Verena Weller has been a doctoral candidate at the Chair of Medieval History at the University of Mannheim since 2020. She is a scholarship holder of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation.
From 2013 to 2019, she studied History and Romance Studies at the Universities of Mannheim, Paris IV and Umeå. She was a research assistant in the DFG project “small-scale credit and market participation” in 2021.
Women have always been represented in all fields. Only in the field of economic history did it seem for a long time that women were underrepresented. The notarial registers from the 13th and 14th centuries of various economically important metropolises in southern France show that women moved independently in the economy.
This doctoral project is concerned with the study of women's participation as lenders, debtors, and decision-makers in economic affairs in the late 13th and early 14th centuries in Montpellier, one of the most important economic centers of medieval southern France. Although legal regulations in the late Middle Ages allowed women only limited opportunities to act, initial research of notarial registers revealed that women played a large part in medieval credit transactions there. In the practice of medieval business, the names of women as contracting parties, as buyers, and as heirs appear regularly in the sources.
The aim is to develop a meaningful micro-study of the economic activities of women of different social provenance in a large medieval city. In the specially created database FEM (Les femmes dans l ́économie de Montpellier médiévale), data on women in the credit economy of Montpellier (date, name, marital status, social status, total contract transactions amount of money) will be collected. Based on this compilation, the findings can be evaluated systematically and also quantitatively.