The history of Wesel, a city in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany

The history of Wesel begins around 3000-700 before Christ. Tool and cemetery finds in gravel pits point to a population of the area in the Stone Age and Bronze Age.

The first verifiable population on today’s Wesel city area arose after the migration of the peoples and attained its importance presumably at the time of Charlemagne, King of the Franks, that is in the year 800. The name Wesel first appeared in a document dated 1 May 1065. In the book of documents is also a copy of documents from the 8th century in which the name Wesele appears.

At the beginning of the 12th century Wesel was already a transshipment point for goods from the Rhine to the Lippe and vice versa. With the elevation of Wesel in September 1241 by Count Dietrich, Wesel’s guarantee obtained a number of privileges, such as free inheritance, freedom at all sovereign customs posts, sole prosecution before the municipal court and a maximum of one day’s military service. The privileges were expanded until 1277.

While Wesel’s trade in the 13th century was limited …

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European Historical Economics Society 2011

There were some excellent presentations at the EHES this year, where some of the worlds leading historians, economists and economic historians gathered to share their thoughts.

The first video is excellent, Bob Allen of Oxford talks about why the Industrial Revolution was (in his opinion) a result of high wages and lower energy costs – which lead to a preference for technical innovation. Deirdre McCloskey of Chicago University offers excellent criticism in the questions at the end. Apologies for the sound quality, Bob had a tendency to move away from the mic and I wasn’t using a remote one.

In the next video Branko Milanovic talks about income distributions in the Mediterranean countries 2,000 years ago, and using very sparse data creates a compelling view of income from that time, what I took from this one was that income inequality has always been alive and well, a Roman Senator made about 500 times the wages of a regular worker (watch the video!).

Then there is a Roundtable discussion featuring the ‘who’s who’ of economic history

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