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Title: The palatinate of Durham and the Tudor state, c. 1485-1558
Author: Geall, Edward
ISNI:       0000 0004 6495 8672
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2016
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This thesis is an examination of several local families and their role shaping the palatinate of Durham’s position within the early Tudor state. Histories of the late medieval and early Tudor bishopric have tended to treat the palatinate as either an intractable obstacle to the consolidation of the English state, or as a highly distinctive and autonomous seat of power in the North-East, free from any meaningful encroachment by the crown. This thesis reframes Durham within the wider context of advancements in the early Tudor state and, particularly, more recent discussions on the nature and efficacy of patron-client or patronage networks. The central themes of this thesis are threefold. First, rather than see the history of Durham, its bishops, and landowners as a pitched battle against crown intervention, this thesis posits a new interpretation, one which foregrounds cooperation and mutual benefit. Early Tudor attitudes towards Durham were, for the most part, not grounded on a desire to abolish or undermine the bishopric and its political and administrative infrastructure. Where Durham’s resources could be applied for the betterment of the national polity, successive governments sought to work with, not against, the region’s landowners and officers, who in turn realised the benefits to be had from forging contacts with the court and other senior royal officials. Second, this increasingly pragmatic stance was nurtured through the formation and consolidation of patronage networks. It was through these symbiotic networks that both the crown and local landowners changed the nature of the bishopric’s role within the national polity; much like neighbouring Yorkshire, patron-client networks had the effect of bringing Durham more closely into line with central government, but not necessarily to the detriment of local customs and ideas of government. Finally, by examining the role of local landowners from outside the bishopric, in conjunction with Durham’s leading families and the bishops’ episcopal households, this thesis argues that the palatinate formed part of what was a highly effective regional community.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Economic and Social Research Council
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: DA Great Britain