Quentin Verreycken was a Fellow of the Kolleg from July 2021 to June 2022.
since 2020 University of Louvain
F.R.S.-FNRS Postdoctoral Researcher
since 2019 Saint-Louis University, Brussels
2018 – 2019 Harvard University
Belgian American Educational Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow
2014 – 2018 University of Louvain and Saint-Louis University, Brussels
F.R.S.-FNRS Research Fellow
2016 University of Southampton
2013 – 2014 Saint-Louis University, Brussels
Forgiving at the Crossroads of Norms: The Power to Pardon in Late Medieval England and France
My research project examines the regulation of the royal power to pardon and its relationship with social and legal normativity in medieval Europe, focusing on thirteenth to fifteenth century England and France as a comparative case study.
The first axis of my research investigates the development of the pardon legislation in late medieval England and France. An important tool in the construction of royal power, the granting of pardon letters was also frequently accused to favour a culture of impunity among criminal offenders. Consequently, I will explore how the use of pardon was perceived and debated in the English Parliament and the French General Estates and how these two representative assemblies consequently compelled the monarchs to promulgate a legislation that restrained access to royal mercy.
The second axis of my research examines to what extent the royal pardon drew its legitimacy from a series of norms inherited from Roman law and canon law. Here, I will particularly investigate the complex relationships between the granting of pardons, the plurality of legal orders in England and France, and the application of the moral principles of a fair application of justice that dominated in the medieval period – such as clementia, misericordia, and equitas.
Using this double approach, my research aims to demonstrate that, although the granting of pardons to criminal offenders in the late Middle Ages may be considered as an exception to the regular application of the law, the royal power to pardon itself was not entirely above law and even favoured the unification of judicial practices under royal authority.
Verreycken, Quentin, L’État de grâce. La bureaucratie du pardon au Moyen Âge, Bruxelles, Académie royale de Belgique (in preparation).
Verreycken, Quentin, Pardonner le soldat au Moyen Âge. France, Angleterre et espace bourguignon au XVe siècle, Paris (accepted for publication).
Verreycken, Quentin, „En nous humblement requerant“. Crime narrations and rhetorical strategies in late medieval pardon letters, in: Open Library of Humanities 5 (2019), 1-31.
Verreycken, Quentin, The power to pardon in late medieval and early modern Europe. New perspectives in the history of crime and criminal justice, in: History Compass 17 (2019).
Verreycken, Quentin, “Pour nous servir en l’armée.” Le gouvernement et le pardon des gens de guerre sous Charles le Téméraire, duc de Bourgogne (1467-1477), Louvain-la-Neuve 2014.