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The Logic of Political Conflict in Medieval CitiesItaly and the Southern Low Countries, 1370-1440$
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Patrick Lantschner

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198734635

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198734635.001.0001

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Bologna and Liège

Bologna and Liège

Volatile Systems of Conflict

Chapter:
(p.95) 5 Bologna and Liège
Source:
The Logic of Political Conflict in Medieval Cities
Author(s):

Patrick Lantschner

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198734635.003.0006

In late medieval Bologna and Liège, urban warfare represented a particularly frequent mode of conflict. This was reflected, and in turn stimulated, by a political framework of rich, but highly unsettled, internal and external political units. Unusually politicized ecclesiastical institutions in Liège and a powerful university-related agency in Bologna, as well as guilds and parties or factions in both cities were well-resourced, but lacked integration into a coherent political framework. All this had the effect of stimulating or even forcing city dwellers to seek ever newly-configured political coalitions, which often relied on violence to establish themselves. Internal volatility was complemented by volatility outside the city walls: neighbouring cities in the hinterland of Liège and powerful forces in Bologna’s contado, external warfare and the Great Schism all contributed to this unstable environment, and fuelled the extraordinary frequency of revolt in Bologna and Liège.

Keywords:   Bologna, Papal State, Liège, revolt, university, ecclesiastical institution, guild, party, faction, contado, warfare, Great Schism

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