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Title: Rural credit, debt litigation and manor courts in England, c.1290-c.1380
Author: Briggs, C.
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2003
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This is a study of credit transactions in the English countryside. It is based on the evidence of private lawsuits of debt recorded in the rolls of medieval manorial courts. Most of the credit studied was relatively small scale and involved peasants. The dissertation explores a range of issues to do with legal aspects of debt, the status of creditors and debtors and the nature of the transaction in which they were engaged. While consisting primarily of a detailed investigation of two sets of manor court records, the dissertation aims to draw broader conclusions by comparing the two local studies with other existing evidence and research. The dissertation is in two parts. The first part begins by looking at changes over time in the number of new debt cases begun in individual courts. It asks whether legal changes specific to particular jurisdictions may have encouraged or discouraged the initiation of litigation. This involves a detailed consideration of manor court procedure and personnel as it affected debt and similar types of case, as well as the relationship between manor courts and other categories of medieval tribunal that handled debt business. The second part provides close analysis of the people who participated in litigation. Their social and economic status, place of residence and patterns of lending and borrowing are considered. Also, attention is given to the subject matter of the recorded loans, their size and possible purposes. Part II is closely linked with Part I, since it explores the possibility that particular local legal jurisdictions tended to foster characteristic forms of credit market and participation in that market.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available