Call for Papers | Making Room for Order: Court Ordinances

Posted in Calls for Papers by Editor on June 3, 2014

I’ve no idea how flexible the end date of 1700 is for the larger Palatium project, but I imagine this workshop will be of interest to many readers. -CH

From the Call for Papers:

Making Room for Order: Court Ordinances as a Source
for Understanding Space at Early Modern Princely Residences

Kalmar Castle, Sweden, 2–3 October 2014

Proposals due by 22 June 2014

Organized by ESF Research Networking Programme PALATIUM with Linnaeus University, Kalmar

One of the obvious sources when analysing how space was used at early modern royal residences are court ordinances. These are however far from as clear‐cut as they may seem. In several instances we can see how a world of order emerges that can easily be an illusion. Court ordinances are thus a rich material to use, but a source that poses a number of important methodological questions. The value of court ordinances has long been apparent. Already in 1761 Friedrich Carl Moser used court ordinances while compiling his work Teutsches Hof‐Recht. A more scholarly approach came later however. In 1905 and 1907 Arthur Kern published Deutsche Hofordnungen des 16. und 17. Jahrhunderts. This was an important step in making court ordinances accessible for research. After Kern various court ordinances have been published for principalities such as Kleve, Aragon, Brandenburg and Burgundy.

For court studies, the analysis of court ordinances has been indispensable. In his groundbreaking research on early modern courts, David Starkey made extensive use of the Eltham Ordinances. The possible Burgundian influences on the late Plantagenet English court, through court ordinances, is an on‐going debate. In later years two important scholarly works on early modern court ordinances have been published. The first, edited by Werner Paravicini, was Höfe und Hofordnungen 1200–1600 in 1999. This was the result of a conference in 1996 by the Residenzen‐Kommission. The second large volume, Zu Diensten Ihrer Majestät: Hofordnungen und Instruktionsbücher am frühneuzeitlichen Wiener Hof, was published in 2011 by Jakob Wührer and Martin Scheutz.

Thus, some scholars have highlighted court ordinances recently. They have however not focussed specifically on royal residences and the interplay between architecture and court life. This leaves a fruitful and rich vein for PALATIUM to tap into. The workshop in Kalmar is aimed at analysing from a methodological standpoint how we can understand the uses and ideas of space at court by deploying court ordinances as a source. It will be necessary to include not just court ordinances proper but also instructions and similar sources. The differences between court ordinances, instructions and other court laws/regulations were fluid at the time and this should be reflected in the discussions.

Naturally court ordinances have methodological issues. Why was a court ordinance drawn up? Was the aim to enforce economy at court or to enhance magnificence? The information we can draw from court ordinances depends to a large degree on such reasons. A number of evident questions to discuss leap to mind. Can we see how the shift from peripatetic to more sedentary courts is reflected in court ordinances? Will court ordinance reflect specific palaces rather than a generic group of royal residences for a prince?

Another obvious issue is how court ordinances both reflect reality and norms. Can we see if court ordinances were translated verbatim without any consideration for spatial differences between courts? Would court ordinances be switched from one architectural setting to another? Did this result in changes in architectural layout? What happened if a new court ordinance clashed with the existing palace plan? Yet another issue concerns whether we can see how different court ordinances influence each other? The example of Burgundy and the court of Edward IV have already been mentioned. Were certain court ordinances especially influential?

The interplay between the spatial reality and court ordinances must always be kept in mind. Perhaps we can deduce what a lost court ordinance looked like by using the architectural material, which can indicate both functions and shifts in those functions.

Papers will be organised around the following three topics:

I. Space and Function: Norm versus Reality
Court ordinances are interesting on two levels. First, they tell us something about prevailing ideas and attitudes within courtly society at the time. Second, they might tell us something about how reality was organised. The second half is, however, far from straightforward. As a normative source, court ordinances pose special problems. How certain can we be that ordinances paint a true picture of how space was used at court? We need case studies that analyse how far the norm was realised. What can ordinances really tell us about the use of certain spaces at certain ceremonies?

II. Invention or Tradition?
Did court ordinances actually introduce real change in how space was organised at princely courts? Can we see if court ordinances precede or follow real changes in palatial space? Perhaps a court ordinance merely reflected already existing usage rather than introducing new ways? Might court ordinances act as a conservative force?

