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The Plumpton Letters and Papers

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This latest volume in the Royal Historical Society's Camden Fifth Series is a new and comprehensive edition of the only surviving northern medieval letter collection. Of particular value to social and legal historians, Joan Kirby's text contains a wealth of material unavailable to the editor of the previous edition of 1836. The collection offers a vivid day-to-day portrayal of a northern knightly family during a period of decline in the military function of knighthood. Parochial, proud, violent and litigious, as Percy tenants and feed officials their fortunes fluctuated with those of their patrons; loyalty to the Lancastrian cause in 1461, for example, cost both families loss of life, liberty and office. Two protracted lawsuits drew them deep into the complexities of the legal process and the political patronage on which they depended. The resulting correspondence with their lawyers constitutes a unique primary source for all scholars of medieval England.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Review of the hardback: 'For the prevalence of litigation in gentry circles, the ingenuity of lawyers and the manifold shortcomings of the law … the Plumpton archive is invaluable.' Keith Dockray, History

Review of the hardback: 'This volume is absolutely essential for all libraries of fifteenth-century English studies. It covers all the available letters and the most important documents, with detailed notes on every point … it is an outstanding edition of an almost unique source.' Parergon

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521573948
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 1/16/1997
  • Series: Camden Fifth Series , #8
  • Pages: 382
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 1.06 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction 1
Sir William Plumpton 3
Sir Robert Plumpton 9
The Plumpton Inheritance 13
The Babthorpe Inheritance 15
The Manuscripts 18
The Plumpton Coucher Book 21
Editorial Method 22
Sir Edward Plumpton's Letter Book, Nos 1-252 24
App. I Transcripts of Selected Documents from the Plumpton Coucher Book and Other Sources, Nos 1-9 229
App. II Calendar of Selected Documents from the Plumpton Coucher Book and Other Sources, Nos 1-88 245
App. III Biographical Notes 301
Index 345
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