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Estates, society of
(2,362 words)

1. Estatist society as a model of order

The term estates-based or estatist society (Society [community]) denotes a hegemonial social structural (Order [system]) model of premodern Christian Europe based on a hierarchy of distinct groups or estates, in principle having unequal rights and duties but putatively complementary in their contribution to the body politic (see fig. 1). These groups differed in their legal status, lifestyle, code of conduct, way of earning a livin…

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Mat'a, Petr, “Estates, society of”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 05 March 2024 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_COM_028172>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20180126

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