ABSTRACT

From the banquets of kings and nobles to the daily struggle for the subsistence of the poor, food was already much more than a biological necessity in the Middle Ages: it was a social phenomenon full of meaning. In this book all the implications and meanings that food had on the Iberian Peninsula between the 13th and 15th centuries are analyzed. Historical assessment of the region is particularly rewarding because of the quantity and variety of historical sources, and because of the coexistence in medieval Iberia of the three great monotheistic religions: Christianity, Judaism and Islam. Taking both economic and sociological perspectives, every aspect of food is analyzed, from the commercialization of food production to its consumption, and from the evolution of culinary techniques to table manners.

chapter |6 pages

Introduction

chapter 1|31 pages

Fighting for food in the great medieval market

Forms and problems of food supply

chapter 2|42 pages

From the fields to the marketplace

The first steps in medieval food production and distribution

chapter 3|24 pages

Avoiding the market

Medieval self-sufficiency, provisions, storage and the conservation of food

chapter 4|37 pages

The kitchen

Culture and flavor

chapter 5|28 pages

Around the table

The culture of dining objects and the rites of conviviality

chapter 6|40 pages

Eating according to status

Food as a symbol of social hierarchy

chapter 7|22 pages

The food of others

Religious minorities and food conflicts

chapter |8 pages

Epilogue