Medieval Sumptuary Law

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medievalevents
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Medieval Sumptuary Law

Postby medievalevents » Thu Mar 20, 2008 4:57 pm

Hi guys,

Can anyone help me with advise on sumptuary law during the 13th/14th century, I am particularly looking for the rules on the position of sheriffs and Barron's?

And I could also do with help on researching fines and details on punishment fee's etc!

Any help will be greatly appreciated!!!!!!!!!


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Brother Ranulf
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Postby Brother Ranulf » Thu Mar 20, 2008 7:57 pm

Not really my period but as I understand it the sort of laws you are referring to didn't really make an appearance until after the dreaded Black Death, when lower classes were in a position to afford more expensive dress and had to be restrained from doing so.

Prior to the end of the 13th century, English sumptuary law really only refers to laws governing the dress of people such as Jews (two vertical white strips of cloth or parchment on their chests, in the same way as Hitler made them wear the star of David).


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Karen Larsdatter
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Re: Medieval Sumptuary Law

Postby Karen Larsdatter » Thu Mar 20, 2008 9:27 pm

Look for Sumptuary Legislation and Personal Regulation in England by Frances E. Baldwin.



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Tuppence
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Postby Tuppence » Mon Mar 24, 2008 12:12 am

dress and morality by aileen ribeiro also has some info about general sumptuary legislation, although it covers a few periods.

but don't forget the theory that sumptuary legislation was largely ignored (said theory being that the laws wouldn't have been re-issued so often if they'd been generally adhered to).


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Colin Middleton
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Postby Colin Middleton » Mon Apr 14, 2008 1:00 pm

I tend to work on the principal that sumtuary laws were ignored by people close to 'the border'. So if a law says that "X fur shall only by worn by knights and lords with an anual income of £400 or more", then that probably indicates that people with £400+ incomes and knights, etc with £300+ incomes were also wearing it. The implication there is that the common yeoman will not be wearing it (probably because he can't afford it).

I know that this should be obvious, but I'm waiting for that kind of sumptuary law argument to be abused in the same way that the LENEL argument so often is.


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Tuppence
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Postby Tuppence » Mon Apr 14, 2008 1:19 pm

The lenel argument is abused because it's a cop out - it's like* saying that you can't find the evidence for something, but you like it so will use it anyway.




*actually it's not like saying that - it is saying that.


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Postby danellis » Sun Nov 23, 2008 11:33 pm

sorry, my first time, what's the Lenel argument?


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lidimy
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Postby lidimy » Sun Nov 23, 2008 11:36 pm

LENEL =

Lack of Evidence Not Evidence of Lack.

:D


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Postby danellis » Sun Nov 23, 2008 11:40 pm

ta, and there was me looking up German historians! lol


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craig1459
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Postby craig1459 » Mon Nov 24, 2008 2:31 am

it's like the rules concerning livery - technically only persons of status x could grant livery, but there are examples of persons of status y giving them and ending up in court for doing so. the trick is finding out if your man was one of those. it was fairly rife in these parts from what I can tell


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Postby Theotherone » Mon Nov 24, 2008 8:13 pm

I did find a site on Teaching Chaucer ( http://www.unc.edu/depts/chaucer/costume.htm#II. ) that says this re fines etc

"There are no records of any person in England (up to 1400) who was prosecuted in accordance with these laws. Therefore, they are useful only to show the attitude of members of Parliament and the King at the time of their passing. "

Whether that is true or not...


Because there would have to be three of them.


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