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  • Herrschaftspraxis und soziale Ordnungen im Mittelalter und in der frühen Neuzeit. Ernst Schubert zum Gedenken
  • Ronnie Po-Chia Hsia
Herrschaftspraxis und soziale Ordnungen im Mittelalter und in der frühen Neuzeit. Ernst Schubert zum Gedenken. Edited by Peter Aufgebauer and Christine van den Heuvel. [Veröffentlichungen der Historischen Kommission für Niedersachsen und Bremen, 232.] (Hannover: Hahnsche Buchhandlung Verlag. 2006. Pp. 591.)

The late Ernst Schubert, Professor for the History of Lower Saxony at the University of Göttingen, served simultaneously as the Director of the Historical Commission for Lower Saxony and Bremen. This collection of thirty-one essays, gathered originally for a sixty-fifth birthday Festschrift, is published now as a memorial volume upon the untimely death of the honoree. The book is divided into five sections: aside from two appendices listing the dissertations directed by Schubert and his published works, the other sections arrange the contributions into four loose thematic groupings that reflect Schubert's own research interests and agenda: i.e., the constitutional and social history of the late medieval Holy Roman Empire, especially the dialectic between local/regional and imperial history, exemplified particularly by cases from the North German realm. Chronologically, the essays range from the Carolingian to the nineteenth century, mirroring the expertise of a professor of Landesgeschichte in the German universities: narrow geographic focus à la longue durée.

A first group of seven essays discuss the theme "King and Empire." Four of these deal with the Middle Ages: Heinz Thomas analyzes the flag symbolisms of Emperor Heinrich VII's journey to Rome; Frank Rexroth analyzes the forced abdication of Adolf von Nassau using the Dominican Chronicle of Colmar; Beate Schuster discusses a work by the twelfth-century writer Odo of Deuil, a pupil of abbé Suger, on the morality of the model ruler; Bernhard Schimmelpfennig surveys the German Pontificale to discuss the image of the German ecclesiastical princes. Peter Aufgebauer's contribution, on the problem of calendar precision and Easter liturgy, is particularly instructive, in that he traces the discussion from Roger Bacon in 1267 to the Gregorian calendar reform of 1582. The interplay between regional and imperial politics is expertly analyzed by Gerd Steinwascher in his study of the relationship between the county of Oldenburg and the Emperor from the early sixteenth to the mid-seventeenth centuries. A similar theme is echoed in Christine van den Heuvel's contribution on the politics of Hannover and the imperial election of 1764.

Another seven essays constitute the second section "Princes and Subjects." The two articles by Heinrich Schmidt and Hajo van Lengen focus on the Friesian region in the fifteenth century; Wilhelm Janssen analyzes the conflict between the ecclesiastical enclave of Xanten and the Lord of Bronkhorst-Batenburg in the late fourteenth century; Dieter Brosius analyzes the relationship between territorial lord and urban jurisprudence, using the court records of the territorial town Dannenberger in the sixteenth century; Werner Buchholz argues for the strong resistance to the Protestant Reformation in [End Page 117] Sweden between 1527 and 1617, a religious innovation imposed from above with the aim to expand royal power; Günther Scheel interprets the ceremonies associated with the visit of the Duchess of Mecklenburg-Schwering to Hannover in 1679; and Rudolf Endres offers a study of the late seventeenth-century planned town St. Georgen.

The cohesion of Section Three is somewhat strained by the large number of essays (ten) included and the diversity of topics. Under the rubric "Social Order" Hans-Werner Goetz reflects on the concept of "foreignness" in the Middle Ages; Hedwig Röckelein discusses the enfeoffment of women; Albrecht Eckhardt surveys the development of towns in medieval Oldenburg; Brage Bei der Wieden traces the formation of a lower nobility in North Germany from the Middle Ages to the sixteenth century; the Latin text of the miracles of the Virgin at Kublingen in 1291 (in Brunswick) is edited and annotated by Sabine Graf; Wolfgang Petke offers tidbits of sources on pilgrims' letters from the late Middle Ages; Jürgen Petersohn studies a noble fraternity in late fifteenth-century Pommerania; Gerhard Streich discusses the forsaking of clerical status by the high nobility in the Middle Ages, usually to rescue a...


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