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Edict: A Pound of Wool per Week (June 14, 1723)
This Prussian edict by Frederick William I (“the Soldier King” ) stated that “market women, master-less servants, artisans’ wives, stall-women at markets, and burghers’ daughters” were to spin one pound of wool or flax every week, or knit or sew, rather than “sit around idly.” This is a good example of cameralist legislation driven both by state-building zeal and a moral fervor that aimed to “productivize” the common people. Provisions for the enforcement of such edits were flimsy, and they often went unfulfilled. Title page, Berlin, June 14, 1723.