'Of Laws of Ships and Shipmen': Medieval Maritime Law and its Practice in Urban Northern Europe

Edda Frankot

Research output: Book/ReportBook

25 Citations (Scopus)


This is a comparative analysis of maritime law and its administration in five northern European towns. It has often been assumed that there was a common maritime law in northern Europe, shared between skippers and merchants who conducted their business along the North Sea and Baltic littoral. This study examines this assumption by studying the dissemination of law compilations across this region, and by comparing the contents of these and the judgments passed by urban courts in cases of shipwreck, jettison and ship collision. Medieval maritime law has never before been the subject of a major study in the English language. The practice of maritime law has, up until now, largely been ignored. This book is the first to offer a comparison of maritime laws and court proceedings. It is also unique in that it provides a truly comparative history, covering a large geographical area stretching from Aberdeen on the North Sea coast to Reval (present-day Tallinn) in the innermost regions of the Baltic. Key features: overview of all medieval maritime law compilations; an insight into the workings of medieval urban courts; a unique study of maritime law and legal practice; and, comparative approach allows for impactful conclusions on medieval shipping.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEdinburgh
PublisherEdinburgh University Press
Number of pages240
ISBN (Electronic)9780748668083
ISBN (Print)9780748646241
Publication statusPublished - 31 Aug 2012

Publication series

NameScottish Historical Review Monographs
PublisherEdinburgh University Press


Dive into the research topics of ''Of Laws of Ships and Shipmen': Medieval Maritime Law and its Practice in Urban Northern Europe'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this