By Samantha Kelly

This quantity analyses Robert of Naples' regulations and photograph within the context of bigger shifts in rulership from the center a while to the early glossy interval. Treating kingship as a joint company of king and courtroom, it attracts on an interdisciplinary variety of resources from chronicles, sermons, well known poetry and artworks to diplomatic and archival documents, to reconsider the key problems with his reign and underscore the significance of image-making and negotiation to his rule. the ultimate bankruptcy tracks the legacy of his picture as ''the Wise'', followed by means of later 14th-century kings of France, Bohemia and England ahead of its eclipse in favour of princely prudence within the Renaissance.

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Extra resources for The New Solomon: Robert of Naples (1309-1343) and Fourteenth-Century Kingship

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Just as crucial, and until recently almost completely overlooked, is the evidence offered by Robert’s preaching. The hundreds of sermons Robert composed make his preaching one of the most remarkable aspects of his rule, and make the king himself as much an architect of the royal image as any of his learned supporters. 26 When Robert’s documented actions are set beside the commentary that both he and his supporters produced, a much fuller picture of the details and overall direction of royal policy emerges.

Some were virtual co-architects of policy; others drafted the legal theory on which Angevin dominion rested, or composed political tracts that explained (or explained away) royal actions. Taken together, such texts indicate the dominant ideas circulating at court. Finally, these courtiers were the main authors of that royal propaganda that shaped and disseminated Robert’s royal image—an image that is crucial for apprehending their concept of ideal kingship, and that affected contemporary observers’ reception as much as did the king’s actions themselves.

31 The growing importance of super- and subnational forces over the last hundred years has situated us well to overcome this blind spot. 32 Nor should the undeniable travails of the kingdom under Robert’s successor be read back onto his reign. If anything, the later misfortunes of the kingdom illustrate precisely what was significant about Robert’s rule. In the context of the fourteenth century, in the face of destructive forces, natural and manmade, that would undo his successor, Robert implemented an approach to rulership that not only preserved his realm and glorified his memory but that in many ways appears emblematic of the age.

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