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Economic and Social History Blog

labour productivity

Mills, Cranes and the Great Divergence

  Watermills, windmills, building cranes and harbour cranes were the high-tech inventions of the Middle Ages: expensive, but labour-saving machines that could raise labour productivity significantly. In an article in Economic History Review Bas van Bavel, Eltjo Buringh and Jessica Dijkman compare the prevalence of mills and cranes in medieval western Europe and the Middle…

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