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Wine purchase

Term for the custom in the Middle Ages to confirm a purchase or exchange transaction by drinking or feasting. The Middle High German term "Winkouf" is documented in 1218. It is essential that witnesses join in the drinking free of charge. The background to this was that the witnesses remembered the concluded transaction and should be able to testify in the event of a possible later challenge or dispute. This was common practice, especially when buying land and trading in livestock, but also in transactions of all kinds. In rural areas the purchase of wine is still common today, for example in the cattle trade in Swabian. In Bavaria and Austria there was the equivalent "Leikauf" or "Leitkauf". See also under Leitgeben and customs in viticulture.

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