.

See James Turne y Allen. 1979). music edited b y Milton G. the type s of instruments used . Adam d e l a Halle's Jeu d e Robin e Marion. the musical material itsel f and the metaphoric references to food i n the text. 1932) . 1282 when the composer was in Italy in the service o f Robert II . th e roles of the musicians. One o f the numbers in a revival of Cole Porter's musical Out of This World. menstrual blood. 6 . Many accusations were levied against women who tried t o make men fall in love with them. th e Roman de la rose. Hieatt. count of Artois. A source o f information regardin g the effec t o f food o n th e sexua l appetite is the medical literature. Scheuermannjr (Ne w York . almost always accompanied b y some sort of musical entertainment. women were obliged t o stay in the kitchen an d men believed that women were capable of increasing or decreasing thei r sexual ardour by adding to food such things as nail parings. i s 'Cherry Pies Ought t o be Fun'. or even mention o f food. but the music itself has not survived. another will look at actual composi tions that contain specifi c reference t o food o r feasting . specific and more overt on the other. In the middle ages. 4-5 . for sharing thi s information with me. where are my violets. or 'Her e are the roses.7 The second half Cesare Nappi. Speaking of symbolism. Bologna 1508. Jeu d e Robin e Marion. here ar e the violets. 'Egloga villereccia'. Biblioteca Universitaria. The medieva l epic poem.Medieval an d Renaissance Wedding Banquets and Other Feasts 16 1 whose firs t lin e o f tex t read s 'Loos e tha t piec e o f ribbon lacin g you r bosom and let me admire those violets of yours'. which contains a text for the cur e of priapismus. general and somewhat cloaked o n the one hand. Lemay for providing me with the names of these sources . and the literature on witchcraft contains information about th e recipes used by these 'witches'. in MSS Cesare Nappi. where is my beautiful parsley?'. a duet betwee n th e character s Mercur y and Chlo e who regale eac h other with superlatives as they bask in the glow of their recent encounter . I am gratefu l to Professor Helen R. contains several references t o feasting and t o wine.6 Music was indeed a part of the entertainment connecte d with feasts. 1994). One source is the Malleus maleficarum. anothe r is Emmanuel Le Roy Ladurie's Montaillou: Th e Promised Land o f Error (New York. There also exists a repertory of pieces (bot h courtly an d popular ) tha t contained description s of feasting. In an ancient Greek flower song of unknown authorship. i s thought to have bee n written for the entertainment of homesick troops in c. notin g tha t 'parsley ' was plural. semen or dough kneaded with a woman's buttocks. edite d an d translate d Shir a I . My thanks to Professor Constance B . pp. here is the beautiful parsley'. which opened in Apri l 199 5 i n Ne w York. and part of this essay will examine th e ways in which musicians and instrument s contributed t o the pleasur e of the events . Difference s emerge that distinguish courtl y an d peasant event s in the differin g cuisines. such as Avicenna's Liber canonis. a licentious spoo f o f the Amphityron legend . a pastourelle with th e rar e inclusion o f melodies for al l of its songs. throughout history it seems as though food or food substances could be used as metaphors fo r sex. SchwamBaird. 7 Adam d e l a Halle. The First Year of Greek (New York . One part of this essay will examine th e entertainments-both real-life and staged. as is so often th e case . the leader of a group of dancing girls sang the first line and the chorus repeated with the second of a text whose translation is: 'Where are my roses.

In it he explained how the dance was done: 'Robin tient de la main droite l e gant que Marion vient de lui donner. my Marion/ mouth to mouth. 10 Th e singin g and dancin g ar e continued See also Kate van Orden. . both me and you. they play games an d musica l instruments . xix. and there is even an entry in an early manuscript of the work which calls it 'Mariage de Robin e de Marion'.Tha t I have one of those capons/ Wit h a nice fat rump/ that we shall eat. such as genitalia. What she neglects to mention are all of those subtexts where food and food substances are substitutes fo r parts of the body . watercress. bacon. my Marion/ here I will come to talk to you. 1—41 . pp.9 At least one o f the songs in the play contains items of food in its poetry. pendant que Huart et les corneursjouent. Schwam-Baird (Robin et Marion. suc h a s bagpipes. Robin et Marion. so often connoting parts of the body. puis elle disparait. ente r int o verba l disputes . peeled garlic. roasted peas. Wait for me here. Robin continues : 'Then . apples. The reference s t o pies. meat . she refers to a chanson that associates the bir d with male genitalia and states in a footnote that this chanson 'play s off the "Robi n and Marion" story familiar t o musicologists from Ada m de l a Halles's/<?u de Robin e Marion in which the sexua l subtext turns around a knight-errant's falcon'. my Marion/ here I will come to talk to you/ Marion . both me and you. pies. Apres Gautier vient Perrette. Journalo f the American Musicological Society (1995) . 'Sexua l Discourse in th e Parisia n Chanson: A Libidinous Aviary'. capons with nice fat rumps. my Marion/ mouth to mouth. 8 The farandole may have its origins in ancient times in Provence as a dance in triple time accompanied b y pipe an d tabo r tha t involved a chain of men an d women who follow a leader in a variety of winding patterns passing under the raised arms of couples from th e chain. Wait for me here. The play is filled with elements of the carnival (as in the election of a shepherd as king. Worse s yet is one of the character's ideas of a ' bonne chanson .162 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe of the play is a dramatized ' bergerie\ in which a group of rustic characters prepare meal s an d picnic s consisting o f capons. On e exampl e i s the eroti c wor d pla y o n th e bodic e wher e Marion and her shepherdess friend store their two loave of bread. cheese. I tell you . bread . ainsi que les musitiens'. 68) includes a description from Ernest Langlois' 1895 article 'Interpolations dujeu de Robin et Marion'. do you want more from me? ' And afte r Marion' s affirmative response . make for ribaldry and obscenity typical of peasant farce . 9 Schwam-Baird.8 It is thought that this dance formed part of the entertainment at the marriage of Robin and Marion. line 728 and p . In he r discussio n of birds as central carnivalesque subjects. lines 657-70. p. curdled milk and wine. Robin et Marion. utter vulgarities. when he proceed s to sing a song that is actually a scatalogical line from a mock epic poem. the numerous reference s t o food and drink . and eatin g mout h to mout h nee d n o furthe r comment. La farandole fait deux ou trois fois le tour de la scene. as well as in the dances and meals) .' Schwann-Baird. mak e love and conclud e their celebrations by dancing a farandole. qui a sa main droite dan s celle de Gautier . 10 'I still have one of those pies/ with nothing about it/ That we shall eat. de sa main gauche i l prend l a main gauche de Marion. pui s Baudon.

at good occasion . cleve r wit. particularly in the thirteenth. but these pastimes displease me . and a tenor tha t chants a Parisian street cry 'Fresh strawberries. 'Quodlibets an d Centone : A Sharing o f Fol k Repertories' . contains a top voice that speaks of the good lif e complete with wine and capons . in Paris. oil. Music in a Changing Society. a bagpipe. an d perhap s eve n slightl y off-colour . cheatin g an d amorous . mustard. and all this one finds at Paris. Historical Anthology o f Music (Cambridge . buttermilk. Weiss. French an d Italia n popular repertories. o r eve n reference s to somethin g liturgical . pp .and fourteenth-century motet. and i n the Ger man. goo d bread an d good clear wine. 1963) . Some o f these crie s have ribal d texts . The tex t reads: 'On parole: They speak of beating and winnowing and of digging an d of ploughing. fish. companion s of all sorts. vinegar. and stil l others found their way into the artistic repertories of the French chanso n (suc h as those by Janequi an d Servi n in the sixteent h n century) and into the Italian caccia. Mas sachusetts. Fo r more on street crie s see Maria Maniates' article in The New Grove Dictionary o f Music and Musicians (London . Brown. 1964) . ofte n accompanied b y the instrument o f the peasant. An anonymous thirteenth-century motet from the Montpellier codex. A Paris: At Paris. when one need s them . and als o ther e are . no. 6 January 1996 . spoons ladles and services suc . with good clear wines and capons. lard. 12 * Archibald T. gay and joyous. Many can be found embedded i n the polyphonic literature. good meat and good fish . h as chimney-sweeping. 33b. means t o live for poverty-stricken men. morning and night. one finds good bread and good clear wine. meat and fish. as well as in music associated wit h the Frenc h theatre . Som e of these works are descriptive of market scenes. Ottawa .Medieval an d Renaissance Wedding Banquets an d Other Feasts 16 3 interspersed throughout . fai r ladies to solace us as we wish. singing . with th e newly emerging secular . while others include melodic snippets of the calls that vendors and hawker s woul make while advertising and selling d their wares. For there is no lif e as good as being at ease. Frese: Fresh strawberries. and to be with good companions . 265-66. forthcoming in Proceedings: Austria 996-1996. an d t o have. Davison and Will i Apel. th e openin g son g 'Robin s m'aime' ('Robi n love s me') became s o popular it later found its way into the motet repertor y hidden betwee n serious and sometimes even sacred texts. as well as Howard M. everything from berries and honey cakes to butter. The so-called genre of motet-ente combines aspects of proper courtly behaviour. xviii. playing instruments and recitin g poetry. poetry an d accompanying popular tunes. 1980) . ladies o f honour. others becam e th e basi s for basse danses. wild blackberries!' 12 See Susa n F . sweetmeats. Canada.] 1 Street cries form a large untapped source o f information on food and o n market life i n the medieval and early modern periods . wild blackberries'. great joy. singing. Internationa l Conference. Massachusetts. 1 . a middle voic e that mentions finding . Music in the French Secular Theatre (Cambridge. carnival song and frottola. 'On parole -A Paris -Frese nouvele'.

14 Christopher Page. appear below the toasting banqueters. A Feast of Words. 191. p. such a s those practise d b y Dionysus and th e Bacchantes . the musical instrument might be a fiddle or harp . the last appearing t o conduct with his hand. i n almos t ever y case. An author may think of himself as a cook. 13 Feasting in the middle ages and in the Renaissance was ofte accompanied n by a wide variety of musical instruments but. pp . 'He prefers a comic fairy tale. 132. son of Henry II of England. p . 214 . i n th e secon d chapter of his De rerum natura.' H e allude s to writings of his contemporaries . . such as learning t o play a musical instrument. stablecraft. 1989) . food i s the focu s and Foleng o provides the mode l for Rabelais . Hi. harp. Mar y Remnant. 'Foleng o replace s th e topoi o f epic grandeur wit h the buffoonery o f Baldus and his companion. including corruption in the church and the sinfulness of knights who had take n an oath t o do only good deeds. a s for example . an d th e tal e contains a variety of ingredients. 11001300 (London . th e musicians were clearl y the hire d help . p . in the realistic . describes a feast in honour o f the goddess Cybele: 'the taut drums throb t o the beat of the palms. often accompanied the voice. Substituting pasta for ambrosia take s the tex t t o mor e vulga r registers.' Jeanneret. sym phonia ( a medieval stringed keyboard instrument) an d psaltery. on th e Lati n etymology for satire: a dish of mixed ingredients. A young boy is pictured on the bottom righ t of a thirteenth-century illuminatio n of the coronation and celebratory banquet for Henry. 13. Occasionally the musicia n is a young boy placed i n an aristocratic household t o perform small services. 1989). the elements of style are measured ou t as in a sauce. on Foleng o an d th e ar s macaronica. the trumpets sound their harsh threa t an d the Phrygian rhythm of the tibia stirs the soul'. p .. The Owl and the Nightingale: Musical Life an d Ideas in France. setting of Mantuan peasantry. t o th e seriou s an d threatenin g representatio n o f Hell in hi s reference to Dante'. the text is ordered lik e a menu. 94-97. associated with the god Apollo. 15 Seejeanneret. winds. a salad. a macedoine. among others. A Feast o f Words. A Feast of Words. 14 A fourteenth-century satir e with music. Pulc i (hi s Morgante) and Ariosto (Orlandofurioso). he has secure d a har p o n hi s la p b y wrapping th e bas e i n it s bag. while the kithara and lyre. the hollow cymbals crash around them. Jeanneret. such as the aulo s and percussio n instrument s were associated mor e with dancing and pagan rites . playin g fiddle. 132 . 15 It was 13 This passage serves to validate the notion that in Ancient Greece and Rome. . was written jointly by several members o f the Frenc h cour t an d depicte d th e evils that flourished there. Musical Instruments: An Illustrated History from Antiquity t o the Present (London. a salmagundy o r a pot-pourri: a composite genre derived from other forms (see chapter 6 on satire and its cooking). I n a detai l fro m a thirteenth century French Bible . see als o p.164 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe Lucretius. th e instrumentalists . pp. which dispels fear. the Roman de Fauvel. The analogy gives the work of writing a festive and often burlesque character. 220-21 . swordplay or other skills. lik e a stew. 361). Montaigne: 'all this medley [fricassee] whic h I am scribbling here' (Essays.

