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Cross and ScepterThe Rise of the Scandinavian Kingdoms from the Vikings to the Reformation$
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Sverre Bagge

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780691169088

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691169088.001.0001

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State Formation, Social Change, and the Division of Power

State Formation, Social Change, and the Division of Power

(p.119) Chapter Three State Formation, Social Change, and the Division of Power
Cross and Scepter

Sverre Bagge

Princeton University Press

This chapter examines state formation, social change, and the division of power in the Scandinavian kingdoms, focusing in particular on the degree of bureaucratization in general and the extent to which it increased the power of the central government. It first considers social stratification in the High Middle Ages before discussing sources of royal and ecclesiastical revenues such as taxes, fines, and tolls, as well as the income of the Church. It also looks at major changes in the character and importance of Scandinavian trade and how the growth in trade increased town populations and led to the foundation of new towns. Finally, it explains how the division of power in contemporary society—at least at the central level—becomes a question of the relationship between the monarchy, the Church, and the secular aristocracy.

Keywords:   state formation, social change, power division, Scandinavian kingdoms, social stratification, revenues, trade, monarchy, Church, aristocracy

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