Economy and Nature in the Fourteenth Century

Money, Market Exchange, and the Emergence of Scientific Thought


This book provides perspectives on the ways in which scholastic natural philosophy anticipated and contributed to the emergence of scientific thought. Historians of medieval science have hesitated to step outside the sphere of intellectual culture in their search for factors influencing proto-scientific thought. This book searches for influences both within and beyond university culture, and argues that the transformation of the conceptual model of the natural world c.1260–1380 was strongly influenced by the contemporary rapid monetisation of European society. It analyses the impact of the monetised market place on the most characteristic concern of natural philosophy of the period: its preoccupation with measurement, gradation, and the quantification of qualities.
  • Cambridge University Press; February 1998
  • ISBN 9780511038495
  • Read online, or download in secure PDF format
  • Title: Economy and Nature in the Fourteenth Century
  • Author: Joel Kaye
  • Imprint: Cambridge University Press

In The Press

'Medievalists have neglected the history of ideas in our generation, but this study shows how it should be revived and practiced.' John W. Baldwin, The American Historical Review