III. A Source Leaving the Residence Partly in Shadow?
An evident methodological issue when using court ordinance is whether there are spaces at royal palaces that fall outside court ordinances? Will certain areas not be covered? Will the hunt, gardens or the menagerie be outside the usual scope? Does that mean that these areas were less constricted by ceremony and regulation?

This workshop is part of the ESF Research Networking Programme PALATIUM: Court Residences as Places of Exchange in Late Medieval and Early Modern Europe (1400–1700). This programme aims at creating a common forum for research on the late medieval and early modern European court residence or ‘palace’ (palatium) with an interdisciplinary perspective. The world of the courts 1400–1700 constituted a network of truly European scale and international character, but its architecture is only rarely studied in its ‘connectivity’. Here the ‘palace’ is seen as a place for cultural exchange. Human interaction in this space is regulated and codified by a set of rules, known as ‘ceremonial’. The interaction between palace architecture (tangible) and ceremonial (intangible, but known through a set of tangible testimonials of different types, written and visual) is one of the key questions the PALATIUM network aims to address. The palace’s space and form carry multiple connotations. To the informed observer they represent power, lineage, and tradition versus innovation. The decoding of this system of signs necessitates input not only by architectural and art historians, but also by various other disciplines, such as archaeology, politics, literature, theatre and music. The PALATIUM programme wants to encourage theoretical and methodological debates in the field, and aims in particular at stimulating exchanges of knowledge and experience between historians, architectural historians, art historians, and researchers in related disciplines—thus building up a network of scholars, institutions and research groups across Europe which mirrors the international network of courts that is being examined. The present methodological workshop fits within section WPM2 of the PALATIUM programme: ‘Heuristics in an Interdisciplinary Perspective’.

The Kalmar meeting is conceived as a methodological workshop. Speakers will be asked to prepare material for discussion in advance. This material may comprise excerpts of one or several court ordinances, or a selection of similar texts that raise pertinent issues, if possible combined with one or more plans of the residences in question. This material will be made available for open access on the PALATIUM website, together with the abstracts of the papers, two months prior to the workshop. During the workshop speakers will give a short paper to present the selected material, followed by discussion.

Workshop participants will have the opportunity to visit Kalmar Castle and Borgholm Castle.

How to Apply?
Abstracts of papers are invited by 22 June 2014. Abstracts should be limited to 300 words, and should be headed with the applicant’s name, his or her professional affiliation, and the title of the paper. All abstracts must be in English, which will be the working language of the workshop, and the language in which papers will be delivered. All papers will be maximum 20 minutes in length. This should be borne in mind when writing your abstract. Abstracts should define the subject and summarize the questions to be raised in the proposed paper. With the abstract please submit a one‐page curriculum vitae, with your full contact details, including an e‐mail address. Send your proposal by e‐mail to the workshop chair, Dr Fabian Persson (fabian.persson@lnu.se), with a copy to the PALATIUM coordinator Dr Pieter Martens (pieter.martens@asro.kuleuven.be). Only one submission per author will be accepted. All applications will be held in confidence during the selection process. All applicants will be notified of the acceptance or refusal of their proposal by 10 July 2014. Accepted speakers will be asked to provide their material for discussion by 31 July 2014.

Grants for Young Scholars
It is one of PALATIUM’s goals to provide young scholars (PhD students and post‐doctoral researchers) with specialized outlets to present their work and build their scientific networks. Therefore PALATIUM strongly encourages early‐career researchers who wish to participate in this workshop to apply for a grant, which will cover travel and accommodation costs. The number of available grants is limited. The selected grantees will be asked to briefly present their work in progress during the workshop. The deadline for grant applications is 30 June 2014. All grant applications must be made online. For more information and the application procedure, see the Grants pages of the PALATIUM website.

Fabian PERSSON (Linnaeus University)

Scientific Committee
Monique CHATENET (Centre André Chastel, INHA, Paris) Krista DE JONGE (University of Leuven), PALATIUM Chair Mark HENGERER (LMU University Munich)
Sebastian OLDEN‐JØRGENSEN (University of Copenhagen) Konrad OTTENHEYM (Utrecht University)
Herbert KARNER (Austrian Academy of Sciences)
Pieter MARTENS (University of Leuven), PALATIUM Coordinator

Coordination and Contact
School of Cultural Sciences Linneaeus University Linnégatan 5
391 82 Kalmar

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