IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/nuf/esohwp/_097.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Prices and Production: Agricultural Supply Response in Fourteenth-Century England

Author

Listed:
  • Eric Schneider

    () (History Faculty and Nuffield College, University of Oxford, UK)

Abstract

This paper challenges the growing consensus in the literature (Stone, 2005; Dodds, 2007) that medieval English peasants and manorial managers were price responsive in their production decisions. Using prices of and acreages planted with wheat, barley, and oats on 49 manors held by the bishop of Winchester from 1349-70, we estimate price elasticities of supply for each grain in aggregate and on each particular manor. Aggregate price elasticities of supply for wheat and oats were not significantly different than zero, and barley aggregate elasticities of supply were significant but very low. These elasticities are low compared with price elasticities of supply estimated for developing and developed countries in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Attempting to explain the variation in the estimated price elasticities for individual manors, market concentration had a significant, positive effect on price elasticities of wheat and oat supply. In the end, the low levels of price responsiveness in the post-Black Death period suggest that commercialisation was not as dominant in the medieval English economy as has been argued. Thus, the institutional and structural changes highlighted by Marxist and Neo-Malthusian historians may need to take a more prominent role in explanations of medieval economic change.

Suggested Citation

  • Eric Schneider, 2012. "Prices and Production: Agricultural Supply Response in Fourteenth-Century England," Oxford University Economic and Social History Series _097, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
  • Handle: RePEc:nuf:esohwp:_097
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.economics.ox.ac.uk/materials/papers/5681/schneider97.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Alan de Bromhead & Barry Eichengreen & Kevin H. O'Rourke, 2012. "Right-Wing Political Extremism in the Great Depression," NBER Working Papers 17871, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Simon C. Holmes & Florian Ploeckl, 2012. "Bank on Steel? Joint-stocks and the Rationalisation of the British Interwar Steel Industry," Oxford University Economic and Social History Series _093, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
    3. Fisher, Franklin M & Temin, Peter, 1970. "Regional Specialization and the Supply of Wheat in the United States, 1867-1914," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 52(2), pages 134-149, May.
    4. R. H. Britnell, 1981. "The Proliferation of Markets in England, 1200–1349," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 34(2), pages 209-221, May.
    5. Florian Ploeckl, 2010. "The Zollverein and the Formation of a Customs Union," Economics Series Working Papers Number 84, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    6. Emanuele Felice, 2011. "The determinants of Italy’s regional imbalances over the long run: exploring the contributions of human and social capital," Oxford University Economic and Social History Series _088, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
    7. Eric B. Schneider, 2014. "Prices and production: agricultural supply response in fourteenth-century England," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 67(1), pages 66-91, February.
    8. Douglas A. Irwin & Kevin H. O'Rourke, 2013. "Coping with Shocks and Shifts: The Multilateral Trading System in Historical Perspective," NBER Chapters,in: Globalization in an Age of Crisis: Multilateral Economic Cooperation in the Twenty-First Century, pages 11-37 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Briggs, Chris, 2009. "Credit and Village Society in Fourteenth-Century England," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780197264416.
    10. Rui P. Esteves, 2011. "The Political Economy of Global Financial Liberalisation in Historical Perspective," Oxford University Economic and Social History Series _089, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
    11. Allen,Robert C., 2009. "The British Industrial Revolution in Global Perspective," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521868273.
    12. Philip Slavin, 2012. "The Great Bovine Pestilence and its economic and environmental consequences in England and Wales, 1318–50," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 65(4), pages 1239-1266, November.
    13. Jane Humphries, 2011. "The Lure of Aggregates and the Pitfalls of the Patriarchal Perspective: A Critique of the High Wage Economy Interpretation of the British Industrial Revolution," Oxford University Economic and Social History Series _091, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
    14. Simon C. Holmes & Florian Ploeckl, 2015. "Bank on steel? Joint-stock banks and the rationalization of the British interwar steel industry," European Review of Economic History, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(1), pages 88-107.
    15. David Stone, 2001. "Medieval Farm Management and Technological Mentalities: Hinderclay before the Black Death[I am grate]," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 54(4), pages 612-638, November.
    16. Scott M. Eddie, 1971. "Farmers' Response to Price in Large-Estate Agriculture: Hungary, 1870–1913," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 24(4), pages 571-588, November.
    17. Jane Humphries, 2011. "The Lure of Aggregates and the Pitfalls of the Patriarchal Perspective: A Critique of the High Wage Economy Interpretation of the British Industrial Revolution," Economics Series Working Papers Paper 91, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    18. Rao, J. Mohan, 1989. "Agricultural Supply Response: A Survey," Agricultural Economics of Agricultural Economists, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 3(1), March.
    19. Offer, Avner & Pechey, Rachel & Ulijaszek, Stanley, 2010. "Obesity under affluence varies by welfare regimes: The effect of fast food, insecurity, and inequality," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 297-308, December.
    20. Eric B. Schneider, 2011. "Evaluating the Effectiveness of Yield-Raising Strategies in Medieval England: An Econometric Approach," Economics Series Working Papers Number 90, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    21. Kowaleski,Maryanne, 1995. "Local Markets and Regional Trade in Medieval Exeter," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521333719.
    22. Askari, Hossein & Cummings, John Thomas, 1977. "Estimating Agricultural Supply Response with the Nerlove Model: A Survey," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 18(2), pages 257-292, June.
    23. Rao, J. Mohan, 1989. "Agricultural supply response: A survey," Agricultural Economics, Blackwell, vol. 3(1), pages 1-22, March.
    24. S. Ryan Johansson, 2010. "Medics, Monarchs and Mortality, 1600-1800: Origins of the Knowledge-Driven Health Transition in Europe," Economics Series Working Papers Number85, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
    25. Junichi Kanzaka, 2002. "Villein rents in thirteenth–century England: an analysis of the Hundred Rolls of 1279–1280," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 55(4), pages 593-618, November.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Eric B. Schneider, 2014. "Prices and production: agricultural supply response in fourteenth-century England," Economic History Review, Economic History Society, vol. 67(1), pages 66-91, February.
    2. Schneider, Eric B., 2013. "Real wages and the family: Adjusting real wages to changing demography in pre-modern England," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 99-115.
    3. Aled Davies, 2012. "The Evolution of British Monetarism: 1968-1979," Economics Series Working Papers Number 104, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:nuf:esohwp:_097. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Maxine Collett). General contact details of provider: https://www.nuffield.ox.ac.uk/economics/ .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.