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William Chester Jordan - Author

About the Author

Books by William Chester Jordan

Servant of the Crown and Steward of the Church The Career of Philippe of Cahors

Servant of the Crown and Steward of the Church The Career of Philippe of Cahors

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Hardback Release Date: 22/11/2019

In the thirteenth century, radical reformers - churchmen, devout laywomen and laymen, and secular rulers - undertook Hherculean efforts aimed at the moral reform of society. No principality was more affected by these impulses than France under its king, Louis IX or Saint Louis. The monarch surrounded himself with gifted, energetic moralists to carry out his efforts. Servant of the Crown and Steward of the Church explores the career of one of the most influential of King Louis's reformers, Philippe of Cahors. Born into a bourgeois family dwelling on the periphery of the medieval kingdom of France, Philippe rose through the ecclesiastical hierarchy to the office of judge. There he came to the attention of royal administrators, who recommended him for the king's service. He ascended rapidly, and was eventually entrusted with the royal seal, effectively making constituting him the chancellor of the kingdom, the highest member of the royal administration. Louis IX secured his election as bishop of vreux in 1269. Using the records of Philippe's work in Reims, Paris, and vreux, William Chester Jordan reconstructs Philippe's career, providing a fascinating portrait of the successes and failures of reform in the thirteenth century.

Order and Innovation in the Middle Ages Essays in Honor of Joseph R. Strayer

Order and Innovation in the Middle Ages Essays in Honor of Joseph R. Strayer

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Hardback Release Date: 20/06/2019

The Middle Ages were for many years generally viewed as a period when faith and order supported a rigid society. By painstaking archival research, historians such as Joseph R. Strayer and the contributors to this volume have gradually replaced this view with a regard for the period as a time of great intellectual diversity. These essays, divided into five groups, probe the themes of order and innovation as they appear in medieval government; finance; trade and urban life; social arrangements; and aspects of the personality and goals of the individual. The contributors focus on England, France, and the Mediterranean from about the eleventh to about the sixteenth century. Contributors: Frederic Kreisler, Charles Radding, Giles Constable, William Bowsky, John Freed, Phillippe Wolff, Thomas Bisson, Richard Kaeuper, John Benton, Archibald Lewis, William Jordan, Rhiman Rotz, Robert Baker, Robert Lopez, Teofilo Ruiz, Raphael DeSoignie, Bennett Hill, Frederic Cheyette, Jan Rogozinski, Bruce McNab, Lester Little, Robert Lerner, Elizabeth Brown, Charles Wood, and Gaines Post. Originally published in 1976. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

The Apple of His Eye Converts from Islam in the Reign of Louis IX

The Apple of His Eye Converts from Islam in the Reign of Louis IX

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Hardback Release Date: 09/04/2019

The thirteenth century brought new urgency to Catholic efforts to convert non-Christians, and no Catholic ruler was more dedicated to this undertaking than King Louis IX of France. His military expeditions against Islam are well documented, but there was also a peaceful side to his encounter with the Muslim world, one that has received little attention until now. This splendid book shines new light on the king's program to induce Muslims-the apple of his eye -to voluntarily convert to Christianity and resettle in France. It recovers a forgotten but important episode in the history of the Crusades while providing a rare window into the fraught experiences of the converts themselves. William Chester Jordan transforms our understanding of medieval Christian-Muslim relations by telling the stories of the Muslims who came to France to live as Christians. Under what circumstances did they willingly convert? How successfully did they assimilate into French society? What forms of resistance did they employ? In examining questions like these, Jordan weaves a richly detailed portrait of a dazzling yet violent age whose lessons still resonate today. Until now, scholars have dismissed historical accounts of the king's peaceful conversion of Muslims as hagiographical and therefore untrustworthy. Jordan takes these narratives seriously-and uncovers archival evidence to back them up. He brings his findings marvelously to life in this succinct and compelling book, setting them in the context of the Seventh Crusade and the universalizing Catholic impulse to convert the world.

From England to France Felony and Exile in the High Middle Ages

From England to France Felony and Exile in the High Middle Ages

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 19/05/2017

At the height of the Middle Ages, a peculiar system of perpetual exile--or abjuration--flourished in western Europe. It was a judicial form of exile, not political or religious, and it was meted out to felons for crimes deserving of severe corporal punishment or death. From England to France explores the lives of these men and women who were condemned to abjure the English realm, and draws on their unique experiences to shed light on a medieval legal tradition until now very poorly understood. William Chester Jordan weaves a breathtaking historical tapestry, examining the judicial and administrative processes that led to the abjuration of more than seventy-five thousand English subjects, and recounting the astonishing journeys of the exiles themselves. Some were innocents caught up in tragic circumstances, but many were hardened criminals. Almost every English exile departed from the port of Dover, many bound for the same French village, a place called Wissant. Jordan vividly describes what happened when the felons got there, and tells the stories of the few who managed to return to England, either illegally or through pardons. From England to France provides new insights into a fundamental pillar of medieval English law and shows how it collapsed amid the bloodshed of the Hundred Years' War.

