Medieval Westminster 1200-1540

Rosser, Gervase
Date published: 
January 1989

As a royal capital, Westminster was unique: a small town, characterized by a complex economy and society, but lacking legal incorporation. Gervase Rosser examines the nature of the urban community. Given social diversity and competing interests, what forces existed to contain tensions and ensure continuity? The regular expressions of shared interests and common identity - in local government, parochial life, and the activities of guilds - are perceived to be essential to the survival of the town. Gervase Rosser's argument has implications not only for the history of the s mall town, but for the history of urbanization throughout the medieval and early modern period.


This is a broad-ranging social and economic history of Westminster, a typical urban centre of the period. Rosser studies the nature of the urban community and presents an argument which has far-reaching implications for the study of medieval and early modern urbanization.

Winner of the Whitfield Prize 1989