The History Department at Moravian College

Janet Loengard

Email: loengardj [at]

Current research: I am currently working on a project on women’s litigation in the king’s courts in England, 1243-1245.  I am also editing a volume called “The England of King John and Magna Carta” based on contributions from a conference at Penn State last March.  Besides an introduction, I will contribute with a chapter on widows, their dower and maritagium, and the effect the Magna Carta had on their property rights.

Selected Publications:

  • “The Assize of Nuisance: Origins of an Action at Common Law”, Cambridge Law Journal vol. 37 (April, 1978)
  • “An Elizabethan Lawsuit: John Brayne, his Carpenters, and the Building of the Red Lion Theatre,” Shakespeare Quarterly vol. 34 no. 3 (Fall, 1983)
  • “Of the Gift of her Husband: Dower in England c. 1200” in Women of the Medieval World, ed. Julius Kirshner and Suzanne Wmple (Oxford and New York: Basil Blackwell, 1985)
  • “Legal History and the Medieval Englishwoman: A Fragmented View”, Law and History Review 4:1 (April, 1986)
  • London Viewers and their Certificates, 1508-1558 (London: London Record Society, 1989)
  • “’Legal History and the Medieval Englishwoman’ Revisited: Some New Directions” in Medieval Women and the Sources of Medieval History, ed. Joel Rosenthal (Athens, Ga.: University of Georgia Press, 1990)
  • Rationabilis Dos: Calculating the Widow’s ‘Fair Share’ in the Earlier Thirteenth Century” in Wife and Widow in Medieval England, ed. Sue Sheridan Walker (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1994)
  • “Beyond Maitland: the Maturing of a Discipline” (review essay), Journal of British Studies (October, 1995)
  • “Common Law for Margery: Separate but not Equal” in Women in Medieval Western European Culture, ed. Linda Mitchell (New York: Garland Press, 1999)
  • “Plate, Good Stuff, and Household Things: Husbands, Wives, and Chattels in England at the End of the Middle Ages”  in Tant d’Emprises – So Many Undertakings: Essays in Honour of Anne F. Sutton (2003)
  • “Medieval English Courts and Women” and “Feme Sole” in Women and Gender in Medieval Europe: An Encyclopedia, ed. Margaret Schaus (Routledge, 2006).
  • “Lords’ Rights and Neighbors’ Nuisances: Mills and Medieval English Law” in Wind and Water in the Middle Ages, ed. Steven A. Walton (Arizona, 2006)
  • “’Which may be said to be her own’: widows and goods in late medieval England” in Medieval Domesticity, ed. Maryanne Kowaleski and P.J.P. Goldberg (Cambridge, 2008)
  • “Women and Law” and “Nuisance” in the Oxford Encyclopedia of Legal History (Oxford, forthcoming)
  • “Assize” and “Statute of Merton” in the Oxford Dictionary of the Middle Ages, ed. Robert Bjork(Oxford, forthcoming)