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The mourners of Philip the Bold's tomb: structures of feeling in the earlier Valois Burgundian State

Murray, AFD; (2016) The mourners of Philip the Bold's tomb: structures of feeling in the earlier Valois Burgundian State. Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London).

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Abstract

This thesis is a study of the mourning figures integrated into the tomb of Philip the Bold of Burgundy (made between 1378 -1411). I argue that the form and iconography of the mourners were influenced by three historical developments in fourteenth-century France: first, the intensification of the social division of labour; second, the increasing negotiation of the rituals of mourning between the lay and clerical classes; and third, the ideas of mutual love and obligation between ruler and subject as they developed in Burgundy in the period after the 1378-86 Flemish rebellion. Adopting a concept from Raymond Williams I argue that each of these developments produce certain ‘structures of feeling’ (i.e. sets of ideas and practices that influence how social life is experienced) and that such structures of feeling are mediated by Philip the Bold’s tomb. The chapter on labour shows how experiences of individual and institutional agency in artistic production would have affected the reception of the tomb materials as a manifestation of ducal power and sculptural skill. The chapter on mourning ritual revises the idea of the ‘clericisation’ of mourning, i.e., that rituals of reclusion, the wearing of black mourning robes and muted weeping was adopted due to clerical influence. And the chapter on lord-subject ideology argues that the abstract elements of the mourners (their anonymity and non-processional nature) were a means to visually manifest an idealised loving relation between lord and subject. Taking these structures of feeling as a whole, they produce a more convincing and compelling periodisation for the style of Philip’s tomb than that provided by the ‘medieval’ and ‘Renaissance’ narratives in which it is usually placed. The tomb can instead be thought of as the product of feudal states as they formed in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: The mourners of Philip the Bold's tomb: structures of feeling in the earlier Valois Burgundian State
Event: HISTORY OF ART
Language: English
Keywords: medieval tombs, Philip the Bold, Burgundy, Mourning
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of History of Art
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1474846
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