On the large table was a huge pie or pastry in which there were twenty-eight musicians playing on diverse 16 17 This motet has been transcribed in a number o f modern editions. Philip invited knights to a banquet characterized by an enormou s amoun t o f pomp an d ceremon y in which music played no small part. p. obeys . See also Reinhar d Strohm. popular in French literature of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. 98. is a donkey whose name i s an acrostic : Flattery. serenade first the banqueters and later on Fauvel as he make s his way to the marriag e bed . We will return to this concept of 'sacred' feast at the en d o f this essay. 1977) . On the mediumsized on e wa s a model o f a churc h wit h singers insid e who san g an d played on an organ when their turn came. Music in Late Medieval Bruges (Oxford. Ne w Jersey.Medieval an d Renaissance Wedding Banquets and Other Feasts 16 5 written i n the tradition of animal fables .with musical entertainment share a number of features in common. Envy. o r what Strohm call s a 'conflation ' o f element s that h e say s was typical at these feasts . The teno r is a melody borrowe d fro m liturgica l chant . . 2nd edn . 1985) . In the hall were three tables of varying sizes where the entertainment was staged. suc h a s Norton Anthology of Western Music. no. 20ff. 460. pp. Avarice. 21 . Untruthfulness. the central character . p. Variability. very briefly.ofte n connected t o nuptials .17 Visual representations o f feasts . Olivier de la Marche. A recent reconstruction of the Feast of the Pheasant as it was supposedly celebrated by Philip the Good and his knights in Lille in 1454 includes the performance with musical entremets. deprive d o f sight . 1989). Music at Court (London. creating a kind of charivari. While the donkey and his guests partake of the wedding feast. 1988). 16 Fauvel. 18 Christopher Hogwood. as in a three-ring circus. This banquet is an example of the blurrin g of sacred and secular.18 In his attempt to mount another Crusade against the Turks. The mos t current form s and style s of the so-calle d Ars Nova are represented in a complex polytextual isorhythmic motet 'Garrit gallus/ In nova fert/ Neuma' by the composer Phillipe de Vitry (whose treatise gav e thi s period o f fourteenth-century musi c it s name. in this case revellers banging o n pots and pans. based largely on the memoirs of one of the event's organizers. ed . Th e duplum 'I n nov a fert ' borrows passages fro m Ovid' s Metamorphoses an d sing s of a fox (most likely th e chie f councillo r o f th e Frenc h king ) whos e tai l th e lio n (undoubtedly Phili p I V the Fair) . whil e complaining that this fox does not abstain from meats at the wedding feast. Th e music i s far mor e sophisticate d tha n th e rathe r crud e instrument s might suggest. Jeremy Yudkin. the musicians . an d many of whose works are include d in th e Fauve l MS). Music in Medieval Europe (Englewood Cliffs. Claud e Palisc a (Ne w York. Laziness.

Fro m th e man y images. these good wines of Lannoy Adieu dames. Adieu tous compaignons galois . pandora..three shawm players . 20 One of the chansons performe d a t the Feast of the Pheasant a t Lille was sung by a child o f twelve. The instrumentalists varying in numbers and in the type of instrument-were placed eithe r above the spectators and dancers or off to the side or below. Adieu ce s bons vins de Lannoys. Dufay was the composer of a courtly rondeau (dated 1426) that contained references to food and wine within the poetry itself. e seated downstairs while the masquers are making their way up the stairs to entertain th e wedding part y (see Hogwood. According to de la Marche. ladies. Farewel l to her whom I loved so well. the stag sang the tenor of'Je ne vis oncque' thought to have been composed . spectacles were applauded. in semi-eroti c o r mythologica l scenes . Depiction s of thi s feas t and othe r contemporaneous one s contain som e familiar items: the sparsely set tables. by Gilles de Binchois . cittern. Becaus e I cannot find beans or peas . Adieu toute playsant e joye Farewl l all pleasurable joy. servers. Farewel l all my Welsh companions . Dont bien souven t [ . Farewell . requisite dog (or horse). th e musicians . adieu borgois. as both were said to have been in attendance. Perhaps Binchois and the even better-known Guillaume Dufay were responsible for a number o f pieces in the feast. Whic h very often makes me annoyed . Music was appreciated b y the nobility. pourers and musicians . Adieu cell e que tan t amoye. animals. townsfolk. . farewell townsfolk Adieu cell e que tan t amoye Farewel l to her whom I loved so well. bass viol and treble viol . De moy seres. food servers and most certainly the spectator s ha d highe r statu s a t banquet s tha n instrumentalist s loud or soft. par plusier s fois B y me you will be ofte n Regretes par dedan s les bois. I find myself searching for nuts. 21 Adie u ces bons vins de Lannoys. in outdoo r celebrations. In almost every instance the instrumentalists are set apart from the banqueters.] ier mennoye. accompanied b y the hug e an d beauti ful sta g upon which he was mounted. a composer o f great renown . Farewel l ladies. In the mura l painting of the Renaissance wedding feast o f Sir Henry Unton. deep in the woods 20 19 .19 Instrumentalists included a bagpiper and two blind musicians playin g hurdy-gurdies . perhaps a s much for noise as for low social status. bu t there was rarely involvement. Missed . these good wines of Lannoy. adieu borgois . it appears as if dancers. Je me'e n vois tout arquant de s nois. Car je n e truis feves ne pois.166 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe instruments..isolated .playing the flute trebl lute. Farewell .are .21 The text describes Perhaps the origin o f Tour and twent y blackbirds baked in a pie'. farewell. Music a t Court}. This i s the onl y composition mentioned by name in de la Marche's memoirs. Adieu dames. Farewell .

to drinking and to eating fall into at least three categories: those from th e courtly repertoire that contain general reference . which actuall y describes th e party . Adieu ce s bons vins de Lannoy. etc. datin g from th e 1460 s or 1470s. but was to be seen to a far greater extent in the late fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries. Brown. the composers Robert Morton and Hayne (van Ghizeghem) and the fac t tha t fine dishe s were serve d in fine sets . no. The Emperor Maximilian. The musica l and gastronomi c influenc e of the Burgundian cour t was not limite d t o that geographic region. these good wines of Lannoy.22 Yet another categor y existed for love potions. who knew the ways of the court from his marriage to Mary of Burgundy. Music at Court. Thi s i s evident t o som e degre e i n Dufay's rondeau. and tha t duet s and quartets were performed b y 'low' instruments so loud on e could hea r CONTINUES Ou il n'y a sentier n e voye: Wher e ther e is no path or way: Puis ne scaray que faire doye. C'est trop sus amours entrepis ('T o undertake th e alchem y of love'): Howard M .23 In the courtly category there existed an anonymous rondeau. Historical Anthology o f Music. 63 . riddle s an d metaphors .althoug h possibly with hidde n meanin g . 60 . s We also know from his letters that he sent one of his cooks to Burgundy to learn to make pates in the Lo w Country manner. Farewell . no.Medieval an d Renaissance Wedding Banquets and Other Feasts 16 7 Dufay's longings for more than just the good wines of Lannoy and also refers to symbolic nuts. Hogwood.t o food and drink. beans and peas. 25. the mor e the y seemed t o search fo r artificia l devices. s o there i s no explici t reference t o sexualit y suc h a s that found i n Adam de la Halle's/^w de Robin e Marion. brought musicians from the Low Countrie to Innsbruck. o r for something o f a more carna l nature . those from the newly emerging popular genres where specific foods ar e mentione d i n a less concealed manner . In keeping with the spirit of the chivalric code as recaptured during the earlier reign of Philip the Good's predecessor Philip the Bold. 'A party that no one forgets'. . its location. The n I shall no t know what I should d o Se je n e crie a haute vois. It seems as though the songs written during the middle ages and Renaissance that contain references to food. The mor e the musicians and poets of the late middle ages attempted t o reinstate an archaic code o f chivalry. 1983) . etc. 22 There is a line abou t hunge r i n Oswald Wolkenstein's programmatic fourteenth century song DerMay an d on e has to question whether this is a case of hunger from lack of eating alone . Cambrai . no. its illustrious guests. the object was to protect and honour th e female sex . A Florentine Chansonnier (Chicago. and a hybrid form that borrows and sprinkles in a bit of rustic flavour here and there. 10 0 is another example. p. Mir den Mage n schier' . 'De r hunger mach t lunger. 23 Potions figure in the recipe for love in the chanson by th Franco-Flemish composer e Alexander Agricola . anagrams. Unles s I shout in a loud voice. probably more a branch of magic and alchemy.

1995) . . and a supper of fancy fricasee. Luys de Narvae z may have bee n i n th e servic e of Charles V and was . the Odhecaton (Venice. 27 Spanish Romances o f the Sixteenth Century. A Florentine Chansonnier. no. 25 Joh Lydgate (c . 116.168 /"bo d and Eating in Medieval Europe them in Metz. which weighed on us much more . (rondeau title d 'Se je fay ' o r 'La plus grant chiere dejamais'). The distance from Cambrai to Metz (Mezier) is about seventy-fiv e kilometres. Brown. was the poet making another pu n (th e rondeau is filled with them) o n the 'has' socia l status of those 'hauf musicians? 26 Another example comes from the Spanish repertory. with grand torchlight processions featuring magnificent pageant Howard M. l a la tweet tweet ' i n on e versio n an d 'Vidagon vignett e sur vignon' in another. In one version the soldier is given onion sou p to cool his heat. were beginning to establish themselves as composers of polyphony. . such a s lutes and harps. 'Ya se siente el rey Ramiro'.24 By statin that low or 'has 'instruments are 'so loud' the g poet was betraying his ignorance. 168 . 72 . The Development o f Western Music (2n d edn. ed . particularl y in Florence. His romance or ballad for voice and vihuela accompaniment. K. Indiana. Stolba. 25 Or . in th e 1540s . nor di d the horse s ea t barley. Thoma s Binkle y an d Margi t Frenk (Bloomington and Indianapolis. 'Bas 'as opposed to 'haut 'actually referred to softe r soundin g instruments . and a regular part of the festivities was merrymaking and singing in the streets. the latter used on festive occasions an d in smaller ensembles for dancing. Wisconsin. 133 . wrot e o f 'Instrumenty s n high and lowe/ wel mo than I koude knowe' and of 'lowde' instruments being used for dancing. 1501). The carnivals were held befor e Len t an d between 1 May an 24 June d . but one that fell under th e influenc e of the norther n traditions . French authors cited the words haut and has referring to volume.27 After a period o f Franco-Flemish hegemon y i n th e first half o f th e century. a s has been suggested . while discussing the foods they did not ea t en rout e to battle. Brown . p. cf. a music teacher to the children i n the chapel o f Prince Philip . 1373-c. p. wa s the carniva l song . pp. describes a story told at a meal shared by King Ramiro and thre e o f his commanders.' In thi s case the characters ar e sharin g one meal . The melod y of 'Un franc archier' is taken from a popular song and the text is a description of the 'fre e archers' or French soldiers who were often mocke d for their cowardice. and neve r at e bread. 1450) . 1994). 26 Another example from thi s period that contains reference to food in the text is a four-voice chanson by Loyset Compere. One genr e in which they excelled. A Florentine Chansonnier. and in another he cooks himself a tasty dejeunerof well-seasoned tripe and onion soup. The image of the yokel soldier crossing the mountains into Italy is heightened by the refrain which is made u p o f nonsense syllable s 'la l a too too . one of the compositions included in Petrucci's first printed sourc e of polyphonic music.M. The tex t include s the followin g account: 'W e rod e for seven days . the Italians. not pitch. 24 . 116ff . Madison. i n Reson and Sensuallyte. around th e third quarter of the Quattrocento. no.

