Without Fear or Shame: On Women and Honor in Early Merovingian Times
Editions Albin Michel
Historians have long viewed the Merovingian world (481-750 A.D.) as barbaric. Its women in particular have often been considered ruthlessly cruel and ambitious. In her new study, Nira Pancer reexamines these past beliefs, providing us with a far more complex understanding of Merovingian society. Long dismissed by historiographers as mere curiosities or aberrations, it is revealed here that Merovingian queens were in fact, like their male counterparts, obeying an unspoken code of honor aimed at preserving family as well as personal values. In addition, these women enjoyed great sexual freedom, and were powerful participants in their kingdom’s violent political upheavals.
Pancer Pancer : Nira Pancer is a distinguished history professor at Haifa University.