The Crown Pleas of the Suffolk Eyre of 1240
Title Details

21st May 2021

234 Pages

23.4 x 15.6 cm

1 line. Illustrations

Series: Suffolk Records Society

Imprint: Boydell Press

The Crown Pleas of the Suffolk Eyre of 1240

Edited by Eric Gallagher

Revised by Henry Summerson

Introduction by Henry Summerson

  • Description
  • Contents
Edition of the records of a medieval Suffolk eyre reveal rich details of life at the time.
The eyre was an organised judicial visitation to the counties of England by the king's justices to hear all types of plea, civil and crown, as well as to investigate any matters for the king that pertain to the county; it was thusa hugely important part of the legal process.
This volume, edited by Eric Gallagher with an introduction by Henry Summerson, follows on from Dr Gallagher's edition and translation of the civil pleas of the same eyre, published by the Suffolk Records Society in 2009. But whereas the civil pleas deal primarily with litigation between landowners, the crown pleas are mostly concerned with the actions of townsmen and peasants, recorded both as killers andthieves, and as the victims of crime. Like the civil pleas, the crown pleas illuminate the workings of the common law, but in addition they illustrate the functions and purposes of local and central government, shedding light insometimes vivid detail upon the lives of the humbler members of society, upon their occupations, relationships, misfortunes and quarrels - and the sometimes bizarre ways in which they met their deaths. The eyre was led by Williamof York, the King's justiciar and later bishop of Salisbury, and his colleagues who met at Ipswich, Cattishall (outside Bury St Edmunds) and Dunwich.
The eyre roll, now in the National Archives, is the first from Suffolk surviving in full to have been edited and published; it has the particular interest of coming from a county that was then one of the most populous and prosperous of English shires.

ERIC GALLAGHER gained his doctorate at London University with a thesis on the civil pleas of the Suffolk eyre of 1240. HENRY SUMMERSON was awarded his Ph.D. by Cambridge University for a thesis on crime and law enforcement in England, 1227-1263. He has continued to work in this field, publishing numerous articles on aspects of medieval criminality, and editions, alone or in collaboration, of three crown pleas rolls, for Devon in 1238, Wiltshire in 1268 and Lancashire in 1292.
Introduction
The Crown Pleas of the Suffolk Eyre of 1240
Glossary and abbreviations
Bibliography
Index of people and places
Analysis of contents

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9781783276004

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Title Details

21st May 2021

234 Pages

2.34 x 1.56 cm

1 line. Illustrations

Series: Suffolk Records Society

Imprint: Boydell Press