insignificant. But not economic. Whether the medieval frontier was a barrier or a conduit (or both), surely there is room for considering the frontiers between social classes, especially that between aristocrats and peasants, as worthy of inclusion alongside the 'frontiers' between Czechs and Germans, and Germans and Poles. Those aristocrats were, as often as not, colonial intruders who exploited indigenous peoples: beyond the Elbe, the Liffey, the Severn, and the Duero. May not such frontiers have been more frontier-like than some Studied here? The principal debate (implicit rather then explicit throughout this volume) is whether on the frontier the freedom from a distant, centralizing, and in its own terms orderly authority enabled men to be better or allowed them to be worse. The answers provided suggest that it depends upon the nature of the frontier. If the border was political, like that between England and Scotland before the end of the thirteenth century, or that in Ireland after the end of the fourteenth, frontiersmen got on with one another in a neighbourly fashion. On the other hand, if religious difference was what constituted the border, that border was a boundary to all save barbarism. Or almost all: as Angus Mackay and Professor Burns show, convivencia was a reality on the Castilian-Granadan and Aragonese-Valencian frontiers. Nonetheless, how chronically unstable such societies were. One evening a Moorish knight might be laughing at the mock battle in the Christian carnival in Jaen; the next day his scalp might be dangling from the saddle of his Castilian counterpart. Professor Mackay calls the Christian-Muslim frontier in Spain Mariological; there is a connection here with that other barbaric border, the one maintained by the German Order on the Baltic littoral. Brutality is the hallmark of the itinerant, the unsettled, the insecure man of action: the horseman (or cowboy) par excellence. Spain and the Baltic were Europe's Wild West-frontiers proper. The culture of such societies (a culture of active contempt) does appear to be radically different from the others dealt with in the volume. The Welsh March, for example, although it 'seemed to be a criminal's paradise', did not attract criminals-as did the Christian frontier in Spain, the American West, and the Christian-Pagan border in Lithuania. In Wales, as in Ireland (warlike but not war-torn), there was accommodation and co-existence. These may have been 'fragmented frontier societies'; they were not the brutalized world of economic imperialists and religious idealists. Empiricism was the mark of such unideological societies, as it is of this book. C. F. RICHMOND Keele ARCHDEACONRY OF BRECON PROBATE RECORDS, VOL. I: Pre-1660. Compiled by Nansi C. Jones. The National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth, 1989. Pp. xxi, 214. £ 10.00. Following the successful publication by the National Library of its indexes to the probate records of the consistory court of Bangor, we now have a second volume concentrating on the archdeaconry of Brecon in the diocese of St. David's, an area