To Have and to Hold: Marrying and its Documentation in Western Christendom, 400-1600
Coeditor, To Have and to Hold: Marrying and its Documentation in Western Christendom, 400-1600 (Cambridge/London: Cambridge University Press, 2007) (with Philip L. Reynolds)
This volume analyzes how, why, and when pre-modern Europeans documented their marriages - through property settlements, prenuptial contracts, court testimony, church weddings, and more. The authors consider both the function of documentation in the process of marrying and what the surviving documents say about pre-modern marriage. After analyzing the foundations of Western marriage set by Roman law and Patristic theology, the chapters provide vivid case studies of marital documents and practices in medieval France, England, Iceland, and Ireland, and in Renaissance Florence, Douai, and Geneva.
Table of Contents
“A marvelous contribution to our understanding of medieval marriage traditions based on an analysis of the documents that preserve them."
--Journal of Interdisciplinary History
“In this valuable collection of essays … ranging in time from the late Roman Empire to the Reformation, and geographically from North Africa to Iceland, the complexities in both legal and social understandings of marriage come up again and again. Questions raised by this international group of scholars concerning the exchange of property naturally occur, but they also describe changing approaches to gender relations, the status of the individual in relation to the community, the role of the Church and the competing of tradition and law, both canon or secular, make this an important volume. This is a remarkably organic volume, even for a collection of essays on a linked topic.”
-- Journal of Law and Religion