Guilds, Towns, and Cultural Transmission in the North, 1300-1500
The economic and political roles of towns in the Nordic late Middle Ages - with Lubeck as the major hub in an extensive network - have long been recognized and studied, be it in histories of nations, the Hanse, or individual towns. In such accounts, however, the regional web of urban culture has not always been given its due. And, as most manifestations of urban culture were anchored in the social and business corporations generally designated as guilds, these provided the natural point of departure for an attempt to appreciate this dynamic segment of northern Europe's cultural history. In this collection, leading specialists in Nordic urban history examine towns from the whole region, as distant and different from one another, such as Tallinn, Bergen, Lubeck, Oslo, and Stockholm, among others. The contributions discuss central and significant topics, including means of communication, social identities, pageantry and feasting, and the religious role of guilds. The book's Introduction locates these studies, individually and collectively, in relation to recent developments in the exploration of a late-medieval field whose potential is increasingly appreciated.
Publication Date: 11/1/2013