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Thomas Wolf c. Richard de Abingdon, 1293-1295: a case study of legal argument

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

Published
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>31/01/2020
<mark>Journal</mark>The Journal of Ecclesiastical History
Issue number1
Volume71
Number of pages19
Pages (from-to)40-58
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date18/09/19
<mark>Original language</mark>English

Abstract

This essay examines the legal arguments in Wolf c. Abingdon, a tithes dispute from 1293–5 between the rector and the vicar of Aldington, Kent. The case records contain explicit citations to written law, a surprising find in a seemingly minor case. The presence of explicit citations in particular suggests first that the litigants had access to legal assistance in the provincial court, and second that advocates and possibly judges were turning to written legal sources to resolve disputed points. This essay shows how the litigants' arguments were constructed and determines whether or not these arguments were effective in court.