unlike serious works that use preexisting material as a structural or symbolic device.29 It is the metaphoric musical salad. pp. rotibouilli. such as 'Fortuna d'u n Florentine Festival Music. pp. 28 Severa l dea l quite directl y with the matte r o f food. 1480-1520. Reese. cultivates and properly eats the vegetable. n. 439-83. 31-32. Wisconsin. or some of the culinary terms used to describ e thi s form. pp. in Music in theFrench Secular Theatre. 28 . Brown. 3. good eyesigh t and cleanliness . uses a quodlibet for illustration. The poet. in his Syntagma musicum (1618). no . such as centone and incatenature. 51. in fact. 515ff) .Medieval an d Renaissance Wedding Banquets and Other Feasts 16 9 carts and costumed masqueraders. an d how one plants. such as patience. great care. fricassee. who provided the first systematic definition: a mixture of diverse elements quoted from sacre d and secula r compositions. One voic e is a patchwork of quotations whose text is shared by other voices (cf. xv. Ibid. He presented three categories: 1. cf. 6 . the tunes were so popular that . These pot-pourr i were also used by Glareanus and Zarlino . p. see above . there ar e several other terms that can apply to the Italian combinative compositions. but. Howard M. p.JJ. 85. 45. 30 J. Praetorius refers to messanza (or mistichanza) a s the Italian form o f the quodlibet.. 21. centoneand other forms of the generic quodlibet. Music i n th e Renaissance (Ne w York. See also above. Each voice is a patchwork of quoted fragments. Proportionate musices. 163. but i t was Praetorius. cf. a numbe r o f the m becam e th e melodies fo r th e lauda o f th e follower s of Savonarola. On e tha t come s t o mind i s the 'Canto de' cardoni' whose poet refers to the growers of artichokes. 15 . 29. Sometimes popular tune s are found quoted in the refrains offrottole. 2 . for reference from Jeanneret on Folengo. ed. 1472. Each voice is an independent cantus prius factus. no. Jacopo d a Bientina. Gallucci. 30 Heinric h Isaac's 'Donn a di dentro / Dammen e u n pocho / Fortun a d'u n gra n tempo'. o r th e mesticanza. vii-xi. 1981). Galluccijr (Madison . suc h a s th e ensalada. Florentine Festival Music. pp. also see above. New Grove Dictionary o f Music and Musicians. Maniates et al. Generall y the quod libet served no higher purpose tha n that of humour or technical virtuosity. In fact. Melodies and text s from som e of the most popular tune s of the late fifteenth centur y are cobbled together. 1959) . has a different text in each voice. 29 The poe t is Lorenzo d e Filipp o Strozzi . like the polytextual mote t described earlier. p. (1992) . on street cries. The 'moral ' states tha t 'a n artichoke eate n withou t salt is as unexciting a s a woman who goes to the carnival with her ow n husband'. Man y canti carnascialeschiwere based on popular tune s of the day. following Lorenz o de ' Medici' s death . cites ClementJanequin's 'Les cri s de Paris ' an d Jean Servin' s 'L a fricassee de s cris de Paris ' a s two chansons composed almost entirely of advertising slogans tha enable one to reconstruct the melodic t formulas fo r a number of street cries that constitute a special category of stage music intended to imitate everyday life. 15 . Tinctoris. Patrick Macey. 16 4 n. 146 . 'Canto d i donn e maestr e d i fa r cacio ' i s a son g that describes ho w women become expert at making cheese. lists other attributes required to achieve a good product. that provides material regarding the foods eate n in more rustic settings. with a step-by-step explanation of the manufacturing process. 'The Lauda and the Cult of Savonarola' in Renaissance Quarterly.

Although they are generally from the Veneto. p. oyle. William Prizer mentions that Padua was acity well-disposed to the poetry and music that accompanied this movement from 'palac e to barnyard'. 304) . Ne sente ghusto alcuno Fo r a long time Fortuna d'un gran tempo Fortun e has had the scent of it O gloriosa donna mis bella. as well as at Innsbruck for th e Emperor Maximilian . from a small bunc h of crocuses. a number o f them appear in the repertories of Lombardy. 25) believe that the word comes from the Yiddish' matzechuchen'. t o a shepherd' s staff. to a dance popular in the sixteenth century . Prizer. an international composer from the Low Countries. Villotteare popular polyphonic pieces that contain dialogue. 1611 . als o worked in a number o f northern Italia n cities . 140n. t o a kind of unleavened brea d (matzoh) . He arrived i n Florence i n about 1484. mad e o f milke. 32 Isaac. by way of the Spanish mazorca or Portuguese macaroca. O my proud. meale and salt ' (Queen Anna's New World o f Words. An d give me much. and the requisite corpus of popular tunes. Cesare Nappi. Tuscany and Rome. London. 9 (1991). Demo phon must have liked the idea of using slightly off-colour tunes as refrains in his music. Torrefranca. fine lady. 1939). Th e popula r tun e 'Famen e u n pocho de quell a mazachroca ' i s also found i n th e riprese of 'A che so n hormai' b y the Bolognes e compose r Alessandr o Demophon . 31 The wor d mazzacrocha may have several meanings. Giv e me a small bunch of crocuses. 150 . A Florentine Chansonnier. di dentro della tua casa Lady . andjeppesen (LaFrottola. p. 'Eglogavillereccia'.giglietfiori There ar e roses. Ilsegreto del Quattrocento (Milan. iii. he did the same thin g with the piece abou t unlacin g rib31 32 Sonrose. meaning the breadstick. 130 . Although none of Isaac's canti carnascialeschi survive intact. p. 3-56. where h e worked a s organist a t several churche s an d serve d Lorenzo . characters from th e lowe r echelons (suc h as the womanize r from Bergamo) . Donna . Dammene un poch' di quella maza chroca Giv e me a small bunch of crocuses Dammene un poch' di quella maza chroca Giv e me a small bunch of crocuses Et mene dar troppo. the quodlibet 'Donna di dentro' belong s t o the same genre . or finally to an unprintable obscenity. In his article. mentions that Pannella (the author of the most complete study of this text) favours the bawdy definition. 'Games of Venus: Secular Vocal Music in th e Lat e Quattrocento an d Earl y Cinquecento'. dialect. grewell. including one by Sir John Florio in 1611 who defined 'maza' as a kind of 'meate. within your house . no. favours th e definitio n as focaccia. teachin g the Medici children as well as composing music for the carnivals. pp. bot h mentioned a s dances by Cesare Napp i in his rustic eclogue o f 1508. water . in Journal ofMusicology. coming from th e Arabic. lilies and flowers Dammene un poch o di maza chroca. . Brown. p . to a long pastr y or cake in the shape o f a stick with a knob at one end . Cattin . rpt 1968. Several other definitions have been put forward. or hastie puddin g tha t countri e people were wont t o eate .170 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe gran tempo ' an d 'Dammen e u n poch o d i quell a mazacrocha' .

Prizer. Guglielmo Ebreo o f Pesaro.34 See above. 147 . Both compositions were written in the courtly genre known as thefrottola. among others (Shemek . anguilles. 'Anguilles. See W . includes a piece. anguillions' and'Iosom maistro Barileto' that employs a popular street cry about th e procession o f the eels (in fractured Italia n and French). These includ e tw o settings of the popula r tun e 'Tente allora'. pp. no . occasionally subversive 'patchwork poetics'. no. 1998). with the dancelike nonsense refrain Tandan dan dan daritondella Tan daridundella'. sinc e the popular tune is textually dissonant wit h the courtl y stanza tha t precede s it.. dialogue and sometimes a dancelike refrain and a series of nonsense syllables. ed. but proceeds with nonsense syllables and disconnected fragments including the litany 'Exaudi nos' and a quotation from th e text of the Mass (Howar d M . Pasoti and Dorico. and another about the rantings of a drunken court cook whose name translates as 'little keg'. She resorts to the tradition of the Italia n centone. typescript of unpublished paper (1988) . n. A bit later one finds true villotte. che sa' t u far?'. Prizer believes that the piece abou t th e drunke n cook was probably included in an intermedia of a comedy performed at court. Libra primo del la Croce: Rome. numbe r 70 . Brown.Medieval an d Renaissance Wedding Banquets and Other Feasts 17 1 bons an d admirin g violet s mentione d earlie r i n connectio n wit h th e Bolognese eclogue. North Carolina. which borrows line s from Dant e an d Cavalcanti. e that quotes the dance tune 'Rostiboli gioioso' i n its cantus (known in France as the 'Roti bouilli' or the roasts and boiled meats). 1500 tha t clearly belongs t o the cour t o f the Gonzag a at Mantua. 131) . as a miniature version devoid of plot. Terracina ma y have bee n inspired b y Petrarch's Rime sparse. 1526. William Prizer. canzoni. begins as a dialogue betwee n a peasant gir l and he r suitor who asks her a leading question. One such example is Marchetto Cara's 'L e so n tre fantinelle' . 32 . an d ho w they would make garlands of flowers t o wear at their importan t feasts. believes that the nonsense insertion o f the popular song into the essentially courtly poem functions as a parody o f the courtl y repertory. or pieces that rely exclusively on popular tunes. Petronia Proba. 14. ed . Prizer . tha t contains references t o herbs. 33 . p. Barbar a Spart i (Oxford . 1993) .33 In this and man y other cases. A Florentine Chansonnier. Ladies Errant: Wayward Women and Social Order in Early Modern Italy (Durham. which tells of three littl e maids who are t o be married . Element s of th e popular ar e found in pieces unique t o a manuscript o f c. My thanks to Deanna Shemek for sharing with me a draft of chapter 4 from he r new book . There ar e examples in Christine de Pisan's writings. 296ff) . and London. Another example . p . use dialect. 'Vilana. as well as in the earlier works of a feminist poet of the fourth century. Wisconsin. and some works that were most probably for the Mantuan cour t theatre . a work by Tromboncino that includes the nonsensical ripresa on by Cara . It analyses poetry of Laura Terracina and its relationship to Ariosto's epic. which a s first adopted b y Greek and Latin Homerists. stemming from th e cento of Antiquity. 'Paris 676 and Musica l Life a t Mantua Around 1500' . rearranges the verses of one author into new. 1978). flou r an d baking . 34 Musical parody has its literary counterpart in the centone being written during this period. it is clear tha t the urbanization o r rusticiza tion of the courtl y tradition wa s at work. in his article 'Games of Venus: Secular Vocal Music in the Late Quattrocento and Early Cinquecento'. frottoleand capitoli (Madison. 180 . the latter a rearrange r o f Virgil and th e forme r o f Boccaccio.

