Matt Phillips (Nottingham) Pearsall Fellow

Voices from the lower deck: Shipping, trade and the English navy during the Hundred Years’ War

Matt recently completed his PhD at the University of Nottingham under the supervision of Gwilym Dodd. His thesis examined petitions presented by bishops to the English crown in the 14th century and used these documents to explore the different ways in which the late medieval episcopate sought to utilise royal justice in order to safeguard their episcopal temporalities. His current research focuses on the reaction of maritime communities, and English society more generally, to naval policies adopted throughout the course of the Hundred Years’ War. This involves the systematic analysis of petitions concerning naval affairs contained in the ‘Ancient Petitions’ series (SC 8) at The National Archives. The project also seeks to explore the phenomenon of truce-time trading and, in particular, how merchants appealed to the equitable jurisdiction of the king as part of a risk-management strategy designed to offset the dangers posed by the very real possibility that their assets would be lost at sea or seized in foreign ports.