Nov. 5, 1290

Disposition of Debts Due to Jews after Their Expulsion, decreed by King Edward I of England [England]: “Edward etc. to the Treasurer and Barons of the Exchequer, greeting. Whereas formerly in our Parliament at Wes minster on the quinzaine of St. Michael in the third year of our reign, to the honour of God and the profit of the people of our realm, we ordained and decreed that no Jew thenceforth should lend anything at usury to any Christian on lands, rents or other things, but that they should live by their commerce and labour; and the same Jews, afterwards maliciously deliberating among themselves, contriving a worse sort of usury which they called courtesy (curialitatem), have depressed our people aforesaid on all sides under colour thereof, the last offence doubling the first; whereby, for their crimes and to the honour of the Crucified, we have caused those Jews to go forth from our realm as traitors: We, wishing to swerve not from our former choice, but rather to follow it, do make totally null and void all manner of penalties and usuries and every sort thereof, which could be demanded by actions by reason of the Jewry from any Christians of our realm for any times whatsoever; wishing that nothing be in any wise demanded from the Christians aforesaid by reason of the debts aforesaid, save only the principal sums which they received from the Jews aforesaid; the amount of which debts we will that the Christians aforesaid verify before you by the oath of three good and lawful men by whom the truth of the matter may the better be known, and thereafter pay the same to us at terms convenient to them to be fixed by you. And therefore we command you that you cause our said grace so piously granted to be read in the aforesaid Exchequer, and to be enrolled on the rolls of the same Exchequer, and to be straitly kept, according to the form above noted. Witness myself at King’s Clipstone on the 5th day of November in the eighteenth year of our reign.”
English Economic History: Select Documents, Edited by Alfred Edward Bland, Richard Henry Tawney. Macmillan: New York, 1919. p. 50, Accessed online; Researched by Dominik Jacobs 5/2/2016