The y repaire d t o room s wher e the y were entertained b y instrumental music. his brother Ippolito II d'Este. a salad. archbishop of Milan. as well as other vocal and instrumental music. 'Game s of Venus'. W. 'A Cook's Tour o f Ferrara i n 1529' . p. p. The late fourteenth an d early fifteenth centurie s sa w an attemp t a t reviva l of th e chivalri c code . according t o Prizer. 17. Gundersheimer. pp. During the second course. Ar t an d Life a t the Court o f Ercole I (Geneva . Rivista italiana di musicologia. tomatoes. 24 January 1529 . 'Tavola e cucina nel secolo XVI'. p. allow .. his aunt. See also. mortadella. as in the Napp i eclogue describe d earlier. When the trumpet s sounded the y returned t o the great hal l to wash their hands in perfumed water and eat the first course. the guests left the great hall so it coul d b e prepare d fo r th e banquet . This was followed by a renewed effort to wed the courtly and popular tradition s in the late fifteenth an d early sixteenth centuries . Brown. small radishes (ravenelli) anchovies. Prizer describes a 'movement away from th e Petrarchan amour courtois to the more popular notion s of love that trea t both th e lover and the woman as solid flesh an d blood'. or in an entire repertory of theatrical works stemming from Sien a and Padua . quail . roasted and studded with orange. his wife. Ibid. duke of Ferrara. eel. radicchio. Renee of France.37 During one of the courses the guests were entertaine d Prizer. and a number of ambassadors and noble men and women. the mistres s of Ippolito II' s uncle) and fou r others. trout . Isabella d'Este Gonzaga. croquette of wild boar. ed. th e thirteenth. Messibugo's cookbook was entitled Banchetti. Following a performance of Ariosto's comedy La cassaria. 'the courtier t o escape fro m th e confinements of the amour courtois ?& One very clear example is found in th e diar y o f th e Estens i family stewar d Cristofor o Messibugo . p. musi c an d musica l instrument s o f a peasan t tradition . see als o Prizer .an d fourteenth-centur y motet s occasionall y revealed som e combination o f courtly and peasant fare. 217. 10 (1975). composizionidivivande e apparecchio generate (Ferrara. pastel-coloured pasta. bread crumbs . eggs. Gazzetta letteraria.172 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe The thirteenth-centur y pla y about Robi n an d Mario n mad e us e of the food . 27-30 . 17. truffles. This included endive. 1960). See also Angelo Solerti. 35 . 35 The replace ment o f the courtie r b y the villager. given by Ercole II d'Este for his father Ercol e I d'Este. liver etc. During this first course a composition b y Alfonso dell a Viola was sung by Madonna Dalida (Puti . which included capons. but als o gav e recipe s fo r th e mouth-waterin g Epicurea n delight s tha t were serve d t o th e aristocrat s i n attendanc e a t thes e earl y sixteenth century banquets. mor e past a an d o f course th e require d wine s from a 36 35 . Messibugo's description i s of a banquet on Sunday. 1 4 (1890) . A modern edition has been made by Fernando Bandini (Venice. 1549). 'Games of Venus'. 1972). marchioness of Mantua. wh o detailed no t only the entertainments betwee n each of the many courses. 37 Howard M . a s seen in the works of the Mannerist composers a t the court of Philip the Bold an d i n the chanson s o f the composer s associate d wit h the court s of Philip the Good and Charles the Bold.

La moschetta. p. Brown. wh o retire d to their room s . p. as if all this were not enough . with five male and tw o female companions. Hi s patron Alvis e Cornaro. 'Games of Venus'. Even for this 'postlude' th e guests were serenaded b y four flutes. a s well a s with th e contemporar y Poliziano an d Sannazaro. so that this time it could be prepared fo r the ball. 39 They may have been making a case for the benefit s of peasant foo d ove r th e delicacies o f the nobilit y as Ruzzante himself did in his eclogue 'L a Moschetta' : Still it would be better i f you were to follow our example: eat good bread and good salted cheese. meringue s an d whippe d cream. suggests that the works sung by this group were most likely villotte. flutes. whic h included oysters . 35. considers this shift away from th e more courtly entertainment akin to going from th e sublime to the ridiculous. During th e sevent h course. a lira. Most of the nin e course s were provided with musical entertainment supplie d b y the court composer Alfons o della Viola. crumhorn senza bussola (without cap). a quilled keyboard instrument. p. a rich Venetian aristocrat livin g in Padu a wh o was denied noble status in the Republic. Ruzzante' s early work confirms his familiarity with the earl y major Italian writers . 'A Cook's Tour'. ed. Ruzzante . clothing. who improvised muc h o f his repertoire o f dialec t variety of vineyards. apples . viols. 224.Medieval an d Renaissance Wedding Banquets an d Other Feasts 17 3 by a visitor from outside th e Ferrarese duca l establishment. 240. recorders. His family's university associations gave him a certain amount of literary sophistication. some of whose name s are mentioned . and th e duke's singers and instrumentalists. actor an d musician . music and dance . A Franceschetti an d K. Ruzzante had contact with peasants in his early life. and drink good wine. 38 While the y were being serve d a variety of luscious pears.. Angelo Beolco . four people sang diverse madrigals.30 pm the shawms welcome d the guests to dance and all -except for the duke. the guests were entertained by jesters ('buffoni') 'alia veneziana e alia bergamasca'. cimtinued . This continued for nine courses followed by a pasty from which the names of the guests would be drawn for party favours. Ruzzante. and rustics (' contadini} 'ali a pavana' who went around th e table clowning. Cornaro. 1993). a harpsichor d and shawms .partied . trumpet s sounde d th e signa l t o th e guest s t o leav e th e grea t hal l onc e more. p. san g 'can zoni e madrigali alia pavana'. Prizer. th e famous Paduan playwright .R . know n by his stage name . Bartlett (Ottawa . 40 Although th e stewar d faile d t o giv e title s o f musi c performe d a t th e banquet. built a theatre for Ruzzante. 'A Cook's Tour'. an organ with various stops. duchess and marchioness. rather than eat so many delicacies and s o many different kinds of foods. 39 Ibid. 40 Ruzzante. At 8. too. exposing him to their cuisine. Dant e an d Petrarch . a mute cornett. 224. an d they went around the table debating in dialect abou t rusti c things. Th e wid e variety of instruments included lutes . dolzaina. bein g fed one last time ( a 'light' supper) befor e going hom e at dawn. 38 Brown. trombones. Ruzzante. a little dry. was an exponen t o f healthy living. Then. ice creams and cheese s in the shapes of towers and castles. oranges.

alongsid e divin e grace and biblical devotion. Marriage both heavenly and earthly and music of the heavens and of the earth are among the subjects of Hildegard's poetry. a veritable mix of secular and clerical. which is a debate in verse between a religious monkish ow l and a free-spirited livel y nightingale. is an expressio n o f the difficult y i n separating elements of sacred and secular. e minstrels. the d the categor y o f the sacred feast. 1100-1300 (London. ed. Christopher Page. Pea pods in the borders o f a page in a fifteenth-century Book of Hours are symbolic of the Virgin Mary. 98. 1964). Looking a t a n eve n earlie r repertoire .ofte n making references t o food and flowers. 19-21 . 1982). Guests included court chaplains. pp.41 The musical and culinary lines are blurred . many of these songs. Dufay's 'Lamentatio Sancte Matris Ecclesie Constantinopolitane' may hav been performed a t the feast. ' Strohm. 1939). p. animals .174 Food an d Eating in Medieval Europe songs. church musicians from St Peter's in Lille. as mother of Jesus. Mary is carrying th e see d o f eternal wisdom. Christopher Page. accompanied b y minstrels and mummers. The 'Ow l an d th e Nightingale'. 'Venetia n Folk-Song s o f th e Renaissance' . 1985). thought by some musicologists to be of Venetian origin. mentioned titles within the texts of his own plays. The Owl and the Nightingale: Musical Life an d Ideas i n France. erotic imager y . 42 The blurring of sacred an d secular has already been allude d to in the discussion of the Feas t of the Pheasan t i n Lille in 1454 . Papers Read a t the International Congress ofMusicology (New York. were also mentioned in that rustic Bolognese eclogue written years earlier by Cesare Nappi. Heinric h Besseler. vi (Rome . 42 Knud Jeppesen. calle d fo r b y several lament s o n th e fal l o f Constantinople (May 1453) whic h seem t o have been recited. 'The religious purpose o r pretext of the feast wa s a crusad e agains t th e Turks . in the interest of time. pp. 62-75. a medieval allegorical tale. there are more examples of secular. Opera omnia. 41 . Music i n Late Medieval Bruges (Oxford. tha t of Hildegard o f Bingen's Sequences and Hymns (ed. often i n veneration of the Blessed Virgin. a s well as secular and sacred . 1989) . Curiously. The praye r on tha t page is concerned with th e subject o f wisdom. Guillaume Dufay.courtly and popular . will have to be savoured in another essay.

Pierre (treasure r of Normandy). see Peasants. 6. 41. 92. Banquets. 47. 90 Annuities. 57-59. see Charity Ambrosia. 45-46. 35. 8 7 Alcoholic beverages. 94. 127. Alexander. 164 American culinar y heritage. 59. 116 Aphrodisiacs. 34-38. 64. 19 Baked goods. 169 Artisans. 167 Agricultural zones. 17 3 Apprentices. 45. see Charity Almshouses. 7. 87-89. 94. Suffolk . of barley. 161 Anchovies. 113 Advent. 21. 146-47 Bake mete. 67. 161 Appetizers and hor s d'oeuvres. Simnels. 69. 152 Amphitryron. Pastry. 1 2 ^Ethelred I. retirement hous e converte d from. 135. Du e Him di cucina. 22. 13 9 Alms. de Schrebstrate (Colchester) . 142 Adam and Ev e (biblical figures). 91. consumption in . 151 Ars nova. 22. 63. 34. see also Brewers Allegory and myth. 133. 33. 162. 67. Tarts. 90-91. 45 Assarting. 162. 68. Pancakes . 102 . 99 Arable husbandry. demesne. 164. king of Northumbria. 44. 135-36. 68 Baking. Crepes. Chiquart. see also Carpenters. 49-51. king of England. 141. Wafers. Waffles Bakehouse. 151. 87-88 Agriculture. 21 Animals. 56 Alehouses and taverns . 100. 45 Averroes. 63. William. 90 Ale wives. 151 Avicenna. 166 Almond milk . 171-7 2 Aristocratic households. 41. 11. Suffolk. 150. 172 Andreas Capellanus. 5 5 Baker (Pistor). 160. 121 . 90 Aelfric. 77 Augsburg. 6 8 Astrology. 93-94. 32. 100. Bruschetta.see also York Bailie. 98. legend of . cook of duke o f Savoy. 91 . 3. 112. Flans. of oats. 89 Ariosto. 56. C'est trap sus amours. Oatcakes. 65 Assize of bread. 135 171 . Cakes. Hertfordshire. 95. Peter. 104 Amiczo. 28. 125. in fables. 26 Adaptation o f recipes. 28 Agricola. 12. 164-6 6 Annales Londonienses. 101. 26. see Feasts and feastin g Bark of trees. 68. 114. 37. 119 Aristode. consumption of . 121. 68 .Index Acton (Aketon). at feasts and banquets . 20. 95 Alcuin of York. 142 Bacon. 95-96 Ale-stakes. 11 Aldenham. 165 Artichokes. 165-66 . Franciscan s at. 45 Bakers. 91. 161 Babwell. 31. 105-6. Colloquy. 74 . 12 Advertising. 159-60. Pasties. retired 'Anonimo meridionale'. se e Bread. Germanus. evidence of brewing from. see also Harvest Archaeological excavations. Th e Art o f Courtly Love. 113 Almonds. 63. 45. 9 9 Ale. Mason s Artois. as food. 11 ^thelred II. 34. 87. 57-58. 110 Apples. 37.

