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'Rich in gold and cloths'? This is the first full-length study of the history of medieval maritime republic of Amalfi that addresses both the internal political, social, and economic history of Amalfi - as an independent city-state, under Norman rule and as part of the Kingdom of Sicily - and the history of its diaspora, those Amalfitans who left temporarily or permanently and whose activities contributed to the image of their home city as a thriving centre specialising in the luxury end of the market.
In reuniting these two disparate strands of its history, Patricia Skinner argues that, instead of being seen in opposition to each other, the very different evidence presented by the internal documentary archives and the narrative accounts of external observers can and should be utilised to reconstruct the ties which bound the emigrants to their home city. By taking a prosopographical approach, she reveals the presence of Amalfitans in many parts of the Italian peninsula and further afield in the Mediterranean. At the same time, she critically re-examines some of the externally-generated views of Amalfitan wealth, suggesting that these may have as much - or more - to do with literary and patronage networks as with the actual situation on the ground.
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