International Medieval Research 14

Front cover, IMR 14 - Click to enlarge
Aspects of Power and Authority in the Middle Ages
Edited by Brenda Bolton and Christine Meek

Concepts of power and authority and the relationship between them were fundamental to many aspects of medieval society. The essays in this collection present a series of case studies that range widely both chronologically and geographically, from Lombard Italy to early modern Iberia and from Anglo-Saxon, Norman and late medieval England to twelfth-century France and the lands beyond the Elbe in the conversion period. While some papers deal with traditional royal, princely and ecclesiastical authority, they do so in new ways. Others examine groups and aspects less obviously connected to power and authority, such as the networks of influence centring on royal women or powerful ecclesiastics, the power relationships revealed in Anglo-Saxon and Old-Norse literature or the influence that might be exercised by needy crusaders, by Jews with the ability to advance loans or by parish priests on the basis of their local connections. An important section discusses the power of the written word, whether papal bulls, collections of miracle stories or the documents produced in lawsuits. The papers in this volume demonstrate the variety and multiplicity of both power and authority and the many ways by which individuals exercised influence and exerted a claim to be heard and respected.

Articles in this volume include:

  • Creating an Image for a New Kingship: Charles I of Anjou, King of the Regno, by Jean Dunbabin
  • Image-making for Conquerors of England: Cnut and William I, by Chris Dennis
  • Dress and Authority in the Bayeux Tapestry, by Gale R. Owen-Crocker
  • Ostentation, Power, and Family Competition in Late-Medieval Rome: The Earliest Chapels at S. Maria in Aracoeli, by Claudia Bolgia
  • 'Treasures of the Temple' and Claims to Authority in Twelfth-Century Rome, by Marie Thérèse Champagne
  • Authority and Maternity in Late-Medieval Castile: Four Queens Regnant, by Bethany Arram
  • The Queen Consort in Late-Medieval Portugal, by Ana Maria S. A. Rodrigues
  • 'A Woman of Subtlety and a Man's Resolution': Matilda of Boulogne in the Power Struggles of the Anarchy, by Patricia Dark
  • The Power of Personal Networks: Clerics as Political Actors in the Conflict between Capetian France and the Country of Flanders during the Last Decade of the Twelfth Century, by Walter Ysebaert
  • 'I Know What You Did Last Summer': Knowledge as Power among Parochial Clergy in Later Medieval England, by Jeremy Goldberg
  • The Power of the Purse: Usury, Jews, and Crusaders, 1198 - 1245, by Rebecca Rist
  • Concepts of Power in Anglo-Scandinavian Verse, by Jayne Carroll
  • Power, Poetry, and Violence: The Battle of Maldon, by Alice Jorgensen
  • The Power of Documents: The Curious Case of Laudabiliter, by Anne J. Duggan
  • The Authority of Documents in Early-Medieval Italian Pleas, by Swen Holger Brunsch
  • Authorizing the Supernatural: An Examination of Some English Miracles around 1318, by R. C. Finucane
  • The Authority of Miracles: Caesarius of Heisterbach and the Livonian Crusade, by Barbara Bombi
  • Saintly Power as a Model of Royal Authority: The 'Royal Touch' and Other Miracles in the Early Vitae of Edward the Confessor, by Joanna Huntington