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Den andlige änklingen och den världsliga änkan
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of History.
2008 (Swedish)In: Medeltidens mångfald: Studier i samhällsliv, kultur och kommunikation tillägnade Olle Ferm, Runica et medieavalia, Stockholm , 2008, 227-246 p.Chapter in book (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The spiritual widower and the wordly widow.

Civil status was not something that bothered late medieval Swedish people. Of course marriage was crucial both for women and for men but in different ways. Women attained their majority when they married. Men, when they married, not only ruled their own lives but governed their wives´lives, as well as the life of the whole household.

The author furthers previous studies on women´s liberty of action and independence. Earlier studies advocate the view-point that it was widowhood itself that made it possible for women to take part in public life. The author asserts that this was not always the case and that a woman gained the possibility to participate when she got married, provided she had private means to dispose of and that her husband let her act independently. The author points out that the concept "widow" during the late Middle Ages only was used when the woman had children under age. The concept widow meant "fatherless child", that is to say from having their father as the normal guardian they now had their mother. Widowhood gave a woman the right to administer her children´s means. When the widow administered her own means during widowhood the charters did not use the concept widow. In this essay this is demonstrated by tracing the real life of two noble women and their heirs, covering the period 1400 - 1501.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Runica et medieavalia, Stockholm , 2008. 227-246 p.
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-15045ISBN: 978-91-88568-36-6OAI: diva2:181565
Available from: 2008-11-19 Created: 2008-11-19 Last updated: 2009-11-23Bibliographically approved

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Bjarne Larsson, Gabriela
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ReferencesLink to record
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