What are you looking for?

Andrews, Frances

Andrews, Frances


Frances Andrews, born in Sydney, Australia, in 1961. Ph.D. from University of London. Professor of Mediaeval History at University of St Andrews.

Fellow (1 September 2015 – 30 June 2016)

Negotiating Office, between Religious and Secular Elites. Italy and Europe c.1215-c.1450

Research Question

Why and how did men who had taken religious vows become involved as paid, term-bound officials in urban governments?

How did this practice change across the last centuries of the Middle Ages and with what effect?

How does the Italian evidence sit within a wider European picture?

Project Description

My research investigates collaboration and cohesion between religious and secular elites in later medieval Europe, with especial regard to Italy, c.1215-c.1450. I seek to expose the social and legal norms underlying an apparently simple phenomenon: the paid employment of monks, penitents and other regular religious in numerous government offices. The aim is to produce a spatial and chronological ‘map’ of the stipendiary employment of such religious in the Italian city-states, and an in-depth comparative analysis, integrated with evidence drawn from across Europe. I envisage the result as a contribution to debates about (amongst other questions) trust, identity, and reputation, while also modifying conventional narratives of secularisation.

Selected Publications

1) (ed. and contrib.) Churchmen and Urban Government in Late Medieval Italy c. 1200-c. 1450: Cases and Contexts (Cambridge, 2013)

2) The Early Humiliati (Cambridge, 1999)

3) ‘Living like the laity?: The negotiation of religious status in the cities of late medieval Italy’, Transactions of the Royal Historical Society, 20 (2010), 27-55

Personal page