Unceasing Strife, Unending Fear Jacques de Therines and the Freedom of the Church in the Age of the Last Capetians

Unceasing Strife, Unending Fear Jacques de Therines and the Freedom of the Church in the Age of the Last Capetians

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 19/07/2016

This absorbing book explores the tensions within the Roman Catholic church and between the church and royal authority in France in the crucial period 1290-1321. During this time the crown tried to force churchmen to accept policies many considered inconsistent with ecclesiastical freedom and traditions--such as paying war taxes and expelling the Jews from the kingdom. William Jordan considers these issues through the eyes of one of the most important and courageous actors, the Cistercian monk, professor, abbot, and polemical writer Jacques de Therines. The result is a fresh perspective on what Jordan terms the story of France in a politically terrifying period of its existence, one of unceasing strife and unending fear. Jacques de Therines was involved in nearly every controversy of the period: the expulsion of the Jews from France, the relocation of the papacy to Avignon, the affair of the Templars, the suppression of the heresies of Marguerite Porete and of the Spiritual Franciscans, and the defense of the exempt monastic orders' freedom from all but papal control. The stands he took were often remarkable in themselves: hostility to the expulsion of Jews and spirited defense of the Templars, for example. The book also traces the emergence of King Philip the Fair's (1285-1314) almost paranoid style of rule and its impact on church-state relations, which makes the expression of Jacques de Therines's views all the more courageous.

Louis IX and the Challenge of the Crusade A Study in Rulership

Louis IX and the Challenge of the Crusade A Study in Rulership

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Hardback Release Date: 19/04/2016

Louis IX has long been known both as a saintly crusader and as the founder of effective royal administration in France. But, in spite of a vast amount of research, the details of what happened under his rule and why it happened have been little understood. Synthesizing this research from a thematic perspective, William Chester Jordan integrates the various facets of the king's reign from 1226 to 1270 to show how the monarch's reforms were inextricably connected with his crusades. Originally published in 1979. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

Order and Innovation in the Middle Ages Essays in Honor of Joseph R. Strayer

Order and Innovation in the Middle Ages Essays in Honor of Joseph R. Strayer

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 16/02/2015

The Middle Ages were for many years generally viewed as a period when faith and order supported a rigid society. By painstaking archival research, historians such as Joseph R. Strayer and the contributors to this volume have gradually replaced this view with a regard for the period as a time of great intellectual diversity. These essays, divided into five groups, probe the themes of order and innovation as they appear in medieval government; finance; trade and urban life; social arrangements; and aspects of the personality and goals of the individual. The contributors focus on England, France, and the Mediterranean from about the eleventh to about the sixteenth century. Contributors: Frederic Kreisler, Charles Radding, Giles Constable, William Bowsky, John Freed, Phillippe Wolff, Thomas Bisson, Richard Kaeuper, John Benton, Archibald Lewis, William Jordan, Rhiman Rotz, Robert Baker, Robert Lopez, Teofilo Ruiz, Raphael DeSoignie, Bennett Hill, Frederic Cheyette, Jan Rogozinski, Bruce McNab, Lester Little, Robert Lerner, Elizabeth Brown, Charles Wood, and Gaines Post. Originally published in 1976. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

Louis IX and the Challenge of the Crusade A Study in Rulership

Louis IX and the Challenge of the Crusade A Study in Rulership

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 16/02/2015

Louis IX has long been known both as a saintly crusader and as the founder of effective royal administration in France. But, in spite of a vast amount of research, the details of what happened under his rule and why it happened have been little understood. Synthesizing this research from a thematic perspective, William Chester Jordan integrates the various facets of the king's reign from 1226 to 1270 to show how the monarch's reforms were inextricably connected with his crusades. Originally published in 1979. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

Men at the Center Redemptive Governance Under Louis IX

Men at the Center Redemptive Governance Under Louis IX

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 25/09/2012

Three portraits of men who were at the very center of governance in thirteenth-century France. Men who strove in the shadow of King Louis IX (Saint Louis) to impose a redemptive regime on the realm. Jordan treats them as individuals, but in a sense they are also types: Robert of Sorbon, a churchman; Etienne Boileau, a bourgeois; and Simon de Nesle, an aristocrat. Robert was the founder of the Sorbonne (one of the first significant colleges of the medieval University of Paris); Boileau was the prevoAet or royal administrator of Paris; and Simon was twice co-regent of the kingdom. Thinking about them and their relations with Louis IX opens up a new and altogether sobering vista for exploring the nature of the king's rule and the impact of his rule on his subjects.

