At Europe's Borders: Medieval Towns in the Romanian Principalities

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This ambitious work focuses on the emergence and the development of medieval towns in the two Romanian principalities of South-Eastern Europe, Wallachia and Moldavia, from their earliest days, in the 13th century, up to the 16th. It is the only work of its kind in English, but at the same time the first in the field seeking to identify and substantiate common elements between towns in this area of Europe. It also covers Poland, Hungary and the lands south of the Danube. By relying both on various written sources, and on archeological finds, the author addresses several controversial issues, starting from the particulars of urbanization, through an analysis of local institutions, of urban society and economy, and concluding with thorough case studies. The result is a book which shows that medieval towns in the Romanian Principalities, despite being on the outskirts of Europe, were nevertheless part of it.
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Biographical Note

Laurenţiu Rădvan, Ph.D. (2003) in History, University „Al. I. Cuza” Iaşi, is Associate Professor of medieval history at the Department of History of the same university. He has published several works of medieval urban history, mostly devoted to the urbanization process in the Romanian-inhabited area. Member of the International Commission for the History of Towns (2008). Selected volumes: Oraşele din Ţara Românească până la sfârşitul sec. XVI, Iaşi, 2004; Oraşul din spaţiul românesc între Orient şi Occident. Tranziţia de la medievalitate la modernitate, volume of studies, Iaşi, 2007.

Review Quotes

"...le livre de L. Rădvan représente la première synthèse sur la génèse du phenomène urbain dans les pays roumains, une synthèse qui ne manque pas de points de vue nouveaux sur des problèmes difficiles et controversées...”
Andrei Timotin, Journal of South-East European Studies, Vol. XLIX, 2011

Table of contents

CONTENTS
Acknowledgments ....................................................................... xi
Abbreviations .............................................................................. xiii
List of rulers until c. 1550 ......................................................... xv
List of illustrations and maps ..................................................... xvii
Introduction ................................................................................ 1

PART ONE: MEDIEVAL TOWNS IN CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE
Chapter One. Towns in the Kingdom of Poland .................... 27
Emergence and organization .................................................. 27
Population, society and economy ........................................... 39
Topography ............................................................................. 46
Case studies: Wrocław and Kraków ...................................... 47
Chapter Two. Towns in the Kingdom of Hungary ................. 53
Emergence and organization .................................................. 53
Population, society and economy ........................................... 61
Toponymy and topography .................................................... 65
Case studies ............................................................................. 67
Chapter Three. Towns South of the Danube .......................... 87
Towns in Serbia, Bosnia and on the Dalmatian coast .......... 87
Towns in Bulgaria ................................................................... 104

PART TWO: TOWNS IN WALLACHIA
Chapter One. Urbanization ...................................................... 115
Background ............................................................................. 115
The emergence of towns ........................................................ 133
Terminology ............................................................................ 143
Main residences of the prince ................................................ 170
The târgs .................................................................................. 171
Chapter Two. Institutional, social, ethnic and economic
structures ................................................................................. 183
Administration, law, and relations with the ruler .................. 183
The town domain ................................................................... 202
Social and ethnic structures ................................................... 206
Economy ................................................................................. 223
Chapter Three. Case studies ..................................................... 243
Arges 243, Brăila 248, Bucharest 255, Buzău 261,
Câmpulung 264, Craiova 271, Floci 275, Gherghita 277,
Ocna Mare 280, Pitesti 282, Râmnic 286, Râmnicul Sărat 291,
Slatina 293, Târgoviste 295, Târgsor 303, Târgul Jiului 306

PART THREE: TOWNS IN MOLDAVIA
Chapter One. Urbanization ...................................................... 311
Background ............................................................................. 311
The emergence of towns ........................................................ 323
Terminology ............................................................................ 371
Main residences of the prince ................................................ 381
The târgs .................................................................................. 383
Chapter Two. Institutional, social, ethnic and economic
structures ................................................................................. 393
Administration, law, and relations with the ruler .................. 393
The town domain ................................................................... 418
Social and ethnic structures ................................................... 421
Economy ................................................................................. 431
Chapter Three. Case studies ..................................................... 451
Adjud 451, Bacău 453, Baia 458, Bârlad 465, Botosani 469,
Cernăuti 471, Cetatea Albă 473, Cotnari 484, Dorohoi 487,
Fălciu 489, Galati 490, Hârlău 491, Hotin 495, Husi 497,
Iasi 501, Kilia 506, Lăpusna 514, Milcovia and Putna 514,
Neamt 517, Orhei 520, Piatra lui Crăciun 522, Roman 525,
Siret 529, Soroca 533, Suceava 534, Târgul Frumos 541,
Tecuci 542, Tighina 543, Trotus 544, Vaslui 547

Conclusions ................................................................................. 551
Short Glossary ............................................................................ 557
Bibliography ................................................................................ 559
Index ........................................................................................... 595

Readership

All those interested in urban history, the history of the Late Middle Ages in Central and South-Eastern Europe, the emergence of towns, urban institutions, medieval economy and society. Interested institutions: research institutes, academic libraries, public libraries.

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