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Chapter Summary

This chapter is concerned with issues of remarriage, property, and power. In the three areas examined - consent in marriage, wardship and control of children's property, and property transactions and management - overall patterns have emerged. Although it is often difficult to see a widow's strategy concerning remarriage due to insufficient information, it appears as if widows in Iceland had greater room for manoeuvre. The ways in which an Icelandic widow could exercise power through her property appear to have been varied, but the saga evidence is sparse. The most common was administration of an heir's paternal property, which often appears to have brought a widow wealth and social status, sometimes even political control. In Yorkshire power derived from the use of property can be divided into three areas - religious patronage, acts of lordship and grants to family members.

Keywords: Iceland; power of widows; property; remarriage; Yorkshire



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