Renovating early modern Leiden: new perspectives on the building trades

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What is still missing in construction history is an understanding of the submarket for renovation, maintenance and repair work - a submarket that probably had a larger turnover than new construction, but bare-ly left any paper trails in the past. However, insight into the working of this submarket is required before we can even start analysing how building contractors and building craftsmen divided their activities between new con-struction and renovation. This paper uses 100 well-documented histories of houses along the Rapenburg in Lei-den (The Netherlands), detects renovation cycles and analyses their main characteristics and determinants. Ren-ovation offered the actors in the building process many opportunities but involved certain risks as well. At-tempts to manage risk can be seen in their entrepreneurial strategies.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBuilding Knowledge, Constructing Histories
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the Sixth International Congress on Construction History (6ICCH), Brussels, Belgium, 9-13 July 2018
EditorsIne Wouters, Stephanie Van de Voorde, Inge Bertels, Bernard Espion, Krista De Jonge, Denis Zastavni
Place of PublicationBoca Raton, London, New York, Leiden
PublisherCRC Press
Number of pages9
ISBN (Print)978-1-138-58414-3
Publication statusPublished - 9 Jul 2018
Event6th International Congress on Construction history - Palais des Académies, Brussels, Belgium
Duration: 9 Jul 201813 Jul 2018


Conference6th International Congress on Construction history
Abbreviated title6ICCH
Internet address


  • Private Housing
  • Renovation works
  • Entrepreneurs
  • Early Modern Period
  • Leiden (The Netherlands)


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