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ACUH members Frans Camphuijsen and Nathan van Kleij will present work in progress on stone fines in the late Middle Ages.
Event details of Brick for an Eye, Lime for a Tooth: Stone Fines, Common Good and the Urban Fabric in the Later Middle Ages
18 January 2024
15:30 -16:15

Among the many legal oddities known from late medieval urban contexts, the practice of fining people in quantities of brick or other building materials has remained largely under the radar. Nevertheless, all over the late medieval Low Countries, from Lille in the south to Steenwijk in the north, and at varying intervals between the fourteenth and sixteenth centuries, people were asked to atone for their misdeeds materially. While practical considerations, such as the provision of city defenses, were a central motivator for such fines, they also sprang from a broader complex of social and cultural assumptions, in which a developing urban infrastructure intersected with the construction of a communal moral landscape for its inhabitants.

In their paper Frans Camphuijsen and Nathan van Kleij will present ongoing work on the topic, introducing a first survey of stone fines across the region as well as the many questions that spring from it. They will consider these fines in relation to the histories of brick production and trade, to specific large-scale building projects (or the lack thereof), and to the broader history of socio-legal message making and community building in late medieval towns.

Bushuis/Oost-Indisch Huis

Room F0.01
Kloveniersburgwal 48 (hoofdingang)
1012 CX Amsterdam