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Medieval Studies

The Conventum of Aquitaine : An Early Eleventh Century Latin Narrative

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The Lord/Dependant (Vassal) Relationship: A Case Study From Aquitaine C. 1030, George Beech Dec 1997

The Lord/Dependant (Vassal) Relationship: A Case Study From Aquitaine C. 1030, George Beech

George T. Beech

This paper, a contribution to the current discussion on feudalism, is a study of a single, exceptionally well-documented lord/dependant (vassal) relationship from early eleventh century Aquitaine. It is based on an analysis of a 340-line narrative (Paris, BN, Lat., 5927) of a dispute between the Count of Poitiers and one of his castellans, Hugh of Lusignan. It examines successively, (1) the author's vocabulary of dependence, (2) contemporary conceptions of lordship and dependence, (3) the customary basis of this relationship; i.e. obligations, restrictions, and rights, (4) its landed, economic basis, and (5) its effectiveness. What distinguishes this narrative ...