Locality and Polity

A Study of Warwickshire Landed Society, 1401–1499

by Christine Carpenter

This is a comprehensive study of minor landowners - the gentry - in one county in fifteenth-century England. In common with other local studies of the later Middle Ages, it builds upon the seminal work of K. B. McFarlane, looking at the political and social world in the localities from which the nobles drew their power. The book aims to present a rounded picture of the experiences of the gentry, relating their private and their public lives, and their permanent concerns to the changing needs of local and national politics. Its approach is thus both thematic, exploring the main elements, often private in nature, which moulded their public actions, such as marriage, estate management and senses of family, and chronological, presenting a detailed narrative of politics and account of political structures and relationships. The book is intended as a contribution to the history of England as a whole in the fifteenth century and to the study of the long-term development of the English landed classes and the English constitution.

  • Cambridge University Press; February 1992
  • ISBN: 9780511830259
  • Read online, or download in secure PDF format
  • Title: Locality and Polity
  • Author: Christine Carpenter
  • Imprint: Cambridge University Press

In The Press

Review of the hardback: 'Carpenter has undertaken a huge task, and one which must have given her very great intellectual pleasure over the past twenty years. The result is a feast of learning.' Local Population Studies