Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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Meat consumption
(967 words)

Meat consumption is an important indicator of the wealth and standard of living of pre-industrial societies because of meat's particular function as a source of protein and energy. Contemporaries already understood this, and historical research has reflected it. Because of the generally precarious nutritional situation in early modern Europe, meat was highly valued everywhere. Although the long-distance trade in livestock for slaughter (especially oxen), meat, and meat products was of subordinate importance, the livestock trade can be argued to have been the first…

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Hirschfelder, Gunther, “Meat consumption”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 18 November 2019 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_019279>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20190801



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