The role of lesser aristocratic women in twelfth-century Yorkshire society — the Rumilly, Arches, and St Quentin Charters

Kilpi, H. I. (2017) The role of lesser aristocratic women in twelfth-century Yorkshire society — the Rumilly, Arches, and St Quentin Charters. Northern History, 54(2), pp. 133-148. (doi: 10.1080/0078172x.2017.1340244)

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Abstract

This article argues that lesser aristocratic women were an active part of twelfth-century society and that as landholders and alienators they were able to significantly shape and mould local monastic society, family wealth and relationships, and other secular social networks. The influence women could have on these areas was on the material and physical geography of the land as well as on the social relationships. As landholders, women could and did maintain social networks with the ecclesiastical and secular societies. This was, however, limited by the geographic location of their landholding and thus demonstrates a social world that is defined by localities and regions. The three families of Rumilly, Arches and St Quentin provide cases whereby women’s activities can be evidenced in a range of events and actions. They also demonstrate a level of independence in women’s agency that did not rely on their male kin before land alienations or grants could be made. The available charter evidence for the three families studied is also illustrative of the existing charter material that can be identified for lesser aristocratic women and allows the paper to address twelfth-century women outwith the traditionally studied groups of royal and comital women or religious women.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Kilpi, Dr Hanna
Authors: Kilpi, H. I.
College/School:College of Arts > School of Humanities > History
Journal Name:Northern History
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN:0078-172X
ISSN (Online):1745-8706
Published Online:28 June 2017
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2017 The University of Leeds
First Published:First published in Northern History 54(2): 133-148
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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