45 Beans. picked by poor villagers. 42. 41. Surrey. 89-90. 2. th e Venerable. 67. 163 Beverages. 35. 36-37. 113 Breakfasts. 172 Board (meals ) and room . 35. 100 . manor of . 11 6 Bologna. wastel. 68. 36. see also Cambridge. Suffolk. chronicle of. 74 . of pork. 118. 22. 135 . 31. Hone y cakes Calais. 28. seealsoAle. 160 Bruce. 23. Gilles de. see also Baked goods. 166 Birds. 142 Bartholomaeus Anglicus. 101 Brawn. 173-74 Beowulf. Dredge. De proprietatibus rerum. 67-68. 95 . 17 1 Bockenheim. 138-39. 45 Brandy. 44. Worcestershire. employees and servants of. 136-37 Buckinghamshire. 163 Butter sellers. ribs (cooked). Andrew. 168.Jean de. caloric content of Cambrai. bea n Bede. wedding of. 22. Adam. 37. 134 Berkshire. Pottage . Ale wives. 152 Boteler. 44-45. brown. 4-5. 1. 56. 67-69. Beer Bromsgrove. black. 69. 5-7. 133-44. Sir Andrew. 30-31. 44. croquette of . 173. 47. marriag e feas t at in 1487 . hauceleamye. 98. 90. of capon. Anglo-Saxon. 32. Tripe. sexual allusions to. 30 Cabbage. 1 0 Benedictine Rule . Pottage. Worcestershire. 99 Bures. 1 9 Brewers and brewing . 82 Bryan chapel. 12. 'treat'. 139 Brabant. Bakers Breadcrumbs. 92.9 Bruschetta. 94. 168. 167 . court and rulin g family of. 68. see also Bread. for ale. Oakington Candlemas. 91 Caloric content o f food. Hertfordshire . 94. 31. 35. se e Windsor Bermondsey. 93. 95. Veal Beer. 113. 113. 112 . 50. 67. 32. 28-29. of peas and beans. 99. 32. 55-56. monastery of. 49. 31. 59. guests of. 142. 112. 68. Robert. rye. 163. 162 Bitterns. 22 Braziers (for cooking). sops in wine. 168 . 60. 28-29. 63 Caedmon. of London. 135 Burgunday. 41-42. price of. meals served by . see also Gingerbread.67. 68. 162-63 .41. 140 . 46. Elsworth. Marrow bones Borde. 16 Bentivoglio. 87. 67 Caccia (carniva l song). 20. Slapton. . 159-6 0 Bones. 38 Black Death. 94-95. and hochee). 87. 89. 56. 167 Bury St Edmunds. wheat and rye . 4 7 Bream.100. of peas and beans . 88-89. see also Archaeological excavations. 10 9 Blindman. Roman. 3. 130 Butter. wild. 121. 142 Boar. 59 Brouet houssie (also called hauseleamye. Giovanni . family an d genealogy of. and bread . 16 7 Cambridge. 135 . 20.176 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe 67. annals of. 149 Blancmanger of fis h o r poultry. 99 Barter. father of Alice de Bryene. wheat. 15 . countess of Warwick. 9 8 Beef.4-10 . s^Food and drink. 13 5 Bryene. 23 Basel. see Drink Bewdley. 2. Sir Ralph de. 143 Barley. Alice de. 145. 29. 140. 41. 59. 57. 48 Cambridgeshire. broth. 'cokett'. 47. 33-38. 135. 74 Butchers. 13 Berkeley. 12 Bedfordshire. see also Marrow bones. 40. 141-42 . 102 . 48 Boccaccio. Lady Elizabeth. barley. in pasties. 96-99. 102. monaster y of. 28 Bread. Cambridgeshire . 28. barle y Barnet. 162 . Annibale. brewing in household of . 10-13. Lord Guy and his son Guy. 140 Bryan family and estates . Angelo (Ruzzante). Devonshire. 139 . Elizabeth. 91-92. 80-85 Berries. 78 Brut. 68 . 42. 29. see also Bread. 56. 43. 107. 143 Buttermilk. oat. 103-4 . 5 Cakes. 97. 4 . white. 91. 67. 41. 68 Binchois. barley. 16 . 134-43. 68. unleavened. 133-34. 22. consumption of . 160 Beolo. 35. cost s of. 108.

se e Flans Cheesemaking. 162 Cara. Wafer iron s Cooking. English. 16 3 Charcoal. roll of 1371. 114. 57-58. 118. 24. 112-14. 45 Cookery. see also Canvas ad coquinam. 15-26. se e Eucharist Compere. 109. 143 . 1 Cheese. Wine Climate. Canterbury Tales. Book ofCurtesye. Inventories . Coquus). as physician to society. 57. 145 Carnival and play . 121-22 Cocus. Noble. 107. j^Pisan Christmas. 155-56 Charles VI. 28. 90 Cider. 168 Condiments. 49-51. 109-11 . 42. 173. 35. 73-86. 150 Cooks and cookshops. 154. Hens. Fireplaces. 35-41. 40. 38-41. 45. 167 Christ an d Satan. 68. 44 Commercialization of medieval England . Geoffrey. 32 Chickens. 113-14. Recipes. 162. 153. 141. 172. 171 Careme.5<*afcoWoo l Cloth workers. 35 Capons. see also Galantine. 42. fal l of . commercial. 35. Livestock Caxton. xi. Edward. 162-63. Tirel. 137 Christmas meals. Dyke. fas t Cook ( Cocus. of Champagne. 1 1 177 Christine de Pisan. Essex. see also Cups and goblet s Champagne (drink) . 17. 67 Cloves. 99 Chanson. 68 Chronicles. 31-33. 59. Thomas . 32. 96. William. 49-50. 20. 50. 3. social role of . Recipes. 67. 15 9 Carpenters. 46-48. 28-35. 28-29. 10 Christ I (Adven t lyric). wage s of. Suffolk. 2. see Cooks and cookshops Cattle. companies . 36-42. cookshops . 104 Cannibalism. 15 6 Charles th e Bold . king of France. duke of Burgundy. 109 . 37 Colchester. 29. 136 142 . 31. 152. se e Ritual Chalices. Kent . Cereals. symbolism of. se e Food. 25 Clare. 29. see Rabbits Constantinople. master. 32-33. 44 . 16 0 Cornmongers. Somerset. Ovens. 20 . 93. Marie-Antoine. 38. 17. 163. se e London. 35 Cistercians. 66. 136-37 Cat meat. 16 8 Charles V. 153. 127 13 1 . 33. 40. emperor. 103. Hearths. Si r Robert. 15. 165 Charles V. of Brie. double-entendres in references to . Sauces. 109. Austi n Friars at. 44-46. see also Dung. 160. Wafe r iron s Cooks. books. 67 Codling. Spices. x . suburbs of. 14 3 Candy. 10 5 Caterers. University of London. see also Braziers. 146-47 . Verjuice. 121 . 54. Occupation s Coquus. 152 . 44-45. Loyset. 162. see also Capons. i^Amiczo Chivalry. Ladles. 59. see Diet. x. 57. Charivari. see Weather Cloth. see Cook Corbet. 103-4 Cheddar. se e Grain Ceremony. 48-49. 54. 51. 73-84 Canterbury. 102. 57. 102 Chancery. Marchetto. 70. 127 Charity. 29. 'garbage' of. 29. 150 Centre for Metropolitan History . 146-50 . types of. 69. 17 4 Convenience foods . 123. 120. 169 Cheesemongers. 168 Carols. see also Curds Cheesecakes. 111. 11 0 Conies. 139 Corn. as food. 90. 37. 142 . 142 Class and socia l status. 40-41. Kitchens . utensils and cookware. 172 Chaucer. 64-66 Common Pleas . 29 . 112-13 Coal. 38. methods of . meat of. Spoons. 88 Cinnamon. 20. Pullets Chiquart. Garlic. 35. 120. 'Feeding the City' research project. see Cook Cod. 122. price of . 38 Canvas ad coquinam. 42-45. see also London. 30-3 1 Cherries. 40. king of France. 8 0 Catalan cookbook . 19.Index Candles. 67. household. 22. Knives. 92 Communion. 150. Vinegar Confections.

2. in time of famine. of peasants. editorial error s in. 6. Pestilence. 102. see Cattle Craft workers. 88. paleography and. 124 . see also Cookery books. 57 Deschamps. 40. 41—42. 68-69.178 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe Diet. 152-54 Dinners. a composer. 74-75. 109. 11 Dog meat. consumption o f grains in. 101-5 . 38 Doreward. Syphilis. Eustache. modern misconception s abou t medieval. 161. 171 Darlington. 29. 28 Eddius Stephanus. 120. 130 Dives and Lazarus . county of. 102. x. 96. Champagne. 57-60. 37. 33. Durham. 18. as sign of social class. 22-23. Gin. Murrain. 11 6 Cynewulf. Durham. 41-42 Curlews. co . 8. 69. 12 8 Demophon. 140. 53 Droughts. 170-71 Derbyshire Peak. 47. 153. see also Chalices Curds. 128. Food as part of wages. Whiskey. Milk Dairying. 37. Alessandra . 104 Cups and goblets . seealsolce crea m Crepes. 91-92. Brandy. see Peasants. 166-67 Dung of doves. see also Leprosy. courdy and peasant . 173 Daniel. 172 Cornwall. 76-82 Dietary laws and legislation . as food. Recipes Cumin. 38 Curye o n Inglysch. see also Dining Eating houses. Worcestershire. 33. Typhus Dishes. Food. 105. 137. Guillaume . oat consumption in . 34. provenance of. 167 Dufay. 1 0 Dace. monastic. social function an d hierarchy of. 11-12. 11 Dante. 126. 97-99 Drink and drinking . see Food as part of wages Dioscorides. dung of. 78.John. 37 Dairy products and recipes. Warwickshire. 25. 69. co. 43 Costumes. 93-94. 110-13. Malt. 99-100. 19. 38. 105-6. for workmen. 116 . 7. Cider. 19-20 . 149-50 D'Este family. 101. 76. 160 Costrels. 108 . xi. 173. se e Famine Debt litigation. manuscript depictions of. 62. see Artisans Cream. 48-49 Cows. Ew ardaunt. 99. 63. se e Benedictine Rule. 15 Dining. 46. 42. changes in. area north of. 116. medieval. 167. Roman. 7. 161-62 . 33 Crime. see Darlington East Anglia. 43. 31 Edward II. 38 Databases (computerized) . see Dung Dredge (mixtur e of barley and oats). 136. Water. Life o f Wilfrid. Beer. 9-12. 126. 39. see Harvest yields Cucumbers. Yorkshire (West Riding). 171 Coventry. as food. 36. Mead. 17. 124. Milk. 89 Courtly culture. as object of parody. 28 Cuisines. see also Butter. kosher . Wine Droitwich. 106-7. 13 4 Crop yields. king of England. unedited. 5. of poor in towns. 73 Cromwell. 6. 67. Eggs. 40. 57 Corteccia. Slapton . and dietar y science. 151 Disease. 73-74. 45 Dill. see Cooks an d cookshops. 15 . 80 Domesday survey and book . se e also Vita Edwardi Secundi Eels. 160 Court rolls . Lad y Margaret. 109. strange. Cheese. 88. 122. 66. 116. legislation Dijon. 120. pigeons or cows. 92. king of England. 57-58. Drunkenness. Food. 1 2 Edward I. 95 Duets and quartets . 139 Doves. Buttermilk . 16 . 87. Ice cream. Curds. of aristocracy. 127 Dance. 133 Doncaster. 53. 20. 119. 13 0 Dearth. 80-82 Durham. 70 Eating. 151. see Tablewar e Distribution systems for food. seasonal. 1 . 16 0 Devonshire. 99 Demesne account rolls. repertory of . see also Exeter. 73. see also Ale. 51. se e Weather Drunkenness. 104. 162 Culinary manuscripts. Cream .

28. and gender . 65-67. 47.113. 12. xi. 39. 49. 54. Cambridgeshire. Oi l Faversham. 44-45. Dace . as proportion o f income. Description o f London. Costanzo. 16. colouring. 66. 159-60. Perch. 12 . Littl e Horkesley. 140 . xi . 100 Fishponds. sources of. se e Lard. 29. Codling. caloric content of . consumption patterns. 160 . 75-76. consumption of grains in. 92. inefficient us e of . 35. 16 . xi. 41-42. 15 . 61-62. 169 Folklore. 33-37. 56-57. 1 9 Fitz Stephen. lady of Clare. a s part of wages. Cookery.140. 48 Fables. 41-42. Sex Foods. retired Elizabeth I. Shrimp. 20. 50. Pike. 29. Food an d drink. 73-84. 139 Finches. military. seafish. 1 9 Epidemics. and health . 57. Sir John. 36-37. 109. Condiments. Fasts. Farm workers. 170 . 44. see Almond milk. 38-39. 20. Yorkshire. Feasts. 33. 164 . 60. 138 . 73. Roach. Lamprey. Sir Thomas. 22. 29. Fricasee. se e Adam and Ev e Ewardaunt. 30 Eggs. 67. 17 . 124. Middlesex. 31-33. 100 Feast days of the church . doles of. 39-41. 20.Index Egg sellers. Crepes. 20. 141. 32. prices. 82 (see also Grain prices). 38 148 179 Fines of brewers. Fish. see Harvest and far m worker s Farming i n south eas t England. 13. 92. Shellfish. 159-74. 108. 3 6 Elyot. 80.172. 36. 14 3 Food. Bream. Haddock . 41 . sgtfMea t Floods. 13. 22-26 (see also Widows). se e London. 28. see also Omelet Elderly persons. Romford Ethelred. Fritters. 41-4 2 Flesh. Entremets. 15-26. Maldon. an d drink . of nobility. needed to supply London. ix. 33-38. 53-55. 10 . 69 Famine. 31 Flans. 173 . 121 Foix. Eel. 110-1 1 Epicureans. Herring. 137 Feasts and feasting . household o r commercia l stocks of. 8. salt. see Almonds Endive. 16. see also Lenten fast . 19. wedding feasts. 39-40. unwholesome. 49. 120. 21. Eating houses. Cod. unwholesome. x. 16. 39. 152 Emeles. 121. 66-70. 120. 163. 15. see Disease Escoffier. 170 Flour. 53 Elizabeth de Burgh. Baked goods. guild feasts. fast. x. 152. 120 . Foods. 99 Enseignements (c . 134 Elsworth. 15. 15 2 Entertainment an d dining . xi. Peasants. 59. 69. 73 Eve (biblical figure) . see also Board (meals). 1300). xi. 69 Fishmongers. see Centre fo r Metropolitan Histor y Festa. 112-13 . 58-59. 120-21. Drink . 22. 109. Salmon. 87. Dairy products. 161. 60. 165-66. 13. Stockfish. 88-89 . 39. . caloric content of. 31 . 145 Essex. Fats. 120. 33. peasant. Recipes for fas t days Fats. Food. legislation concerning. fresh. Coal . 165 Family. 102 Exeter. 35-36. Frittata. 160 Figs. 68. Gaston de . 172 Energy. see Charity. 89-90 Firewood. 30. 171 Fodder. music of. 31. Blancmanger. seasonality of. William . prepared. 33-34. see Weather Florence. Auguste . 47. 35-37. Kent. 27-51 . 28-29. 31. distribution. 118. pickled . see also Anchovies. medicinal effect s of . 2. 68. 50. firewoo d consumption i n Fish. 67. 135-36. proverbs concerning. depictions of . 26. 122. 19. Frogs. j^^Ethelred Etymology of food names . 112-13 . see Charcoal. see also Colchester. 12. 96 Fasts and fasting . 67-68. kosher. Gurnard. 165-66 'Feeding the City' . 51. 29 . 1-13. 140. Devonshire. 69. 146 Folengo. Fuel Enfield. 63 . 75. 96 Flan makers. 94. see also Music Entremets. 168 Florio. Famine. in pasties. Trout Fishlake. 59-61 . Porpoise. 107 Eucharist and communion . 92. 79.78 Eusebius. queen o f England. 58-59.

