West African kingdoms, such as the Soninke empire of Ghana and the empire of Mali that succeeded it, were rich in gold but lacked salt, a commodity that countries around … The spilling of salt was considered ominous, a portent of doom. Salt was used as currency in ancient Rome, and the roots of the words "soldier" and "salary" can be traced to Latin words related to giving or receiving salt. The Tower of London is a castle which consisted of many towers. Caravans consisting of as many as forty thousand camels traversed four hundred miles of the Sahara bearing salt to inland markets in the Sahel, sometimes trading salt for slaves: Timbuktu was a noted salt … … Salt in the Middle Ages Salt was considered so important it was stored in the Tower of London. During the late Roman Empire and throughout the Middle Ages salt was a precious commodity carried along the salt roads into the heartland of the Germanic tribes. When we speak of the middle ages, or the medieval period, without saying where it was, we are referring to Europe of the period of 476 to 1453 AD. The value of these spices was approximately the value of a yearly supply of grain for 1.5 million people. Sources  English Wayfaring Life in the XIVth Century, J. J. Jusserand, trans Lucy Smith, Putnam's Sons, New York,1931 (Orig. Roman salt-making entailed boiling the seawater in large lead-lined pans. In the middle of the peasants hut there was a fire used for cooking and heating, there were no chimneys. The wealthy people’s homes of the middle ages were more complex than the peasants homes. A farmer, for example, might need a certain implement … The gold-salt trade was an exchange of salt for gold between Mediterranean economies and West African countries during the Middle Ages. (a gold Louis coin was worth 24 … In the Middle Ages there were very broadly four types of hospital: for lepers; for poor (and sick) pilgrims; for the poor and infirm; and almshouses or bedehouses. By the late Middle Ages, thousands of tons of the most common spices were imported into Europe annually through Venice. The better off peasant families mostly spent their time together in tiny spaces, their houses had up to two rooms. If you compare the amount of livres it cost to a contemporary gold coin actually 50 kilograms of salt was worth a 6.7 gram gold coin, and that's with the salt tax added, so by weight the coin was worth something like 8,350x more than salt. This last form of hospital often included the explicit instruction that the brothers and sisters (those who resided there as long-term inmates), should pray … 1889). Blacksmiths oftentimes worked in exchange for goods or services with other workers in the community. One of the towers is called the 'Salt Tower'. Plus, some people were paid bread as part of their wages, so you can only guess the equivalent financial cost. Due to the high value of salt, an ancient Roman proverb said that people who did their job well were “worth their salt.” (Or “worth their weight in salt.”) Roman Wooden Tools Used for Salt Mining, Ocna Mures (Alba Iulia National Museum of the Union, 2011). You can see some historic salt prices in France on this Wikipedia.  London in the Age of Chaucer, A. R. Myers, University of Oklahoma Press, Norman, 1972  Standards of Living in the Later Middle Ages, Christopher Dyer, Cambridge University Press, … The first actual statement of … The cost of spices was so great that they were presented as gifts. The Roman Legions sometimes also used salt as currency. During the Middle Ages, salt was transported along roads built especially for that purpose. In fifteenth-century England, a pound of pepper cost more than two days’ wages by … During the Middle Ages, the ancient sanctity of salt slid toward superstition. That of course varies over the millennium which makes up the period. Guilds helped ensure that blacksmiths in the middle ages received fair compensation for their work, even if it sometimes did not come in the form of money.