Peasant Perceptions of Landscape: Ewelme Hundred, South Oxfordshire, 500-1650 (Medieval History and Archaeology) (Hardcover)
Peasant Perceptions of Landscape marks a change in the discipline of landscape history, as well as making a major contribution to the history of everyday life. Until now, there has been no sustained analysis of how ordinary medieval and early modern people experienced and perceived their material environment and constructed their identities in relation to the places where they lived. This volume provides exactly such an analysis by examining peasant perceptions in one geographical area over the long period from AD 500 to 1650. The study takes as its focus Ewelme hundred, a well-documented and archaeologically-rich area of lowland vale and hilly Chiltern wood-pasture comprising fourteen ancient parishes. The analysis draws on a range of sources including legal depositions and thousands of field-names and bynames preserved in largely unpublished deeds and manorial documents. Archaeology makes a major contribution, particularly for understanding the period before 900, but more generally in reconstructing the fabric of villages and the framework for inhabitants' spatial practices and experiences. In its focus on the way inhabitants interacted with the landscape in which they worked, prayed, and socialised, Peasant Perceptions of Landscape supplies a new history of the lives and attitudes of the bulk of the rural population who so seldom make their mark in traditional landscape analysis or documentary history.
Stephen Mileson, Stuart Brookes Stephen Mileson is a landscape historian who works for the Victoria County History of Oxfordshire. He teaches at Oxford University, and he has published widely on medieval landscapes and social history. His publications include an article in Past and Present on 'Openness and Closure in the Later Medieval Village'. Stephen is editor of the journal Oxoniensia. Stuart Brookes is a Senior Research Associate at UCL and author of seven monographs and edited volumes, including (with John Baker) Beyond the Burghal Hidage, winner of the 2013 Verbruggen Prize in Military History. Stuart is editor of The Antiquaries Journal and Wiltshire Archaeological and Natural History Magazine.