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Wales and the Britons, 350-1064$
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T. M. Charles-Edwards

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780198217312

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198217312.001.0001

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Kinship and Status

Kinship and Status

(p.293) 9 Kinship and Status
Wales and the Britons, 350-1064

T. M. Charles-Edwards

Oxford University Press

The evidence for kinship and status is more fragmented than it is for relations between peasants and lords. There are hints in the charters, but for a broad picture one has to turn to the lawbooks of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries and, in particular, to those sections which are likely to be substantially ancient — sections which cover inheritance and claims to land. There was not just one pattern of kinship, but a kinship of inheritance and succession, a kinship of status, and a kinship of alliance. The kinship of inheritance was agnatic, the kinship of status bilateral, while the kinship of alliance worked through bilateral links between agnatic lineages. Fosterage was the most important way of creating bonds of artificial kinship.

Keywords:   inheritance, kinship terms, agnatic kinship, bilateral kinship, the kinship of alliance, fosterage

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