Feminae: Medieval Women and Gender Index


  • Record Number: 9758
  • Author(s)/Creator(s): Bothwell , James.
  • Contributor(s):
  • Title: The Management of Position: Alice Perrers, Edward III, and the Creation of a Landed Estates, 1362-1377
  • Source: Journal of Medieval History 24, 1 (March 1998): Pages 31 - 51.
  • Description:
  • Article Type: Journal Article
  • Subject (See Also): Concubines Economics Land Tenure Perrers, Alice, Mistress of Edward III, King of England
  • Geographic Area: British Isles
  • Century: 14
  • Related Resources:
  • Primary Evidence:
  • Illustrations: Three figures. Figure One Map of England showing the manorial acquisitions of Alice Perrers. The numbers are keyed to the table at the end of the article. Figure Two Alice Perrers' seal (British Library CLXV4). Figure Three Joanna and Robert Skerne, the daughter and son-in-law of Alice Perrers. Skerne memorial brass, parish church, Kingson Upon Thames.
  • Table: Table of the manorial acquisitions of Alice Perrers. It is divided into royal grants and "independent" acquisitions.
  • Abstract: The role of royal mistress in the Middle Ages was mainly a passive one. Her position, her wealth, and even her fate were dependent upon the will of the king. There was. however, at least one notable exception. Alice Perrers, the mistress of Edward III, transcended her designated place early on in her career to become one of the wealthiest landowning women in later fourteenth-century England. More importantly, unlike many male royal favourites of the period, she did so primarily not through direct royal intervention but of her own initiative--making free use of the funds available to the king, but letting her own business sense determine the form their conversion into landed wealth would take. Indeed, while Perrers obviously used her position "vis à vis" Edward III to promote her own interests, the lands she acquired without direct royal patronage can nonetheless be shown to form the vast majority of her properties upon her forfeiture in 1377. This article examines the main features of one of the fastest , and most impressive, accumulations of a landed estate by a woman in the later Middle Ages. [Reprinted from the Journal of Medieval History (at http://www.elsevier.nl/locate/jmedhist), Vol. 24, No. 1, Bothwell, James, "The Management of Position," p. 31, 1998 with permission from Elsevier Science.]
  • Author's Affiliation: University of York
  • Conference Info: - , -
  • Year of Publication: 1998.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN/ISBN: 03044181
  • Material/Technique :
  • Rights: