Hospitals in Communities of the Late Medieval Rhineland

Hospitals in Communities of the Late Medieval Rhineland

From the mid-twelfth century onwards, the development of European hospitals was shaped by their claim to the legal status of religious institutions, with its attendant privileges and responsibilities. The questions of whom hospitals should serve and why they should do so have recurred — and been invested with moral weight — in successive centuries, though similarities between medieval and modern debates on the subject have often been overlooked. Hospitals’ legal status as religious institutions could be tendentious and therefore had to be vigorously defended in order to protect hospitals’ resources. This status could also, however, be invoked to impose limits on who could serve in and be served by hospitals. As recent scholarship demonstrates, disputes over whom hospitals should serve, and how, find parallels in other periods of history and current debates.

  • Cover
  • Table of Contents
  • Acknowledgements
  • Introduction
  • 1. Houses of God
  • 2. Civic Hospitals in the City and Archdiocese of Mainz
  • 3. Mainz’s Hospital Sisters and the Rights of Religious Women
  • 4. Leprosaria and the Leprous: Legal Status and Social Ties
  • 5. “For all miserable persons”: Small and Extra-Urban Hospitals
  • 6. Hospitals and their Networks: Recreating Relationships
  • Conclusion
  • Bibliography
  • Index
  • List of Figures
    • Figure 1: Hospitals of Mainz in the 14th century (J.W. Greenlee)



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