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James Stewart

Sixth-year doctoral student (in 2016-2017), Department of English
Marco Haslam Dissertation Fellowship                                                                                                             
Project:  Middle English Romance and Noblemen in Need

The knight in medieval England rarely worked alone.  Whether he served under a magnate or at the head of a regiment, a knight was almost always a part of a much larger company of men.  This study explores how medieval English romances portray ideals of nobility in light of the social circumstances of English noblemen, particularly their interdependent relationships with their retinues.  This dissertation argues that English romance poets, as they imagined ideals of nobility, expanded their conceptions of chivalry beyond a hero's displays of exceptional prowess and looked as well to his ability to work with a retinue in order to show how medieval noblemen should exercise their power.

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