and furnishing s of. 51. see Beans. Worcestershire. Wheat Grand D'Aussy . 19. 102 Ginger. 161-63. 45 Gin. see Hall. Pottage . Porridge. 36-37. Pasta. Parish Gurnards.Jeu d e Robin e Marion. 24. 'Garbage'. 100. Lincolnshire. 58. see also Winchester Harps and harpers . 45 Geographical location s theory. 160 Fritters. picked by poor. Meat. Adam de \&. 92 Genital organs. Thomas. 48 Friars. 139. 148 Galantine. Soups. Raisins. 60. prices. 23. Oatmeal. 130 . 3 3 Fruit. 7 3 Gordon. see also London. 63. 18 Grain. Berries.142. 126. 22. Thrushes. pope. 56-57. Surrey. 136 . Nuts. Pierre Jean Baptiste le. 28. Alice. Mirour de I'omme. 37 Haddock. 45. 57. 36-37. 69 Garland. Mancorn. 5. 121-22 . Snipe. Morgan. 34. Pasta. household stocks of. 37. bread corns .120. 129. 31 Grossteste. 43 Guesclin. se e also Apples. Herons. Rabbits. 16 8 Frittata. 111 . Partridges. 167 Ham. 57. 31. 36. 113 Galen. Table linens. sauce. 58. Bertran d du. 130 Hampshire. monasti c (refectory) . Poultry. 109 Geese. 53. 87 . 63. 22. 66. models. 42. Fouler. Vegetables Forestallers and regrators . Malt. 35. 92-93. 151 . 88. 19. 91-92. Curlews. 13 7 Fraternities. Si r John 71 . Pears. se e Ribald jokes. 38-41. 127. brewing corns. 29 Garnishes. see Peasants. 45 Hall. 138 Gower.120-21. 26 Goats. see Jellies Gender. 102 . retired. in London. see Kids Goblets. 28 . 20. 12 9 Gardens. 153 Guests. 59-62. 55 . Rice. Nuts . 88. 31. 23 . green. se e Parish fraternities Free bench (fo r widows). Salad. Lechemetes. 67. 56-57. see also Charcoal. 137 Grye. 11. Oats. Grain. 118. Bernardu s de. merchants. 77-79. 54. 69. 111 Fuel. see also Bitterns. Pasties.109 Gregory XI. 15 1 Fortescue.John. 21. Strawberries Frumenty. 22. 63. 102. 29 Garlic. 99. Spices. 42. see Cups Golden Legend. Cherries. Bartholomaeus de. 35. 142 Fricasee. Sex Genoa. Mallards. 124-25. 3 8 Grapes.141 Gelee. Flour. see Oxenhall Gluttony. 102. Robert. Boar. 18 Gough. 156 Grantham. Dredge. 42. 141-42 Hartlebury. 63. Finches.John de. William de. 37 Hainaut. 18. 155 Griddle cakes . 160. 1 . Bread. birds. 2. picke d by poor Gloucestershire. 4 0 Gardeners sellin g in London. Sweets. see also Barley. Venison. 25-36. Vox clamantis. 44-46. 17 .160. 140. 37. 57-58. 68 Fruit. 151 Galingale. for cooking . 22. Coal.3 Gingerbread. milling of. Figs. 29. Teals. 10 9 Frogs (cooked) .109. 142 Grymysby. annuities of. 33. 96. 69. Pheasants . see Hospitality Guilds. 37. Maslin. Frumenty. Grapes. Anglo-Saxon. Snails. Peas. 107-11. 70. 44 Forme of Cury. 113 Game (meat) . 18 Gleaning. Woodcocks 'Garbage' (offal) . 11 Halle. Margaret. 17.180 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe Geywood.3 Glanvilla. companies . 74.12. Quail. consumptio n o f pulses in. Larks . 46. Sauces. Peat Funeral meals . se e Food and gende r Genetic factors and intoxication . Peacocks. 131 George. Rye. Swans. John de. see Frumenty Furnishings. Hops. Game. Tableware Gabette(salt tax). 39 Furmenty. 31. mistembecor nysebeck. x. 55. Houses. Herbs. 29. 1-13. 37-38. Oranges.162. 55 .

139 Hucksters. se e Charity Household books and accounts. king of England. 3 8 Herring. 146-47 . 27 Heriots. king of England. king of France. Watford Hildegard o f Bingen. Oxfordshire . see also Huntingdon . 51. ix. celebrations. 113. Sorrel. 147 Jellies. see also Eating houses . 69 Julian o f Norwich. 123-2 4 Intoxication. Si r John. 63. 37. Wihtred Kids (goats) . Hearths. coronation feas t of. 42-45. see also Chickens Herbs. 53-71. Southwark. 126. 14 7 Jeanne d'Evreux. 76 Horses. 73 . 81 Judith (biblica l figure) and Judith (poem) . see Cooking utensils Kitchens. rooms in . a s food. se e also Inventories Households. 145-46. 142-43. 163 Hops. Thoma s and John sons of. Barnet. 8-10. 39. 19. 145 . xi. 44. Heinrich. 43. 68 Hinterlands of cities. Therfield. 38 Huntingdonshire. 45 Indigo. Leeks. 3. Ramsey Husbandry. see also Canterbury. Oxford. 36. 48-49. Jewish War. 48. 99. 149 Hunger. ordinances. 98. 19. 13 4 Horticulture. 32-33 . 28 . 24. Kitchens 181 Howard. seeTax assessment s Herons. 14 2 Ice cream. see also Hall. 81 Jesters. 79-80. 29 Kingston. 149. 129 Kitchen utensils. 65. 82. 103 Honey cakes. 12. 88. 142 . 73. wealthy. 53-55. Englis h campaigns in . 100 . 67 Hertfordshire. coronation o f Henry so n of. 42. 69 Ireland. 42-43. see also Famine. 67. Surrey. 171 . Parsley . ale-brewin g in. 51. Tabard In n Innsbruck. to colour food. 134-36. 42 . 1 Horsemeat. Huntingdonshire. 139 Inns. Pastoral husbandry Hykyn. see Brouet houssie Haute cuisine. Norfolk. 105 Hayne (van Ghizeghem). 66. 150. household. 151 Hochee. Food a s part of wages Hauceleamye or hauseleamye. 120 Henry IV . o f French court. 163 Humanism. Garlic. 48-49. 159 Humoural theory. see Drunkenness Inventories. 28. 74. 32-33. 41-42. and farm workers. 40-41. 59-60. 11 9 Houses. 111 Jerusalem. 12-1 3 Jugs. wines and barle y from. 88 Horns (fo r drinking). xi. commercial. see Norwich Juliana. see also Braziers. 94. 32. 24 Huntingdon. in large households. ecclesiastical. 124. 17 3 Joannitius. 4 5 Holywell. see Arable husbandry. Bartholomew. 169 Jacquerie. 33 . Royston. 68. 66. see also London. 170 Inquisitions post mortem. Regimen. 173 Ile-de-France. 73-76. 95. yields. 58. Savory. 112-1 3 Ingoldisthorpe. 13 9 Hens. Faversham. se e Gardens Hospitality. 11. 73. 174 Hingham. 59-61. 36-38. Ware. 18 John (Jean) . 94. 134-44 Hospitals. Sir John. furnishings of. 129-30 Henry II. 36. Oven s . see alsoDill. see Brouet houssie Holland. Paris Hippocrates. Onions. see also Aldenham.Index Harvest. 33. 58-59. 122. 94. king of England. 167 Hunting. Vegetables Herculaneum. 75 Isaac. 99. 32. 59. 48-49 Henley on Thames. 89. 34 . 98-99 . 44 Honey. king of England. 16 4 Henry III. 28 . 151-52 Hundred Years ' War. 48. 149 Josephus Flavius . 167 Hearths. 36 . 51 Henry V. 1 0 Kent.

44. 124 Locke. Thomas . Tableware Kosher food. patterns an d analysi s of. 48 gardeners sellin g in. 90 Assize of Building in. Westminster supply of food and fue l to . 92 companies of . 34. 10-11. 164 Lydgate. 41. 118-19. victuallin g companies. 16 7 Lovell. Candlewick Street. 30 centre o f consumption. Stamford Lindisfarne. 102 Mace. 31-32 . London Bridge. 141 Liver (a s food). St Jame s Garlickhithe. 96. 163 Larks. 87. 121-22. 47 London Lyckpenny. 118. Piers Plowman. Northumberland. 69 Legumes. 48-49 wills in. Lyons. 15. William . cornmongers . 39. 96. battle of. Bread Street. 53-54 London. 129 parishes in. 43. 168 Lenten fast . 35 Licensing and fines. 124-27 Langland. 29-30. 47-48 people of. 161 . Leicestershire. 36. see Pike Lucretius. monaster y at. 156 Love potions. 90. 48-49. St Mary-at-Hill. 111 Leeks. 130. 32. brewers. 34. ear l of. 120 . 130 food an d eatin g in. 17 3 Maintenance contracts . 104 Litde Horkesley. 16 1 Knives. 43 annals of. 30 firewood consumption in . se e The Battle of Maldon Mallards. 28 Leyburn. Tyburn. 88 Lincolnshire.John. 47. 48-49 workmen in . 51. 42. 117-31 street-cries in. Shrewsbury. 118 . 89 Lincoln. 112-13. St Martin Vintry. town house of abbot of. 29. 1 1 Liquorice. Abchurch Lane. koshe r Labourers an d landles s workers. tow n house of abbot of. 49. 91. 30. 29-35. 29-34. 63. 168 Lyons. 51 suburbs of. woodmongers . 34. 96. 96. see also Mutton Lampreys. 37-38 Last Supper. 28 travellers to. Dowgate. 30. 40. 36-37 Lancaster. 139 Lubeck. 31. 90 tolls in. Malcher. 51 Louis XV. 37. 127. 93. 43. Ramsey. 51. Cheapside. 32-33 Lydeton. Guildhall. goldsmiths. see Grymysby. Richard. 12. 3 1 Lent. Queenhithe. 32 . 33 . 136-37 Lard. Agnes. see also Harvest and far m workers Ladles. 89. 30. see also Beans. x . Thomas. pastelers (pi e bakers). se e Grantham. 49. se e Food. 42. 163 Lamb (Chris t as). 99-100.182 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe 'free bench' of widows in.17 2 Livestock. Eastcheap. 38-40. 12 . see also Cooking utensils . Essex. 96-99.25 Lavender. 67. Walmesford. 76. Peas Leicester. John. Holborn. 31. 60 Leprosy. 37. Henry de places and house s in. 23. 58. 38 Malleus maleficarum. Vintry. king of France. 138 Macaroni ('macrows') . 67. 36. 43. 10 . 88. Thomas . 69. countes s of. 39-40 . Richard. 30. 24-26 Lambs. St Benet Fink. Ironmonger Lane. Essex. 160. 51. 119-20 population of . 14 3 Maldon. 78 Land use.51 fire of(1212). 117-31 taverns in. 155 . 130 cooks and cookshops in . see Dives and Lazaru s Lechemetes. Mockyng. 32. Sir Roger. 32. 137. 90. 20. 18 Lettuce. 34. 38-40. 141 Lazarus. se e Trave and traveller s l widows in. Friday Street. William de. 51.22. Robert (Alic e de Bryene's son-in-law). 41. 20 Madrigals. se e Southwark. 45 Luce. 32. se e Peasants retired . 18 . 33 poor of. 38.John. ear l of. 95-96. 121 region an d hinterlan d of . 39.

