Friday, September 14, 2007

The Coutumes De Beauvaisis of Philippe De Beaumanoir, trans. by Akehurst

Last month I decided that I needed to see what this book, a summary of legal doctrine and procedure in one north French province, said about warfare. When I got hold of this translation of Beaumanoir's Customs of the Beauvaisis I found that I couldn't put it down. Legal texts of any era are not usually my favorite reading, but this had so much personality. I probably ended up reading two thirds of this heavy tome, without complaint.

One warning: given the scholarly debates around the terms vassal and fief I found it rather unfortunate that the translator was not absolutely clear what Old French terms he was translating when he used these English words.

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