The studies collected here centre on the social and economic life of medieval Germany, within a broader European context. The first three articles engage the day-to-day workings of rural society - literature, verbal attack and the language of mediated settlement of conflicts lead to a nuanced view of social hierarchy, in which the meek too have a say. The next group examines some major elements of rural life, dealing with technology, resources, ecology, transport, communication and credit. In the second part, the author focuses on the life of the Jews in Germany, first charting the process of settlement of Jews in Germany, the dynamics of social stratification and household composition, and the impact of economics and persecution on settlement patterns. A case study uncovers the motives and steps that led up to the expulsion of the Jews of Nuremberg in 1498. These themes are followed up into the early modern period, when German Jewry mostly came to live a village life. The last studies deal with the economic history of medieval European Jews, including professions other than moneylending, and with the function of women in economic life.