From Runic Stone to Charter : Transformation of property confirmation in 11th and 12th century Denmark
By Minoru Ozawa
Proceedings of Japanese young medievalists seminar in Karuizawa (2007)
Introduction: It has been long thought that one hundred years from the middle of the 11th century when Cnut’s empire collapsed to the year 1157 when Valdemar the Great became Danish king was a transitory age in Danish history. Some historians considered these years as an age of shift from the pagan Viking Age to the Christian Middle Ages. However we have to pay more attention to the century to deeply understand that various innovative shifts were progressing politically, economically, socially and culturally.
My paper aims to make clear one aspect of these shifts, that is the background of the transformation of property confirmation in Denmark at the gate of the early Middle Ages. The central concern exists in how and why Denmark, non-successor state of the Roman empire, adopted the way of property confirmation through written documents in to its own system of land management.