Book summary of : Nadia MATRINGE, La Banque en Renaissance. Les Salviati et la place de Lyon au milieu du XVIe siècle, Rennes, Presses universitaires de Rennes, 2016, 416 p. ISBN 978-2-7535-4956-2.
The existence of a powerful Italian merchant community in 16th century Lyons raises, from an economic history perspective, questions related to the convergence of opportunities offered by the marketplace and the commercial projects of firms that decided to settle there. To what extent did the activity of Italian businessmen condition Lyons’ economic life and how did Italian businessmen adapt to pre-existing economic structures? What relations did Italian banks in Lyons maintain with their Italian parent companies and what role did Lyons play in the business strategies of Italian firms at a European scale? Can we talk of a Florentine, Lucquese or » Tuscan » identity of firms, and how should it be defined in relation to other existing models of enterprise in the rest of the Mediterranean and Northern Europe? How did these forms of organization serve business activity conducted in Lyons? Finally, how did the different Italian banks deal with each other, and with other economic operators on the marketplace and in the French Kingdom?
This paper analyses the private records of a prominent bank in 16th century Lyons, that of the Salviati, to examine the role of the fair deposit in the financing of international trade. The fair deposit appears to be a flexible clearing instrument sustaining the auto- financing of European big business. The credit mobilized through deposit is mostly derived from international trade and banking, where it is instantly re-injected. Investments are stimulated by the numerous advantages offered by the Lyons fairs – ie. licit lending at interest, alternatives for investments, possibilities of purchases and rapid transfers – and by the confidentiality of Italian banks, which preserve the anonymity of their most important clients.
On the other hand, loans made to local and foreign businessmen nourish the trade of commodities and, above all, the exchange business abroad, conferring on Lyons a central position in the European trade and payment’s system. Such form of deposit banking is closely related to the development of banking firms working mostly on commission. However, the active role of these banks in organizing Lyons’ market as well as the interchangeability of positions between principals and agents, lead to a reexamination of the concept of financial intermediaries.
L’entreprise florentine et la place de Lyon : l’activité de la banque Salviati au milieu du XVIe siècle
Résumé de thèse, Nadia Matringe
Texte publié le 1er février 2014
According to a long historiographical tradition, which culminating in R. Gascon’s monumental 1971 study on Lyons, Italian businessmen completely dominated Lyons’ economic life in the 16th century. Paradoxically, this perspective holds the field despite a lack of adequate extensive research into the archives of Italian firms: the precise modalities of their intervention in the marketplace remain largely unknown. Certain crucial aspects in particular have been neglected, such as their banking practices — which are difficult to extract from notarial, juridical or fiscal sources. Their analysis through the bankers’ private records require a technical and tedious scrutiny, which can often deter many an academic historian. The adaptation of Italian firms to the pre-existing local economic structures, which was a sine qua non of the durability of their presence in the marketplace, also failed to arouse the attention it deserved. Nevertheless, these issues are essential to understand the functioning of the firms and the marketplace − which is why I have found it necessary to re-examine the role played by Italian firms in Lyons, using the archives of one of the most important of them in the 16th century: the Salviati Bank.
Les registres Salviati de Constantinople
Ingrid Houssaye Michienzi
Texte publié le 31 janvier 2014
Perdus au sein de l’immensité du fonds Salviati, trois registres de comptes rédigés à Constantinople entre 1491 et 1493 sont d’une richesse phénoménale pour tous ceux qui s’intéressent aux activités des marchands florentins dans l’espace méditerranéen. Jusqu’à maintenant, trois sources ont été utilisées pour étudier les Florentins et leur commerce dans l’Empire ottoman des XVe et XVIe siècles : les documents de nature officielle conservés principalement dans les archives de Florence recueillis et édités par Giuseppe Müller en 1879, les « morceaux choisis » de la correspondance de Giovanni Maringhi traduits en anglais par Gertrude R.B. Richards en 1932, et la chronique du Florentin Benedetto Dei qui voyagea au Levant dans la seconde moitié du XVe siècle éditée en 1985. Continuer la lecture →
Le registre Stella : le registre-bilan de la firme Salviati (1471-1517)
Le registre Stella, conservé dans la série III de l’archivio Salviati, est un registre comptable destiné à faire le bilan des différents livres compilés par l’ensemble des membres de la famille Salviati et des compagnies qu’ils dirigent et celles qu’ils ont dirigées. À ma connaissance, seuls P. Hurtubise, A. Carlomagno et R. Goldthwaite ont mentionné et utilisé le registre. Continuer la lecture →