A Tale of Two Monasteries Westminster and Saint-Denis in the Thirteenth Century

A Tale of Two Monasteries Westminster and Saint-Denis in the Thirteenth Century

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/05/2011

A Tale of Two Monasteries takes an unprecedented look at one of the great rivalries of the Middle Ages and offers it as a revealing lens through which to view the intertwined histories of medieval England and France. This is the first book to systematically compare Westminster Abbey and the abbey of Saint-Denis--two of the most important ecclesiastical institutions of the thirteenth century--and to do so through the lives and competing careers of the two men who ruled them, Richard de Ware of Westminster and Mathieu de Vendome of Saint-Denis. Esteemed historian William Jordan weaves a breathtaking narrative of the social, cultural, and political history of the period. It was an age of rebellion and crusades, of artistic and architectural innovation, of unprecedented political reform, and of frustrating international diplomacy--and Richard and Mathieu, in one way or another, played important roles in all these developments. Jordan traces their rise from obscure backgrounds to the highest ranks of political authority, Abbot Richard becoming royal treasurer of England, and Abbot Mathieu twice serving as a regent of France during the crusades. By enabling us to understand the complex relationships the abbots and their rival institutions shared with each other and with the kings and social networks that supported and exploited them, A Tale of Two Monasteries paints a vivid portrait of medieval society and politics, and of the ambitious men who influenced them so profoundly.

Unceasing Strife, Unending Fear Jacques de Therines and the Freedom of the Church in the Age of the Last Capetians

Unceasing Strife, Unending Fear Jacques de Therines and the Freedom of the Church in the Age of the Last Capetians

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Hardback Release Date: 20/12/2004

This absorbing book explores the tensions within the Roman Catholic church and between the church and royal authority in France in the crucial period 1290-1321. During this time the crown tried to force churchmen to accept policies many considered inconsistent with ecclesiastical freedom and traditions--such as paying war taxes and expelling the Jews from the kingdom. William Jordan considers these issues through the eyes of one of the most important and courageous actors, the Cistercian monk, professor, abbot, and polemical writer Jacques de Therines. The result is a fresh perspective on what Jordan terms the story of France in a politically terrifying period of its existence, one of unceasing strife and unending fear. Jacques de Therines was involved in nearly every controversy of the period: the expulsion of the Jews from France, the relocation of the papacy to Avignon, the affair of the Templars, the suppression of the heresies of Marguerite Porete and of the Spiritual Franciscans, and the defense of the exempt monastic orders' freedom from all but papal control. The stands he took were often remarkable in themselves: hostility to the expulsion of Jews and spirited defense of the Templars, for example. The book also traces the emergence of King Philip the Fair's (1285-1314) almost paranoid style of rule and its impact on church-state relations, which makes the expression of Jacques de Therines's views all the more courageous.

Europe in the High Middle Ages The Penguin History of Europe

Europe in the High Middle Ages The Penguin History of Europe

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/08/2002

'The Penguin History of Europe series ... is one of contemporary publishing's great projects' New Statesman With a lucid and clear narrative style William Chester Jordan has turned his considerable talents to composing a standard textbook of the opening centuries of the second millennium in Europe. He brings this period of dramatic social, political, economic, cultural, religious and military change, alive to the general reader. Jordan presents the early Medieval period as a lost world, far removed from our current age, which had risen from the smoking rubble of the Roman Empire, but from which we are cut off by the great plagues and famines that ended it. Broad in scope, punctuated with impressive detail, and highly accessible, Jordan's book is set to occupy a central place in university courses of the medieval period.

Ideology and Royal Power in Medieval France Kingship, Crusades and the Jews

Ideology and Royal Power in Medieval France Kingship, Crusades and the Jews

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Hardback Release Date: 26/03/2001

Ideology and Royal Power is a collection of essays describing and assessing the ways in which royal publicists in medieval France conceived the authority of the crown, especially with regard to protecting and defending its Christian subjects from their alleged enemies at home and abroad--corrupt officials, Jews (particularly moneylenders), heretics, and Muslims. A number of the essays also describe the execution of royal policies with respect to these groups and evaluate their impact, both in terms of the groups affected and their influence on further developments in royal ideology. A key figure is that of Louis IX, Saint Louis (r. 1226-1270).

