[Sca-cooks] Spices for preservation of meats

Suey lordhunt at gmail.com
Tue Nov 21 11:15:50 PST 2006

Hunger is the seed of commoners' revolts during the Middle Ages 
especially. In this particular case the John of Gaunts' third poll tax 
did trigger off the revolt of 1381 and Savoy Palace, one of his manors, 
as others, was burned down after it was sacked and peasants invaded his 
forests to take game as a result.
What is my reference(s) is (are) with all my English history notes in 
Madrid. Another reason for going back but due to airlines weight 
restrictions books especially are coming to my new home piece meal.
I do remember Jane Plaidy made a big thing out of hunger being the pith 
of the matter - at least in my eyes - in her novel about Katherine 
Swynford, John of Gaunt's lover who later became his third wife. As 
reading historical novels is my hobby, out of curiosity I check what 
seem to be facts to see if they true and indeed I have checked this 
Plaidy novel for this. In this case I found The Statute of Labor sowed 
the seed of hunger for prices increased after the Black Death while 
laborers' wages were frozen.
I did, however, find the Gregory Clark provides Table 3: Living Costs 
1200's to the 1560's by Commodity Groups in his article on "The 
Condition of Working Class in England 1209-2003 at 

which states that the percentage of the laborer's income spent on grains was
8.6% between 1340-9; 12.8% 1350-9; 12.8% 1360-6; 12.4% 1370-9 and then 
fell to 8.5% from 1380-9 as grain produced their "daily bread" I see a 
definite correlation between reasons the Peasant Revolt and these 
Back to spices, it is also to noted on this chart are pepper prices: 
196.1% between 1340-9; 334.1% 1350-9; 214.4% 1360-9; 254.9 1370-9; 
164.2% 1380-9. Over the same period salt prices are 23.1% between 
1340-9; 55.2% 1350-9; 46.3% 1360-9 and 52.9% 1370-9; 44.1% 1380-9. Meat 
and fish are not mentioned but we do know that salt was a primary 
ingredient in the preservation of them. Perhaps this indicates that 
lower classes could more readily prepare meat and fish for storing 
during the decade of the 1380's than in previous decades immediately 
following the Black Death if and when available.
Also see The Peasants’ Revolt 1381 Summary. Source: 
> I wrote: England's hunting restrictions were a definite cause of the Peasants'Revolution in the 14th century.I would be interested in references to this.  

> Terry Decker/Bear replied on Nov 20, 06: To my knowledge, the Peasants'Revolt of 1381 was triggered by the third poll tax (the third in four yearsunfairly implemented because of improperly kept or fraudulent tax rolls)and the Statute of Laborers (a regulation to fix the price of labor in a rising market following the Black Death).  The commons also wanted reforms of the Church, among them abrogation of their (often) unlimited control of the forest and the division of their charters among the commons.

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