Negotiating Space: Power, Restraint, and Privileges of Immunity in Early Medieval Europe


The author argues that immunities were markers of power. By placing restraints on themselves & their agents, kings demonstrated their authority & affirmed their status. The legacy of the immunity reverberates in the modern world, where liberal institutions, with their emphasis on state restraint, clash with others that encourage governmental intrusion. The protections against unreasonable searches & seizures provided by English common law & the U.S. Constitution developed in part out of the medieval experience of immunities & the institutions that were elaborated to breach them.

Additional information

Publisher: Place of publication:
  • Ithaca, NY
Publication year:
  • 1999


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