By A.J. Kosto
Acta historica et archaeologica mediaevalia, No.19 (1998)
Introduction: Pierre Bonnassie’s identification of the significance of the convenientia is among rhe most important of his many contributions to out understanding of the Catalan counties in the eleventh century. Following on the pioneering study of Paul Ourliac, Bonnassie established a typology of the ‘feudal convention’ and fit the chronology of the convenientia into his picture of a transformation of structures of power. The rise of the convenientia from c.1020 mirrors rhe decline of records of public judicial processes, neatly illustrating the narrative of a crisis of public order. These studies, still fundamental, omitted a thorough diplomatic study of the evidence. The present arricle, an attempt to fill that gap, shows that such an approach bears fruit. Similarly, widening the scope of the inquiry beynnd the ‘feudal’ conventions to which Bonnassie limited his observations only adds support to arguments for the importance of this highly flexible form of written agreement in Catalan society.