Licoricia of Winchester

Marriage, Motherhood and Murder in the Medieval Anglo-Jewish Community

By Suzanne Bartlet

Edited by: Patricia Skinner

On a spring day in 1277, the prominent Jewish businesswoman Licoricia of Winchester was found murdered by her daughter, stabbed to death in her own house. Alongside Licoricia's body was that of her Christian maid, Alice. Why was Licoricia killed? And, why was her death reported as far away as Germany? Now available in paperback, this ground-breaking book draws on extensive research in the fiscal archives of medieval England - most notably those of the Jewish Exchequer - to examine the family history behind this famous murder. It is the story of Licoricia's route to wealth through advantageous marriages (her second amidst a divorce scandal which was referred to the Beth Din in Paris), her business acumen, the business contacts she made, the close relationship she appears to have had with King Henry III, and the altogether more mixed fortunes of her sons. By using Licoricia's family as an example, the book demonstrates the gradual deterioration in the conditions of even the wealthiest Jews in England in the run up to the Expulsion of 1290, as well as drawing together the fragments of a medieval life which has long fascinated historians, but has never been fully investigated. New light is also shed on the Jewish community in medieval England and the tribulations that Jews suffered of regular, punitive taxation and arbitrary imprisonments. *** Librarians: ebook available on ProQuest and EBSCO [Subject: History, Medieval Studies, Jewish Studies, British Studies, Women's Studies]

Publication Date: 3/25/2015
Format: Paper
ISBN: 9780853038320

Available in other formats