In this important study, Trevor Dean examines the history of crime and criminal justice in Italy from the mid-thirteenth to the end of the fifteenth century. The book contains studies of the most frequent types of prosecuted crime such as violence, theft and insult, along with the rarely prosecuted sorcery and sex crimes. Drawing on a diverse and innovative range of sources, including legislation, legal opinions, prosecutions, chronicles and works of fiction, Dean demonstrates how knowledge of the history of criminal justice can illuminate our wider understanding of the Middle Ages. Issues and instruments of criminal justice reflected the structure and operation of state power; they were an essential element in the evolution of cities and they provided raw material for fictions. Furthermore, the study of judicial records provides insight into a wide range of social situations, from domestic violence to the oppression of ethnic minorities.
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Number of pages: 238
Weight: 350 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 14 mm
"Historians working in a number of fields will undoubtedly want to tackle his conclusions and forward the debate--perhaps the best kind of compliment for a book of this sort... This is a book that provides both the theoretical justification for its approach and the practical demonstration of its worth, and it deserves a very wide readership."
-Frances Andrews, H-Law
"Dean writes with a clear, straightforward, and even Spartan style...a nuanced examination of crime throughout Italy, providing a much needed survey of Italian criminal justice."
Sarah Whitten, UCLA, Comitatus
"This is a carefully constructed, well-written, even understated study of an important set of issues in social and legal history. Those who read it...will be impelled to move beyond where Dean has gone, less because of failings or omissions than because of his sensible lead." -Thoman Kuehn, Speculum: A Journal of Medieval Studies
"Social historians, legal historians, and students of medieval Italy will be glad to find a place on thier shelves for this engaging, well-written, and superbly researched book." -Blake R. Beattie, The Historian