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Money in the Western Legal TraditionMiddle Ages to Bretton Woods$
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David Fox and Wolfgang Ernst

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198704744

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198704744.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 24 June 2021

The Last Scholastic on Money

The Last Scholastic on Money

Gabriel Biel’s Monetary Theory

(p.71) 5 The Last Scholastic on Money
Money in the Western Legal Tradition

Stefan Kötz

Oxford University Press

This chapter analyses the monetary theory of Gabriel Biel, professor of theology at the university of Tübingen at the end of the fifteenth century. Biel’s monetary deliberations form an integral part of his largest work by far, the Collectorium circa quattuor libros Sententiarum, a highly comprehensive compendium of scholastic theology and philosophy from a nominalist, Ockhamistic point of view. Accordingly, they are theological in nature, based on the concept of falseness and set in the specific context of sinful infliction of damage and compensation in view of penitence. The falsification of coins and other potentially falsifying actions involving money and coins are discussed. Biel’s core issue, however, is the alteration of coins and the sovereign’s right to alter coins so as to realize a profit. The chapter provides a detailed outline of the contents and investigates the sources Biel relies on and the concepts he is committed to.

Keywords:   Gabriel Biel, Nicolas Oresme, scholastic theology, monetary theory, falseness, falsification of coins, alteration of coins, debasement of coinage, sin, compensation

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