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The Guild Organisation

The guild organisation governed the training and activities of the craftsmen.  For the most part, the apprenticeships for craftsmen were entered into between the ages of 14 and19.  The length of a masonry apprenticeship was 3 years.  Those that wanted to become engravers, had to train for another year.  The apprentices learned the technical and static basics as well as material science, geometry, technical draughts, and cost accounting.  The masters probably taught them in their own houses.  However, the main part of the apprenticeship was spent in practice on the building sites.  A master was not allowed to hire more than two apprentices.  Once the apprenticeship was absolved, the journeymen had to travel for at least two years.  Further training for the journeymen was done on the job at building sites.  They spent their winters learning theory.   Folklore has it that the masters and the journeymen met to study theory in a house in the Grass Alp lot.  The scope of the teaching activities in the Au Guild can be seen by the figures of 1,814 apprentices absolved between 1650 and 1787.  79 of them in the year 1700, alone.

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