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The power of the bishop in the Dioceses of Lincoln and Cremona (1067-­‐1340): a study in comparative history

Silvestri, Angelo Mario 2012. The power of the bishop in the Dioceses of Lincoln and Cremona (1067-­‐1340): a study in comparative history. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.
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The bishops of the 11th-14th centuries were key figures both within the church hierarchy and within state organisation across Europe. In addition to being the primary religious authorities within their dioceses they were also local or national potentates in their own right, judges, feudal lords, warriors and advisers to kings and other rulers. And yet their nature and extent of their local power is often elusive. Moreover the nature of their power changed over time making their role and their authority extremely fluid. One can hardly study the history of the medieval church without understanding how their control was exercised in the diocese, and in the city. This thesis will assess the differences, the shift and the changes in the power of the bishop in the city and the diocese of Lincoln and Cremona from mid 11th century to mid 14th century. Understanding how their power and their role changed in time is important to understand the role of the church and medieval society as a whole. Lincoln, with the biggest medieval diocese in England and with its unique series of bishops such as Hugh of Wells, Hugh of Avalon, Robert Grosseteste and Oliver Sutton, represents a substantial example to study in order to understand why and how the power of the bishop changed. On the other hand Cremona, with its unique political role during the central medieval centuries and with bishops of the calibre of Oberto and Sicardo, epitomizes the struggle for power and authority the bishops had to face in a communal Italian city. The comparison between the bishop’s powers offers us similarities and the differences between the roles and functions of the prelates in the two cities, as indicated by the available evidence and by the questions asked by historians. This study allows me to suggest a broader and more satisfying picture. The thesis uses a series of sources ranging from the bishops’ records, registers, and Episcopal Acta, manuscript and parchment sources, the Latin chronicles of the period, as well as architectural evidence.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: History, Archaeology and Religion
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BR Christianity
D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
D History General and Old World > DG Italy
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 04:52

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