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Lordship and FaithThe English Gentry and the Parish Church in the Middle Ages$
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Nigel Saul

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198706199

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198706199.001.0001

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Patterns of Burial

Patterns of Burial

(p.161) 8 Patterns of Burial
Lordship and Faith

Nigel Saul

Oxford University Press

This chapter looks at two notable trends in the burial patterns of the gentry that are observable in the late Middle Ages—the first, the shift away from burial with the monks and friars to burial in the local parish church; and, the second, the gradual migration of gentry burials within that church after 1300 away from the nave and side chapels and into the chancel. The chapter suggests that the former trend is to be explained in terms of the growing territorialization of gentry power in the thirteenth century, and the latter by a combination of factors, chief among them the increasing recognition of church rebuilders as ‘founders’ in the legal sense; the example set by the higher nobility, who were increasingly seeking chancel burial in this period; and the mood of intense Eucharistic fervour that characterized the late Middle Ages.

Keywords:   burial, mass, tombs, monuments, chancel, chantries

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