Interventions and interactions
in Neighbours and strangers
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Using the evidence of normative texts, such as capitularies, as well as charters and estate records, this chapter studies the aims of interventions by political authorities and the dynamics of outside intervention within local society and their influence on social cohesion locally. With a focus on the three fields of war, justice and landownership, it demonstrates (where possible) the effects on the local of intervention from outside and demonstrates that such intervention was part of the regular experience of local people – whether from invaders, in court cases or as tenants. Moreover, individual members of local residential groups could often find supporters and mediators outside their small worlds, and factions within a community could use external agencies against their neighbours: external intervention into the local in the early Middle Ages could be an opportunity as well as a threat.

Neighbours and strangers

Local societies in early medieval Europe

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