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New Medieval Books: The Borgarthing Law and the Eidsivathing Law

The Borgarthing Law and the Eidsivathing Law: The Laws of Eastern Norway

Translated by Lisa Collinson, Torgeir Landro and Bertil Nilsson

ISBN: 978-0-367-64642-4

Translations of two law codes that were made in eastern Norway during the fourteenth century. These law codes focus on rules related to the Christian Church, ranging from baptisms to the paying of tithes.


The contents of the Church Law Sections include regulations relating to baptism rituals; building and maintenance of churches and churchyards; tithes; burial customs; the liturgical year, with its days of feasting or fasting; marriage regulations; holiday regulations; dietary regulations; and prohibitions against heathen customs. In general, the provisions are quite typical for a newly converted kingdom with a rudimentary Church organization; the initiation rites of the new religion are explained, and it is made clear that churches and churchyards must be maintained, and that heathen customs must cease.


Who is this book for?

Medieval law codes offer quite a lot of information for all types of historians, including those interested in family and social history, ecclesiastical history and more. This particular book is paired well with a couple of other medieval Scandinavian law codes published by Routledge: Magnus the Lawmender’s Laws of the Land and The Older Gulathing Law.

The translators

Lisa Collinson is Research Lead for Museums and Special Collections, University of Aberdeen. Torgeir Landro is Associate Professor at NLA University College, Norway. Bertil Nilsson is Professor Emeritus of History of Christianity at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.


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