Popular Protest in Late Medieval English Towns

Popular Protest in Late Medieval English Towns

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Contrary to received opinion, revolts and popular protests in medieval English towns were as frequent and as sophisticated, if not more so, as those in the countryside. This groundbreaking study refocuses attention on the varied nature of popular movements in towns from Carlisle to Dover and from the London tax revolt of Longbeard in 1196 to Jack Cade's Rebellion in 1450, exploring the leadership, social composition, organisation and motives of popular rebels. The book charts patterns of urban revolt in times of strong and weak kingship, contrasting them with the broad sweep of ecological and economic change that inspired revolts on the continent. Samuel Cohn demonstrates that the timing and character of popular revolt in England differed radically from revolts in Italy, France and Flanders. In addition, he analyses repression and waves of hate against Jews, foreigners and heretics, opening new vistas in the comparative history of late medieval Europe.show more

Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • 2 maps
  • 1139786822
  • 9781139786829

Review quote

'A step forward and bound to stimulate and facilitate further study.' The Times Literary Supplement 'What we have here is an important book based on thorough research that never fails to enlighten and absorb the reader.' Sean McGlynn, History 'This is a bold book, making large claims. Cohn provides brief accounts of numerous outbreaks of unrest in medieval towns which will be interesting to local historians.' Heather Falvey, The Ricardianshow more

Table of contents

Part I. The Setting: 1. Introduction: questions and sources; 2. Class struggle in English towns: workers and bosses; 3. Varieties of revolt; Part II. Crown and Town: Strife with Secular Authority: 4. Revolts against the Crown: crises of kingship from John Lackland to Henry VI; 5. The Black Death and urban protest; 6. Urban revolts against the Crown outside London: the case of Bristol; 7. A wave of insurrection, 1312-18?; 8. Tax revolts; 9. Revolts: poor against rich; Part III. Church and City: 10. Revolts in monastic boroughs; 11. Church struggles in towns other than monastic boroughs; 12. Urban conflict against bishops and universities; 13. Urban risings of hatred: Jews, foreigners, and heretics; 14. Conclusion; Bibliography.show more

About Samuel K. Jr Cohn

Samuel K. Cohn, Jr is Professor of Medieval History at the University of Glasgow. His work over the past decade has concentrated on plague and the history of popular insurrection and his previous publications include Cultures of Plague: Medical Thinking at the End of the Renaissance (2010) and Lust for Liberty: The Politics of Social Revolt in Medieval Europe, 1200-1425 (2006).show more

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