- Paperback: 272 pages
- Publisher: Harper Perennial; Reprint edition (January 30, 1991)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0060920467
- ISBN-13: 978-0060920463
- Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.6 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 46 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #739,267 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Life in a Medieval Village Reprint Edition
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From Publishers Weekly
According to the authors of Life in a Medieval City , the vast majority of medieval Europeans lived in villages--"permanent communities organized for agricultural production." This earnest but dry distillation of period documents and archeological records focuses on Elton, an extant village located 70 miles north of London. The Gieses examine the dynamics of Elton's open-field type of agriculture; the division of the villagers into free and unfree, rich and poor; and the relationship between peasants and their ecclesiastical lord. Also discussed are the peasants' simple dress; meager diet; primitive housing; quarrels and lawsuits; sexual mores; rites of marriage, death and inheritance; and penchant for ale. Coroners' rolls reveal that parents frequently neglected infants; court accounts demonstrate that witnesses of crimes were obligated to come to the rescue of the victim. While valuable to history students, the barrage of facts presented here won't come alive for lay readers. Illustrations not seen by PW. BOMC, History Book Club and QPB alternates.
Copyright 1989 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
From School Library Journal
Using the English village of Elton, the Gies vividly detail the everyday lives of people during the Middle Ages. The development and difficult-to-define concept of the village is traced, and examples of daily occurrences in the village hierarchy, the inhabitants, marriage and family, work, and in the judicial system are given. The decline of the village as a major social system concludes the study. The book will be a challenge for most high-school students. Many aspects of village life are discussed; because of the brevity of the text, most concepts are not fully developed. Middle Age terminology is used extensively, and often it is not defined until after the term has been introduced. Reproductions and illustrations give glimpses of medieval life, but do not relate directly to the text. However, records of fines, sales transactions, marriages, etc. are quoted to emphasize a point, providing primary-source information, and the book is a good example of history as a living, changing form, for it outlines some new interpretations of life during this period. --Stuart A. MacCaffray, Jr., Lake Braddock Secondary School, Burke, VA
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
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Top customer reviews
Although the authors made an effort to define unfamiliar terms in context, the mini-definitions section at the end would have been more effective if an easy way to access it and return to the text had been available. Perhaps a method similar to that for footnotes.