The `violence' of life in the middle ages is nowadays both taken for granted and little understood. The essays in this collection all suggest or explore reasons why violent acts might have been perpetrated, and attempt to understand the social priorities which governed such acts. Broadly, the studies clarify issues relating to the creation of political identities and the establishment of social order, and cover matters of administration, religious ritual, and gender.GUY HALSALL is lecturer in the Department of History, Birkbeck College, University of London. Contributors: GUY HALSALL, LUIS A. GARCA MORENO, PAUL FOURACRE, T.S. BROWN, JANET L. NELSON, N.B. AITCHISON, MATTHEW BENNETT, GUY A.E. MORRIS, S.J. SPEIGHT, ROSS BALZARETTI,JULIE COLEMAN, NANCY L. WICKER
Violence studied as a key, and often ritualised, factor in the imposition of socio-political order at a variety of levels, on a wider European stage as well as locally.
Part 1 Levels ideals and realities: legitimate and illegitimate violence in Visigothic legal and ecclesiastical thought, Luis A. Garcia Moreno; the normalization of violence in later Merovingian Francia, Paul Fouracre; urban violence in early medieval Italy - the cases of Rome and Ravenna, T.S. Brown; the ritualization of nineth-century Frankish warfare, Janet L. Nelson. Part 2 Ritual violence: execution and ritual trauma burials in Anglo-Saxon England, Helen Geake; ritual regicide in early medieval Ireland, N.B. Aitchison. Part 3 Violence and socio-political order: violence and late Viking Age Scandinavian social order, Guy Morris; feud and warfare in Normandy during the Minority of William the Bastard, Matthew Bennett. Part 4 Violence and gender: the regulation of female violence in early medieval Italy, Ross Balzaretti; attitudes towards rape in Anglo-Saxon England, Julie Coleman; selective female infanticide in Viking Age Scandinavia, Nancy L. Wicker. Part 5 Violence and colonization: "the armed man" - violent iconography domination and resistance in the stone sculpture of Viking Age Northumbria, Neil S. Price; aristocratic violence in Leon-Castile c.950-1100, Simon Barton; violence and the creation of socio-political order in Yorkshire in the 1070s, Sarah Speight.
The twelve essays are without exception thought-provoking and characterized by a high level of scholarship. HISTORYEssays examine the form and function of violent bahaviour in early medieval society in case studies which range from Scandinavia to southern Italy... Halsall discusses the depiction of violence in contemporary sources and identifies important distinctions between public and private, and physical and ritual violence. MEDIUM AEVUMAn important addition to the dialogue concerning the nature of conflict and its resolution in the early medieval West. HISTORIAN [US]
The Boydell Press
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