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Report No. 63

2.11. Mediaeval theory.-

In the mediaeval period, usury in all its forms was condemned by theorists as being contrary to-scriptures and to the teachings of philosophy. But, in practice, the theorists agreed that it may be legitimate to receive payment for a loan of money where the lender undertook a part of the risk involved but not where the debt was unqualified by any share of the risk. When the structure of society grew more complex, it became evident that neither the Government nor commerce could be carried on without credit, and that there were some loans to which the overall prohibition of the usury laws on moral grounds could not apply.1

1. Dr. Froncia Hyde, in Usury in Chambers Encyclopaedia, (1959), Vol. 14, pp. 213, 214.

Interest Act, 1839 Back

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