Medieval people were apt to be xenophobic. Viewed with the greatest suspicion in a small town, the foreigner, or stranger, was almost equally suspect in a large city. Foreigners existed outside, and conspicuously apart from, the normal framework of local society and its organized groups.
The social group—already geographically defined and further sensitized by its jealously guarded privileges, more valuable when most restricted—defined itself with so many excluding clauses that it was not hard for someone to be an outsider. Foreynes, born in London but excluded from belonging to a craft, found themselves in the position of outsiders in their own town. A citizen of Nuremberg was a fortiori regarded more or less as a foreigner in the Hansa towns. A wine grower from Meudon would be aware of being an outsider when he delivered the wine from his vineyard to Paris. A baker from Bourg Saint-Marcel or from Corbeil was allowed to sell bread only three times a week—on Wednesdays and Saturdays at the covered market and on Sundays from a stall in Place Maubert—just as the foreyne in London was allowed to trade only in the district of Blancheappleton.
Living in these alien surroundings, foreigners were inclined to turn in on themselves, even when not required officially to live concentrated in one area; the many "Lombard Streets" found in European cities are sufficient evidence of this defensive attitude. Seeking as much a social group as commercial convenience, the Tuscans in Paris congregated beneath the walls of the churches of Saint-Merry, Saint-Jacques-de-la-Boucherie, and Saint‐