122. 160-75. 120 . 125 Manna. 53 Menagier d e Paris. 44. 29 . Peasants . 41. 68-69. Julian of. 109. 167. 31-32. 22. 167. daily . Food. 99 . se e Fritters Mockyng. William son of . 120 Milk. 14 2 Mawmenny. Tripe Medical manuscripts. Norwich . 161-62 . 30. 170 Mayhew. x-xi. 2. see also East Anglia. 67. 69. 159-61 . 17 2 Middlesex. 92-93 Ma'muntya. 172-73. Feasts. 42. see also Lambs. see also Grain. 20 Maundy Thursday. Hingham. 121 . see also Almonds. 56-57. 26. fresh. recipes for. 35-37. 163 Mustard sellers . . Beef. Gonzaga court of. 9. Giovanni. 138 . 88 . 68. 102 . Nottinghamshire. see Dinners. 135 159-60. 109-10 . Thomas. 143. Famine Mortimer. 3 3 Model of farming systems. Suppers. cathedral priory . 46. earls of. 46. for workmen Norfolk. Miche l de. 19. 44. Edmund. 104 Mead. Yeavering Northumbria. 173 Musicians. recipe s for . 11 4 Mancorn. Dame Katherin e de. 44. 57. errors in. 146 Marriage. 125 Masons. 99. Pate. Olivier de la. 22. Westminster 183 Migration and mobility . 97. 3-7. Robert . 100-1. 141 Newark. 136 Nuts. Cesare. Robert le . 163 ' Marmousets'. servants and labourers . 40 Nuns. Pistachios Nysebek. views of diet. 171 Manuscripts. 56-57. Etienne. 36. 164 Nappi. portion of . Pasties. 11 9 New Year's feast. estate accounts. 16. 143. marriage s of Marrow bones. mythology . 109. consumptio n o f grains and pulse s in. 64. 170. 16 8 National wealth. 141. 152 Medici family. 'Menagier' o f Menus (medieval) . Dining. 32 Mazers. see Disease. 34-37. 147 March. 165-66 Market gardening. 134. 124. 45 Motets. 162-6 3 Mills and milling . William Edward. 16 . 112-14 Maximilian. 75-76. see also Enfield. 47 Masque at wedding feast . 120 . 14 6 Nonsiens (nuncheons ) o r none mete. 31. 109. 65 . Baccio. Horsemeat. 43. London Labour and the London Poor. 95 Montaigne. 33-37. 88. 142. 44 Mutton. 76 Norton. 133-34 .3 Meals and dining . omitted o n fast days. 127. 24 . 38 Masconi. Walter. Sheep's fee t Myth and allegory . 138-40. 174 Narvaez. ear l of March. 142 Mantua. 34. Game . 165. 58-59. se e Fritters . 20 Manors and manorial system. 47. se e also Newark Northumberland.114. 25 Norwich. 160 . as social occasions. 96-98. 29. 'Garbage'. 3 8 Noble status and nobles . 59 Note. milling of Mistembec. 30 . 121. Margaret . Luys de. 164 Mortality. 33. Sprowston Northamptonshire. manors of . malt prices. style of. 101. 16 0 Maslin (ry e and wheat mixture). 41. 127 Monastic diet. 50. Newcastle-on-Tyne. Dinners. 151. 93-94. Norfolk. Cristoforo. se e Lindisfarne. Northamptonshire. 67 . 135. 173 Messibugo. Uxbridge. 169-7 0 Medicine. 45 Nottingham. 161 Mass. 38 Morton. 129. 37 . emperor. se e also Tableware Mead. 144. 97.Index Malt and malting . 164-66. see also Board. Pork . Breakfasts . 163. Henry. Cat. Relations of Divine Love. 97 . 3 8 Newcastle-on-Tyne. 160 Motekyn. see Mortimer Marche. 114. Liver. 97-100. 89. 167-68 Musical instruments. Lechemetes. 38-39. Poultry . 5 5 Norwich. harvests an d harvest workers of. 129 Markets. see Culinary. 39. 166 Mustard. 172 Murrain. 35-36. 79-80 Music at feasts. Tabl e Meat. se e Feasts. see Paris. see also Bake mete. 16 7 Moschini. English Medieval Feast. 111 Meringues. 90. 73. 35-36. 44 Mustarder. Medical Marcel. Dog Frogs. 12. 164. Northumberland.

Cooks. Reginald. 163 Olives. 128. see Pasties. 59. street-cries of. Bakers. 39-40. Spicers. 2 2 Pigeons. culinary terms in . see Langland Pies. 148-49. Flan makers . Taverners. 53-71. Pottage . 18 Peddlers. Vintners . 171-7 2 Petronia Proba. 168 Pheasants. Brewers. see also Villages. 66. 25 Petrarch. Pasties Pasties and pies. 41. Worcestershire . 164 . Grai n merchants. 10 5 Onions. 18. Sausag e sellers. Sex Occupations. retired. 44. Chronica majora. 167 Pichon. Pottage. duke of Burgundy. 109. 55-57. 49-50. Reule ofCrysten Religioun. 18 Peacock. 42. se e Hucksters Pepper. 107. 32. 68. see also Occupations. 92. Butchers. 45. 172 Pancakes. 17 3 Orchards. Waferers. 27 Ovens. 173. 41. Jesters. 4 1 Partridges. 12 . 68. 28-29. Traders. 35-41. Labourers . Carpenters. oat. 60-61.45 Oakington. 36-37. 160 Omelet. Woodmongers Offal. 168 Oranges. 28 . garnishes. 28. see also Black Death. 35 . 'Menagier' of. Fishmongers. 126 Pastry. maintenance agreement s of . 28. 33. Gardeners. 29. 34. 37 Pasta. 41. 57 Oatmeal. Pudding sellers . 16 5 Owl and th e Nightingale. 17 1 Parsley. 28. Clot h workers. 151 Parish governanc e an d fraternities . 29. food in . 167. 162. 41. 94. Servants. 3 8 Philip IV. 53 Oxfordshire. 154. 31. 140 . cultur e of. 165. 116 Original Sin. see also Bread. 35 Pears. 173 Padua. 69 Onion soup. 57 Oats. 97-98. king of France. dung of. Dredge. Harves t and farm workers. 37. 4 2 Pestilence. 76. 35. 32 Paris. Cornmongers. Hucksters. Sententiae. goods purchased by. hinterland of . 68 Perth. roasted . Eg g sellers. and Odhecaton. 51. pease Peasants. 69. se e 'Garbage'. se e Ribald jokes. 66. 34. 54. 41. 21 Ostia. 19 . 37. 161-62. 51. 14 2 Obscene humor . Cambridgeshire . 32. 79 .16 5 Philip VI. 167 Paulus Aegenita. 57. 167 Philip the Good . cultivation of. Cheesemongers . 21. picked b y poor villagers. editor of Tirel. 70 . 66. see also Baked goods Pate. 31. 174 Oxenhall Manor . 30 Obits and anniversaries . 29. 173 Peas. Liver. Poulterers . 51. duk e of Burgundy. Sauce makers. 35. Scotland. 102-3 Oxford. king of France. 34. 33. 31. 55. 34. oatmeal Oat sellers . see also Pastelers Pastoral husbandry . 53-71. 99. 145 Piers Plowman. 58-59. 63 Pecock. 65. living standards of . 44. 36-37. Jerome. 38 Perch. 88. Mustard sellers. 102. 126. 32. 41. 146-48 . companies of . 56-57. 5 5 Oatcakes. Disease Peter Lombard . 171 Petrucci. 153 Philip the Bold . 163. se e Ale wives. 172 Pastelers (past y or pie bakers). 174 . Tripe Oil. Gloucestershire. 48. for malting. 126. 28-29 . 57 . 49. see also Henley on Thames. Butter sellers. 44-46. Oxfordshire . 165. 42. poverty in Peat. Artisans. Oat sellers. 169 Paris. 31-33. London . Forestallers. 38. 13 8 Oxford English Dictionary. diet an d food of . x. 162 . 163. green. Oxford Oysters. Masons. 99 Parody. 102 . 64. 143. annuity allowances of. 46. 69 Ordinance of Pottage. 60. 43-44 . Pastelers. 50 Ovid. see Dung Piglets. 117 . 59-60. see also Bread. o f beans an d peas . 130.184 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe Parliament. Pastelers Pig's head. Matthew. 68. marriages of. 164. 37 Pershore.

rye. j^Tirel Royston. 37-38 Pulses. 141-42 see also . 148 . see Diet. Boccaccio . The Siege of Jerusalem. Hens . 29. 36-37. 114 Pistor. The Dream of the Rood. 128. 116 Refectory. 33 Prices. 110-11. Temperenc e Regional studies. 19. 120. for fast days. 114 Portents. se e Beowulf. 57. 64-67. reconstruction of . 42. 27. 116 Restaurants. 29 Ritual. 45-46 Rents. modern and confused wit h medieval. 46. 81 Provence. Sausag e Porpoise. see Eating houses Ribald jokes and allusions. 56-58. 95 Preserves. 109. see Towns. of England. Christ I. Cooking. The Husband's Message. 27 Population. 38-40. 34. 35. Pork Pike (luce) . Culinary Records of cooking. 160 Ramsey. x Roach. 30-31 Poultry. London. 37 Robert II of Artois. 22. 105. 43-44. see also Brouet houssie. rents in Repertoire des manuscrits medievaux contenant des recettes culinaires. 55. 61. 39. see also Acton. Agnes la. see London. The Owl and the Nightingale. 39. 164 Pullets. monastic Regimen. 89. Christine de. 151 Rissoles. Hertfordshire. 30. 109. dance s of . William. Towns. Villages Praetorius an d th e Syntagma musicum. 56-57. king of England. 92. Maslin . Geese.166-67 Ross. Malt prices. 161 Rokewood. see also Se x Rice. Matteo. 29. 101-2 . 172 Radishes. Chaucer. 3 4 Prodigies. 155 Poll tax. published and unpublished . Game. The Wanderer Poison. 139. 34-37. see Forestallers Reims. 35. 139 Rampolini. 101. Dante. The Exeter Book. earl of (1303) . 45. 141. 59. see Prophecies and portents Prophecies an d portents . Pigs.23. abbo t of. 93. Peas Quail. brawn. se e Prophecies and portent s Posnets. 57. Roman de la Rose.Index Pigs. 63 Ruzzante (composer) . j£«Tax assessments Polyphony. 57-59. The Ruin. se e also Sausages Pulci (author-composer) . 21. see Food prices. 14 2 Rabelais. 44. London Lyckpenny. The Battle of Brunanburh. Soups and stew s Poulterers. 101 . 169 Preaching agains t heavy drinking. 37 Royal households. 170-71. Towns Pork. 113-14 Richard II. 155-56. see Cooking utensils Pottage. Pullets. 126. 148 . 101-16. Daniel. 117 Regratere. Doves. see Baker Plague. 44 Regrators. 43 Pots and pans .40 Pilgrims and pilgrimage. Rabbits Poverty. Essex. see Beans. 44-46. 125. annuity allowances of. j^Hall. 59. 79. 16 8 Pompeii. barley or bean . 164-65 Rome. 48 Rondeau. see also Bread. 22. Puddings. 16 1 Roman de Fauvel. see also Capons. Juliana. 50-51. rye. Towns. 121. Langland. 17 Rabbits (conies). 172 Quodlibet. Gower. Huntingdonshire. 139 Roman de la Rose. see also Cookery. 162 Puddings and puddin g sellers . 27-28 Romford. 169 185 Rabanus Maurus. 160-64. 77 . 41. Christ and Satan. 104 Recueil de Riom. 38 Rushes. The Fight at Finnsburgh. 112-14. 35-38. 24. 164 Radicchio. 37. 41. rents in Prisons. 172 Raisins. 57. Chickens. 171 Pistachios. 28 Pisan. bacon an d ham . an d Blac k Death. The Battle of Maldon. The Fortunes of Men. 173 Rye and ry e bread. 31. 97-98. 36 Recipes. 3 5 Porridge. Grain prices. see also Piglets. 67. Judith. 15-26. Pigeons. 31-32. se e Blac Death k Poetry.

