Royal Officials in English Monastic Towns: Sharing of Powers
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Royal Officials in English Monastic Towns: Sharing of Powers
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Anna Anisimova 
Institute of World History RAS
State Academic University for the Humanities
Address: Russian Federation, Moscow

The article deals with the role of representatives of royal authority in the governance of a seigneurial town on the example of an English monastic town, i.e. a town under the monastic lordship. Extensive monastic privileges pertaining to a justice system and keeping of peace implied practically complete exclusion of these towns from the jurisdiction of, for example, a sheriff (local administration) or itinerary judges (eyres, representatives of central authorities), although, in reality, it was not the case. The extent of monastic immunity varied, and frequently, despite the proclaimed privileges, royal officials acted in town without, at least nominally, infringing the monastic privileges. There were several different forms of cooperation between royal and monastic officials. Besides, there were also situations when the interference into affairs of the monastery and town was caused by the seigneur’s inability to uphold the order in town (for example, an uprising of townspeople) that could have led to the taking of the monastery and its possessions into the King’s hand.

medieval England, monastic town, medieval town, royal power, local power, monastic liberty
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