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Reynolds, Susan :

Fiefs and Vassals : the medieval evidence reinterpreted - Oxford (etc.) : Oxford University Press, 1994.XI, 544 p. ; 24 cm.List of works cited: p. 487-526.

Cover illustration: opening initial of the Libri Feudorum, reproduced by kind permission of the Osterreichisehe Nationalbibliothek, Vienna (Cod. 2262 fo. 174v).

Susan Reynolds 1994, First published 1994, Reprinted 1994, 1995 (twice). D117.R49 1994 940.1 —dc20 94-2428; ISBN 0-19-820458-2;
ISBN 0-19-820648-8 (pbk)

This is a radical new examination of relations between rulers, nobles, and free men, the distillation of wide-ranging research by a leading medieval historian. It has revolutionized the way we think of the Middle Ages.

Susan Reynolds is an Emeritus Fellow of Lad3' Margaret hall, Oxford.

'Dr Reynolds pits her formidable resources of learning, subtlety and not least common sense. Tier. . book sets out to show how it simply is not true that medieval society was organised or even envisaged in accordance with the feudal principles at any date long after what historians regard as their heyday.This, then, is a book whose intellectual courage is as stirring as its range is wide and its scholarship deep.'

Times Literary Supplement

'Hats ofg ladies and gentlemen, this is something really special … utterly absorbing and important. If Dr Reynolds's arguments are accepted, then most textbooks on medieval history will have to be recalled for repair like defective washing-machines. . Dr Reynolds's superb book is bound to generate much scholarly debate, especially across the Channel.' Observer
 

Contents

i. The Problem of Feudalism

i. i. The nature of the problem i
1.2. The historiography of feudalism 3
1.3. The plan of the book ‘4

2.Vassalage and the Norms of Medieval Social Relations

 

2. i. The concept of vassalage 17
2. 2. Some problems of the concept 22
2. 3. A substitute for the concept of vassalage:
some medieval norms and values 34
2. 4. Conclusion 46

3. Fiefs and Medieval Property Relations

3. s.The concept of the fief 48
3.2. Ideas of property 53
3. 3. A hypothesis about property law before 1100 57
3. 4. A hypothesis about property law after iwo 64
3. 5. Conclusion 73

4. Gaul and the Kingdom of the Franks

4. i. The Merovingian period 75
4. 2. The Carolingians: vassi and benefices 84
4. 3. Full property under the Carolingians 105
4. 4. Counts and the problem of the end of the empire iii

5. The Kingdom of France, 900-1100

5. 1. The problems 115
5. 2. Government and political relations 124
5. 3. Benefices and the lands of counts and churches 133
5. 4. Other full property: alods and inheritances 145
5. 5 Fiefs 16o
5. 6. Conclusion 18o

6. Italy

6.i. The problems 181
6. 2. Before 774: the Lombard kingdom
6. 3. Political relations and government from 774 to
the twelfth century 189
6. 4. Benefices and fiefs, 774—1037 192
6. 5. Benefices and fiefs, 1037 to the early twelfth
century 199
6. 6. Full property from 774 to the twelfth century 207
6. 7. The eleventh-century papacy: fiefs and oaths of
fidelity 210
6. 8. The beginning of academic law 215
6. 9. Politics and the new law in the twelfth century 231
6. 10. The Norman south 240
6. 11. Professional law and government 249
6. 12. Conclusion 256

7. The Kingdom of France, 1100—1300

7. 1. The transition to professional law and
government 258
7. 2. Words and concepts: the twelfth century 260
7. 3. Words and concepts: the thirteenth century 276
7. 4. Words and concepts: the feudal hierarchy 288
7. 5. The rights and obligations of property 295
7. 6. Conclusion 320

8. England

8. 1. The problems 323
8. 2. Before the mid tenth century 324
8. 3. From the mid tenth century to xo66 332
8.4. The Norman Conquest 342
8. 5. Words and concepts, 1100—1300 353
8. 6. The obligations of property, 1100-1300 361
8. 7. The rights of property, 1100-1300 374
8. 8. English law and feudal law 386

8. 9. Conclusion 393

9. The Kingdom of Germany

9. 1.The problems 396
9. 2. Before 911 398
9. 3. Government and jurisdiction from 911 to the
early twelfth century 403
9. 4. Full property from 911 to the early twelfth
century 415
9. 5. Benefices and fiefs from 911 to the early twelfth
century 428
9. 6. Words, concepts, and law : the twelfth century
9. 7. Words, concepts, and law: the thirteenth century 451
9. 8. The rights and obligations of property, 1100-1300 461
9. 9. Conclusion 472

10. Conclusion 475

Appendix: Early treatises on the law of fiefs 483
List of works cited 487
Index 527



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