The Great Famine Northern Europe in the Early Fourteenth Century

The Great Famine Northern Europe in the Early Fourteenth Century

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 15/12/1997

The horrors of the Great Famine (1315-1322), one of the severest catastrophes ever to strike northern Europe, lived on for centuries in the minds of Europeans who recalled tales of widespread hunger, class warfare, epidemic disease, frighteningly high mortality, and unspeakable crimes. Until now, no one has offered a perspective of what daily life was actually like throughout the entire region devastated by this crisis, nor has anyone probed far into its causes. Here, the distinguished historian William Jordan provides the first comprehensive inquiry into the Famine from Ireland to western Poland, from Scandinavia to central France and western Germany. He produces a rich cultural history of medieval community life, drawing his evidence from such sources as meteorological and agricultural records, accounts kept by monasteries providing for the needy, and documentation of military campaigns. Whereas there has been a tendency to describe the food shortages as a result of simply bad weather or else poor economic planning, Jordan sets the stage so that we see the complex interplay of social and environmental factors that caused this particular disaster and allowed it to continue for so long. Jordan begins with a description of medieval northern Europe at its demographic peak around 1300, by which time the region had achieved a sophisticated level of economic integration. He then looks at problems that, when combined with years of inundating rains and brutal winters, gnawed away at economic stability. From animal diseases and harvest failures to volatile prices, class antagonism, and distribution breakdowns brought on by constant war, northern Europeans felt helplessly besieged by acts of an angry God--although a cessation of war and a more equitable distribution of resources might have lessened the severity of the food shortages. Throughout Jordan interweaves vivid historical detail with a sharp analysis of why certain responses to the famine failed. He ultimately shows that while the northern European economy did recover quickly, the Great Famine ushered in a period of social instability that had serious repercussions for generations to come.

Women and Credit in Pre-Industrial and Developing Societies

Women and Credit in Pre-Industrial and Developing Societies

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/04/1993

The active role of women in the labor force is not limited to recent decades, or even to the last century. As William Chester Jordan amply demonstrates in Women and Credit in Pre-Industrial and Developing Societies, women in premodern times played an integral part both as a source of labor and as participants in lending and borrowing. In this wide-ranging and provocative study, the author assesses the overall significance of women's work in medieval and early modern Europe, and in colonial and postcolonial societies. While earlier studies have concentrated on women in agriculture or craftwork, Jordan investigates consumption lending and borrowing among women in the European Middle Ages, female investment in early modern Europe, and, in a final section, the role of African and Caribbean marketwomen and their provision of and access to credit. By viewing the historical situation, Jordan sheds light on contemporary concerns about commercialization, the transformation of rural society, and industrialization. He provides a historical and comparative context for some of the current issues that plague the twentieth-century female work force. By understanding the role of gender in such an important aspect of traditional life as credit relationships, Jordan advances an ongoing reexamination of the issue in general. This work will be of interest to students and scholars of medieval and early modern European, African, and Caribbean history; anthropology; and women's studies.

French Monarchy and the Jews From Philip Augustus to the Last Capetians

French Monarchy and the Jews From Philip Augustus to the Last Capetians

Author: William Chester Jordan Format: Hardback Release Date: 01/06/1989

From 1179 to 1328 relations between French Christians and Jews were chronically unstable--exploitation, repression, and expulsion were sanctioned by a government dedicated to a purified Christian state. The French Monarchy and the Jews tells in rich and compelling detail the fate of the Jews in Capetian France. William Chester Jordan assesses the relationship between Jewish policy and the development of royal institutions and ide- ology in the period during which the foundations of the French state were being laid. The royal policy in the early period (the reign of Philip Augustus) was erratic. Official efforts to humiliate the Jews and ruin their businesses were alternated with attempts to provide a climate that encouraged their business while at the same time imposing economic and social disabilities that made other aspects of their lives intolerable. Louis IX, on the other hand, was single-minded in his efforts to induce the Jews to convert. Whatever the policies, Jordan attempts to measure their impact on Jewish and Christian communities. During the reign of Philip the Fair, the Jews were expelled and their property confiscated to the financial benefit of the crown. Jordan comprehensively evaluates the effects of the expulsion of the Jews themselves, especially during the first years of their exile to the principalities bordering the French king's domain. The experience of the Jews during the Middle Ages has been a subject of increasing scholarly interest, and The French Monarchy and the Jews will prove useful to any student or scholar of medieval history.