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The author's discussion of luxury items in Medieval Europe is meant to
The author makes no judgments about Medieval European nobles and royalty.
The author's discussion is used in opposition to the previous discussion of items that people need to survive. The author uses the example of luxury items to show that "necessary" is in the eye of the beholder.
Although this statement may be true, this is not the reason that the author mentions luxury items. The author focuses on items that can be defined as "necessary" products (in addition to items which are obviously necessary, such as bread, water and medicine).
Although the passage tells us that nobles and royalty considered luxury items necessary, the author does not use this example to show luxury items were as vital to them as bread, water or medication, but to show luxury items were considered vital enough to cause inelasticity in demand.
The passage tells us that the demand for needed items is always inelastic, not elastic.