Centred on a study of the early archives of the Venerabile Collegio Inglese in Rome, the predecessor of the English College of today, this book is more than a study of the beginnings of English institutions in Rome. It attempts to place the English community there between 1362, when the first English hospice for poor people and pilgrims was founded, and 1420 in its political, commercial and religious setting. It includes a portrait of a group of English merchants, with their wives and widows, as well as members of the papal curia in Rome (from 1376), including a study of Cardinal Adam Easton, a well-known scholar and opponent of John Wycliffe. The book also uncovers a notable although unsuccessful attempt to forward English participation in commerce with Rome before 1420, revealing important links between the English laity in Rome and the city of London.
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