Las deudas y el oro: estructura y caracterización del crédito notarial en la ciudad de Porto a comienzos del siglo XVIII
Abstract: The aim of this paper is to analyse the structure of Porto citizen’s notarial credit just before the arrival of Brazilian gold at the beginning of the 18th century. Through the extensive use of fiscal records of extraordinary value, the socalled décimas de juros, we will identify the main characteristics of that structure, including the amounts of credit involved, the interest rates applied, and its gender relations. We will also present some working hypotheses regarding the socio-professional definition of debtors and creditors. The results of the research will show a division of the Portuguese credit market into two distinct levels, each of which aimed at serving a specific portion of the population. The data will also show that the years 1715-1719 coincided with a profound transformation of the notary credit system, triggered by the first arrivals of Brazilian gold and the simultaneous decrease in the tax rate applied to loans.