Medieval Petitions: Grace and Grievance

Medieval Petitions: Grace and Grievance

Edited by W. Mark Ormrod, Gwilym Dodd and Anthony Musson
Boydell, 2009
ISBN: 9781903153253

The mechanics, politics and culture of petitioning in the middle ages are examined in this innovative collection. In addition to important and wide-ranging examinations of the ancient world and the medieval papacy, it focuses particularly on petitions to the English crown in the later middle ages, drawing on a major collection of documents made newly accessible to research in the National Archives. A series of studies explores the political contexts of petitioning, the broad geographical and social range of petitioners, and the fascinating ‘worm’s-eye’ view of medieval life that are uniquely offered by petitions themselves, and particular attention is given to the performative qualities of petitioning and its place in the culture of royal intercession. With their vivid new insights into judicial conventions and the legal creativity spawned by political crisis, these papers provide a closely integrated assessment of current scholarship and new research on these most fascinating and revealing of medieval social texts.


Introduction: Medieval Petitions in Context, by W M Ormrod

Parliamentary Petitions? The Origins and Provenance of the ‘Ancient Petitions’ [SC8] in the National Archives, by Gwilym Dodd


Petitioning in the Ancient World, by Serena Connelly

Petitioning between England and Avignon in the First Half of the Fourteenth Century, by Barbara Bombi

Petitions to the Pope in the Fourteenth Century, by Patrick Zutshi

Understanding Early Petitions: An Analysis of the Content of Petitions to Parliament in the Reign of Edward I, by Paul Brand


Petitions from Gascony: Testimonies of a Special Relationship, by Guilhem Pépin

Murmur, Clamour and Noise: Voicing Complaint and Remedy in Petitions to the English Crown, c.1300-c.1460, by W M Ormrod

Queenship, Lordship and Petitioning in Late Medieval England, by Anthony Musson

Taking Your Chances: Petitioning in the Last Years of Edward II and the First Years of Edward III, by Simon J Harris

Words and Realities: The Language and Dating of Petitions, 1326-7, by Shelagh Sneddon

A Petition from the Prisoners in Nottingham Gaol, c.1330, by David Crook

Thomas Paunfield, the ‘heye Court of rightwisnesse’ and the Language of Petitioning in the Fifteenth Century, by Gwilym Dodd

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