Crime in Early Bourbon Madrid (1700-1808): An Analysis of the Royal Judicial Court's Casebook

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The social analysis of early modern criminal records has reached a point of development sufficient for new perspectives to arise that explore the agency of individuals, families, and neighbors as well as that of the bureaucratic state. This book contributes to this important discussion with a qualitative and quantitative analysis of over three thousand cases from Spain’s most influential civil and criminal court. This book contains fourteen black and white photographs.


“The history of Bourbon Spain (1700-1808) received far less attention from historians than that of Hapsburg Spain until the 1950s. ... In this study, Fabio López-Lázaro makes an important and original contribution to our knowledge of eighteenth-century Spain.” – William Callahan, Professor Emeritus of History, University of Toronto

Table of Contents

Introduction: “The Public’s Vengeance”
1 Sin, Liability, and Crime: Early Modern Legal Attitudes
2 “Monkeys in Ruffs:” Public Spaces and the Agents of Prosecution
3 “A House for Evil; A Dreadful Place:” The Court and Its Jail
4 “Penishment, not Punishment:” Criminal Case Procedure
5 “No Deceit Safe in Its Hiding Place:” The Trial
6 “Twisted Cucumbers:” The Logic and Reform of Judgments
7 “Acts of Desperation:” The Crimes of Violence and Property
8 “Weakness and Sensual Appetite:” Rape and Sex Crimes
9 A Disappearing Act: Domestic Disputes in the Court
10 Theatricality and Human Blindness: Representations of Crime

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