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Chapter Summary

This chapter provides concluding remarks on a comparison of the property, remarriage and identity of widows in medieval Iceland and Yorkshire. There were advantages and disadvantages for widows in both Iceland and Yorkshire. There was a give and take between freedom of manoeuvre and security, with more possibility for sexual freedom and the influencing of the future of one's offspring in the former, and more opportunity for power and authority derived through land transactions in the latter. There is no room for absolutes here. It is misleading to say that widows were powerful or powerless generally, and it is not possible to say that widows in one region were better or worse off than in the other. An individual widow's circumstances determined how much room she had for manoeuvre, and thus how much power or authority she might exercise, within the overall limits dictated by the basic structures of society.

Keywords: Iceland; property; remarriage; widows; Yorkshire

10.1163/ej.9789004184718.i-494.40
/content/books/10.1163/ej.9789004184718.i-494.40
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