Unpredictability and Presence: Norwegian Kingship in the High Middle Ages

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BRILL, 2008 - History - 375 pages
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This book a " inspired by historians like Fredric Cheyette, Stephen White and William Miller a " applies a legal anthropological framework to Norwegian history. At the same time, it focuses on what happens when pre-state conflict patterns encounters a more stable royal power in the high middle ages. The author demonstrates how in the 12th and 13th century the king under strong clerical influence is depicted as just and omnipresent. However, a detailed survey of the kinga (TM)s conflicts shows that he to a substantial degree based his dominion on unpredictability and presence. The results presented in this book will certainly be discussed, but few will disagree that it formulates the question of state formation in a new and challenging way. In addition it clearly demonstrates the relevance of studying Scandinavian history as part of European history.
  

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Contents

Introduction
1
OBEDIENCE AND SERVICE
49
Introduction
51
The Relationship to God
57
Chapter Two The Relationship to the King
69
LOYALTY
109
Introduction
111
Chapter One The Relationship between King and Retainers
125
Chapter Two The Relationship between the King and the Magnates
155
Chapter Three The Relationship between the King and the Peasants
257
Conclusion Unpredictability and Presence
311
Abbreviations
347
Bibliography
349
Index
367
Copyright

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About the author (2008)

Hans Jacob Orning, Ph.D. (2004) in medieval history, University of Oslo, is Associate Professor in medieval history at University College in Volda, Norway. He has published many articles on Scandinavian medieval history.

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