89-9 1 Southwark. see Peasants. 33 Snipe. 1. W. 34. 32. Bury St Edmunds. 20 St Juliana. 19 4 Stawberries. 4. 67. 163 Sprowston. 44. 136 Sumptuary laws. 136 . 94. 151 Scrivener. Shropshire. 41. 32. Tabard Inn in . 67 Sutton Hoo . Sir Thomas. cider and al e in. see also Acton. Mace . Worcestershire. see Class Somerset. 35 . Saffron . 143 St Wilfrid o f Ripon. 60. 174. Wells Sorrel. 21 Stjohn Cassian . 29-30 Street-cries. 3 6 Stow. 38 Sobriety. see also Oysters Shepherd. Roger. 101 . Southwark Sussex. 15 9 Sacraments. j^Temperence Social class. 36. 39. standards o f living in Starvation. 75. Margaret. see Famine Statute of Labourers. 56-57. see also Cheddar. abbo t of. see also Perth Scott. 29 Sin. 1 Sabadino (composer). 10 9 Soups and stews. Surrey. 33. 19 Servants. 14 0 St Julian. Survey o f London. 117-18. 21. 15 . see Soups Stews (ponds). Sutton Ho o Sugar. 14 0 Sauce makers (saucers) . 137 Scola. Sugar Spoons. 167. Gingerbread. Cumin. Suffolk. Richard. 142 Suffolk. a s kings of carnival. 19. Kingston. 33-34. consumptio n o f grains in. John. 135 . 31. see also Puddings Savonarola. Galingale . 159 Salmon. 56-57. Lincolnshire. 141 Secreta secretorum. see Eucharist Saffron. 12-1 3 St Anselm of Canterbury. 42. 34. 12 St Edmund th e Martyr. 37 Shrimps. 21 Stjohn o f Bridlington. 53 Sampson. Babwell. 64. Dominica n house in. see Benedictine Rul e StCuthbert. consumption o f grains and pulse s in. 38 Standards of living. English wars with. 24. travel to. 44. 164 Salesbury. 11. 143. see Foo legislatio n d Suppers. Salt . see also Brouet houssie. see also Cinnamon. 42. 35. see also Gluttony. 117 Scop. 168. 164-65. 37 Salt. 140 St Thomas Becket . Cloves . 51. 32 Shellfish. 140 . se e Fishponds Stockfish. 39. 39 Supply zones for food an d grain. W. 21. and hypocricy . see Shrewsbury Siena. Ham. 80 St Benedict. Pepper. Mutto n Sheep's feet (cooked) . 27. 20 . 33. Michael. 172 Simnels. 161-62. 15 . 56. Towns. 37 . son of. Clare. 163 Sex and sexua l references and food . 112. 28. Taunton. 12. 38. 20. Suffolk . 169 . 69 . 50-51. 37-38. 39 Stamford. 29 StWalstan. 34. 37-38. 142 Shepherds. Sudbury. 37. 56. 30. 40-41 Spicers. 75-76. 31 Sauces. see also Bermondsey. 142 . see also Condiments Sausages and sausag e sellers. living standards of. 163. consumptio n o f grains in. 36-37 Saltwich. human. 171 Sudbury.186 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe Shropshire. bishop of Milan. 120 Surrey. 138 Servin (composer) . 88. Liquorice. 36. 12 St Ambrose. 32 Stews (culinary). 162 Shrewsbury. 48 Salimbeni (composer) . Agnes. Pottag e South eas t of England. 13 St Gregory the Great . East Anglia. Devonshire. 140 Snails (cooked). 12 Salad. 69 Spices. see also Ribald jokes Sheep. 17. 34 Scarecrows. 10 3 Skirrets (water-parsnips). Original Si n Skeat. Norfolk . 2. 169 Savory (herb). 37 Slapton. 25 St Augustine o f Hippo. 7 Scotland. 10 St Petronella. 33. Ginger. Mensa philosophica. 33. 11 3 St^theldryd. see also Lambs. 91.

64. 38 Thunen. 33 . presiding over royal kitchen. 126 Travel and travellers. 21 Venison. 111 . Johann Heinric h von. Meringues. 18 Table linens. 6 The Husband's Message. 16 3 Therfield. seeTirel. Knives. 138 Tarts. 15 Tacuinum o f Vienna. 116. 40 VerceUiBook. standards of living in. by water. 92-93. see also Markets Traders. 41-51. population of. 27-51.129. Legumes. 32. Confections. 101 Taunton. 93. Doge's Palace in. 47. rents in. 160. j««Talmache Tomatoes. Cabbage. 151 Taillevent.121-22. 12 . poll tax. 32-39. 146 . see also Candy. 107 Transport. 69. as middlemen. Viandier. 49. Roman. John son of.101. 155-56. 40. 129 Vailotte.109. 3 6 Thickener in a recipe. 1 8 Tacuinum sanitatis. 19. courtly status and social mobility. 159. 17 0 Valletus. 108 Thirst. 62 Union. coat of arms. Hertfordshire.119. 2. Olives. see also Costrels. Guillaume (calle d Taillevent') . 163. 36-37. and Venetian songs. 31 Tax assessments and heriots . Skirrets. 45 Typhus.Index Swans. 141 Sweets. 138. 12 Thrushes. 15-17. 187 sources for life. 61-62. 55-56 Syphilis. 39. Spoons Uxbridge. 174. Cucumber . John de. 45-46. 17 2 Tynnot. 109. Der isotierte Stoat.122. 127 Tinctoris. 27.125. 129 Transcription. 64. 29-30. 172 Towns. Preserves. 41. Onions. Spoons Tacuinum o f Rouen. 156 Thames. 17. 88 Viandier de Taillevent. 23.137 Tableware. 28. 147-49.J. 92. John. 141 Vendors and hawkers . see Hucksters Venice. Honey. Toffee Swinburne family. Middlesex. Radishes. 28. 153 Table manners. fresh.145. 145-46. 43. 42. 69. Endive . 29.John. 12. 44. 69. 58. 100. 49-51. 29. Thomas. 37.. see also Artichokes. 140-4 1 Sybily. Knives. 32. Somerset. see Cooking utensils. 146-47 . 2 The Siege of Jerusalem. Peas. 94 Vegetables. Sugar. se e Tirel . bourgeois background. 172 Truffles. 145. Sir Henry. 156 Veal. problems of. 15. 90. 145-51. 107 Translation o f recipes.153-55. Jellies.120. 100. 2 . 7 The Fortunes of Men. 166 Urban economic development.118-19. 3 The Ruin. 95-96. 69. Beans . chronicle of. 48-49. Leeks. 142 Veere. 10 4 Tolls on foodstuffs . 57 Taverners. 6 Theatre.John de. 58. 11 The Exeter Book. Cups and goblets. 7 3 The Wanderer. 47. 37. 98-100. 117 .152.121. current scholarship on. 82 Tromboncino (composer). Tomatoes.John.130 Thatching. 145-57. 58. Spices. 32-33. 38 Temperence. 27. poverty in. 55-56 Valois dynasty and court . 171 Trout. 3 The Fight at Finnsburgh. 5-6 The Dream of th e Rood. Mazers.156 Toffee.136 Tripe. Watercress Vegetarians. Guillaume Talmache. 34. 168 Trokelowe. 64. 169 Tirel. Truffles. Salad.137. 1 1 Verjuice. 1 3 The Battle ofMaldon. 2 8 Tolmache. mills and tol l corns of. 151 . Posnets. Richard. 42 Taste and culture. 50-51 Teals. Jugs. Fruit .139. 13 7 The Battle of Brunanburh. Radicchio. 27-29.117 Utensils for cooking and eating . Lettuce. 22-23. 63.

see also Food as part of wages Waldegrave family. 29 . vineyard at . 28 . 172-73 Virgil. Yorkshire.126 Vikings. 76 Worcester. 31 Wissant. 63. 44. se e also Bewdley. 99. Thomas. 47-48. 45 . 97-98. 2 9 Wages. 44. see Berkeley Warwickshire. 89 Woodcocks. see also Markets. 38. 50-51. Hampshire . Juan Luis. 174 Virtues.142. poverty in. 1 York. Grai n prices. 62. 31-32. Peasants. 69. 93-94. 62. 12. Worcestershire. Gascony. Middlesex. 88. and food. Hertfordshire. 136 . the Rhine an d Rochelle. English campaigns in . bars (Roman) . 64-65. king of Kent. causing harvest failure . see Skirrets Water transport. 22. 50. 142 Waferers. wBryen e (Alic e de). 67. 60. 54. 165 Vives. 32 Violla. see Vegetables Yeavering. Richard. 12 Wills. 36 . Guillaume de la. 28. 17 1 Virgin Mar y and music . countess of . 41. 31 Wafer. Bromsgrove. 77-80 Weddings. Francois. 142. 10 VitaEdwardi Secundi. 75 Walmesford. 55. 43. 137 . Parish Ville Neuve. annuity allowances of . 9-12. 74-78. Agnes. 173. Jacques de. 88 . 66. 17. 88. 64—66 . Worcester Worts. of Alsace. 40-41 Warner. 60 . 33. 46-47 Westminster. 42. 73-75. Oswald. 47. see Feasts Wells. see also Bread. rector of. 48 Wiltshire. 61-6 2 Windsor. 61. 46. 88 Wine. see Coventr y Washington. 53. Castle. Pershore. Martha . 135-36. 125. 102 Whytes. 20 . 35 Withersfield. 26. 92-93. Saltwich. 40. countess of. 68 Worcestershire. 41. 32. 104 Water (a s drink). composer. Fishlake . 42. 9 9 Wayfarers. 104. 44-46. Abbey. and socia l status. John. 83-85 Vitry. 35-36. irons. see also Alcuin Yorkshire. 34 . starch. 140 Wolkenstein. 135. 166-67.137 Wales. se e Travel Weather. Somerset. 29.188 Food and Eating in Medieval Europe Wheat. 32. 56. 50. 89. Paris street-cries of. Berkshire. 135 Winchester. estates of bishopric of. 95. Maslin Whiskey. 16 7 Women. 31 Waffles. York Zones of production. Food and gender . Henry de . consumption of grains in. Northumberland. Widows . 162 Water-parsnips. 57. Hartlebury. 41-4 2 Vinegar. 42. see Doncaster.126. population of. 95 Watercress. 130 Wool and woolle n cloth . 3. 68-69. 94-95 Viticulture. as brewers. 3 8 Woodland. Hertfordshire . composer. Droitwich. 42. Alfonso della. 13 9 Wihtred. Historia anglicana. 12 7 Woodmongers an d th e wood market. 61. 163 Vintners. Phillipe de . 35. 31. 128 Watford. 51 Villon. 28. 113. 68 . 22. Alice. 70. 150. 57. 14 0 Widows and widowers . 159 Wafer. 81. 82 Ware. 37-40. 28. 162-63. 102 Warwick. 34-38. 159-60 . 1 1 Villages. 39 Walsingham. 135.

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