13 Annotations

David Quidnunc  •  Link

STOCK & GOODS IN A "LESS THAN MODEST HOUSEHOLD"

"My Goods and Money at August 1658 (Will Blundell)

-- 9 horses: £37
— 8 oxen and steers feeding: £40
— 2 bulls: £8
— 9 heifers: £30
— 113 sheep and lambs: £26
— malt: £6
— groats and oat meal: £1.15s
— bed frames, twenty five: £11
— trunks, chests, boxes, desks and presses: £11
— tables, chairs, forms and cupboards: £19
— 1 lead cistern: £4
— 16 featherbeds, sixteen: £48
— 6 chaff beds: £1.4s
— bolsters and pillows, blankets and coverings curtains, cushions: £51
— linens for the housewife: £48
— jewels, a watch and odd knacks: £9.15s

“I have so far paid my debts that the value of my goods exceeds them by £64.14s not reckoning new corn and hay. But reckoning new corn and hay, I am worth £208.14s.4d.”

http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/history/sceptred_is...

Paul Chapin  •  Link

How would a "less than modest" household have 25 bed frames, with bedding for 22?

David Quidnunc  •  Link

Gotta be a Brit thing. I'll never understand 'em.

Mary  •  Link

Perhaps 3 bedframes are for chance visitors or travellers who are expected to bring their own bedrolls with them? Or, maybe, you just fill an extra few sacks with straw when unexpected bods arrive.

vincent  •  Link

16 feather beds used, worth 3 quid a piece. In those days one had many extended family to run a place with that number of horses and livestock. Have need of many "off" spring and milking maids and lads to plough the fields and feed the other members of family who may or may not be pulling their weight. The 6 chaff beds were for the ladds rubbing down the 9 horses and keeping the sheep from mowing the flowers.
note the watch .

vincent  •  Link

from SP price of work in silver
bible which cost me 6s. 6d. the making, and 7s. 6d. the silver, which, with 9s. 6d. the book, comes in all to 1l. 3s. 6d.
Friday 2 November 1660

Pedro.  •  Link

From Liza Picard's Restoration London..

“He (Sam, 13th Jly 60) had, unknowingly, an indirect contact with the most prominent woman artist of the time…he had to pay £9 to a Mr. Beale whose wife Mary became the family breadwinner in 1670, charging £10 for a three-quarter portrait in oils, £5 for a head and shoulders.”

Chris Squire UK  •  Link

Here are the price indices for converting between 1660 and 2014:

Commodity:
real price = RPI/GDP deflator = 120
labour value = average earnings = 2,100
income value = per capita GDP = 5,200
…………..
Income or Wealth
historic standard of living = real price = RPI/GDP deflator = 120
economic status value = income value = per capita GDP = 5,200
economic power value = share of GDP = 29,000
……………
Project
historic opportunity cost = real price = RPI/GDP deflator = 120
labour cost = labour value = average earnings = 2,100
economic cost = share of GDP = 29,000

Taken from https://www.measuringworth.com/ukcompare/ which explains which index to use for different purposes. The important thing to grasp and remember is that using ‘real price’ by itself vastly understates the status and power that came with what seem to us quite modest sums of money in the pre-industrial society of 1660.

Example: Pepys’ net worth = £650 at 31 December 1662
http://www.pepysdiary.com/diary/1662/12/31/

Measured by historic standard of living = real price = 120 x £650 = £78,000

Measured by economic status value = income value = per capita GDP = 5,200 x £650 = £3.4 mn.

Measured by economic power value = share of GDP = 29,000 x £650 = £19 mn.

I have rounded these amounts to 2 significant figures as they are only estimates.

Chris Squire UK  •  Link

This replaces my post above from January 2016:

We have discussed this several times already. I’ve redone the sums to get these multipliers:

To compare the value of a £1 Wealth in 1664 to 1971, there are four choices. In 1971 the relative: 

historic standard of living value = £11
labour earnings = £80
economic status value = per capita GDP = £130
economic power value = £1,100.

To compare the value of a £1 Wealth in 1971 to 2015, there are four choices. In 2015 the relative: 

historic standard of living value = £13

labour earnings = £20

economic status value = per capita GDP = £25

economic power value = £30
………………………..
Multipliers 1664-2015:

historic standard of living = 11 x 13 = 140
labour earnings = 80 x 20 = 1600
economic status = per capita GDP = 130 x 25 = 3,300
economic power = 1,100 x 30 = 33,000

So in economic status, £1209 (30 Nov 1664) in 1664 = £4 million today - VERY roughly. This number seems about right to me but shouldn’t be taken too seriously as as it is only as good as the assumptions as to what is a valid comparison across 350 years and the methods used to estimate GDP. etc.

The cook’s £5 annual wage = £16,500 in economic status.

Taken and simplified from https://www.measuringworth.com/explaining_measu...

RSGII  •  Link

Of interest, glassdoor,com reports the current average salary for a cook in the UK is about £16,240, so the economic status hasn’t changed much in 340 years! Other sites give different current cook salaries, e.g. £23k, but it depends on the location and all in the same general range as Pepys cook’s current economic status.

RSGII  •  Link

The site reference in Chris’s piece, measuringworth.com, also has a very useful calculator where you can plug in the beginning date, e.g. 1664, the end date, 2016 (the most recent full year), the amount you’re starting with, say the £2.5 million Parliament appropriated for the Navy in 1664 , and it will provide you a table with the current equivalent values for different purposes, such as those noted by Chris, e.g. £2.5 million in 1664 is equivalent to £85 billion in 2016 in terms of its share of GDP.

Log in to post an annotation.

If you don't have an account, then register here.