Dr. Victòria Burguera-Puigserver



Dr. Victòria A. Burguera-Puigserver

Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg

Zentrum für Europäische Geschichts- und Kulturwissenschaften (ZEGK)

Historisches Seminar

Marstallstraße 6 

69117 Heidelberg



Room 411 in the branch office of the History Department (Marstallstraße)

Phone: +49 (0)6221 547859

E-mail: victoria.burguera-puigserver@zegk.uni-heidelberg.de


Office hours:

By appointment 


Research interests:

  • History of maritime predation and naval warfare in the Medieval Mediterranean
  • History of captivity and Christian-Islamic relations
  • History of the Crown of Aragon and its Mediterranean holdings
  • History of coastal defense systems
  • History of the Western Mediterranean


Curriculum Vitae:

  • Since October 2022: POST-Doc Researcher at the Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg (DFG Project “Medieval Maritime Predation –A Database Supported Analysis of Mediterranean Violence”, PI: Prof. Dr. Nikolas Jaspert)
  • June 2022-September 2022: POST-Doc Researcher at the University of the Balearic Islands (Project “Citizens and Knights; Municipality and Kingdom. Naval warfare as an instrument of social and political ascension in 15th century Majorca”)
  • 2021-2022: Associate lecturer/Adjunct professor at the University of Barcelona
  • 2020: PhD in Medieval Cultures at the University of Barcelona: “The Sea Dangers. Piracy, Captivity and the Defense Systems of the Coast in the Crown of Aragon (1410-1458)”. Advisors: Prof. Dr. Roser Salicrú i Lluch (IMF-CSIC Barcelona) and Prof. Dr. Maria Barceló Crespí (University of the Balearic Islands) [funded by a public pre-doc grant from the Government of the Balearic Islands]
  • 2015: MA in Medieval Cultures at the University of Barcelona
  • 2013: Bachelor’s Degree in History at the University of the Balearic Islands (Best Academic Record Award in History of 2008-2013 cohort)


Main publications:

  • Entre el negoci privat i la caritat popular. El rescat de captius a la Corona d’Aragó baixmedieval (1410-1458) (Madrid: CSIC, demnächst).
  • El rescate de cautivos musulmanes: nueva clave de las relaciones Mallorca-Magreb en la Baja Edad Media, Medievalismo, 32 (2022): pp. 69-95.
  • Deudas y embargos. La otra cara de las compraventas de esclavos en la Mallorca de principios del siglo XV, Espacio Tiempo y Forma. Serie III. Historia Medieval, 35 (2022): pp. 171-198.
  • Els perills de la mar i la gestió del conflicte marítim a la Corona d’Aragó dels dos primers Trastàmara (1410-1458), Butlletí de la Societat Catalana d’Estudis Històrics, 33 (2022): pp. 435-460.
  • Enmity Among Friends at Sea during the Reign of Ferdinand I, in K. Bergqvist, K. Villads Jensen, A. John Lappin (eds.), War, Diplomacy and Peacemaking in Medieval Iberia (Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2021), pp. 185-215. ISBN: 1-5275-6153-4.
  • [collaboration] Pirates et corsairs, in V. Baby-Collin, S. Bouffier, S. Mourlane (dir.), Atlas des migrations en Méditerranée. De l’Antiquité à nos jours (Arles: Actes Sud, 2021). ISBN: 978-2-330-14501-9.
  • «Car més val contendre ab la quartana que ab flaquea». Conflictividad marítima en tiempos de carestía en la Corona de Aragón a principios del siglo XV, Revista Universitaria de Historia Militar, 6.11 (2017), pp. 43-61.
  • La conflictivitat marítima en temps de Ferran d’Antequera (1412-1416), Drassana, 25 (2017), pp. 24-38.


Academic awards: 

  • December 2021: Award for the best Dissertation thesis (XXXI Noguera’s Fundation award, given by College of Notaries of Barcelona).
  • March 2021: Medievalismo Award, given by the Sociedad Española de Estudios Medievales [Spanish Society for the Medieval Studies], for the best article: El rescate de cautivos musulmanes: nueva clave de las relaciones Mallorca-Magreb en la Baja Edad Media [The Rescue of Muslim Captives: New Relationship Key between Majorca and the Maghrib in the Late Middle Ages].
  • December 2016: Antoni de Capmany’s Award for the best Final Work of Master, granted by the Museu Marítim of Barcelona. The work was titled Pirateria, captiveri i sistemes de defensa costanera a la Corona d’Aragó durant el regnat de Ferran d’Antequera (1412-1416) [Piracy, Captivity and the Defence Systems of the Coast in the Crown of Aragon during the reign of Ferdinand of Antequera (1412-1416)].
  • July 2014: Excellence Award, which recognized the highest academic ranking, within the 2008- 2013 cohort.


Dissertation (University of Barcelona, 2020)


The Sea Dangers

Piracy, Captivity and Maritime Conflict Management in the Crown of Aragon


The PhD dissertation offers a diversified picture of the management of maritime threats and conflicts in the Crown of Aragon between 1410 and 1458. The chronology covers one of the periods of the Crown’s maximum expansion in the Mediterranean: from the end of the reign of Martin the Humane, the last king of the house of Barcelona, to the death of the second king of the house Trastámara, Alfonso the Magnanimous. This research undertakes the point of view of the three most important maritime cities of the Crown: Barcelona, Valencia and Majorca.

The thesis is structured in four big chapters. The first one, by way of introduction, reconstructs the origins of the connections between different management authorities and the maritime war. It analyses the role of the king in controlling privateers and his own fleet, commanded by the admiral; the role of maritime cities, and, successively, that of the Diputació and merchant corporations. The second chapter analyzes the function and composition of the royal fleet and cities’ fleet. The third one deals with the privateering war and includes its objectives, its evolution through various political circumstances and its effects. Finally, the fourth part is dedicated to captivity as a consequence of piracy. This last chapter focuses on the ransoming means linked to the economic duality capturerescue and on the double use and profitability of human captures between Christians and Muslims.

Privateering, piracy and naval warfare in general, as parts of the same triangular prism, represented economic activities strongly influenced by political decisions and the rhythms of international diplomacy. Consequently, they entailed important social repercussions. During the reign of the first Trastámara, offensive-defensive mechanisms and the relevant behavior and reply to maritime threats by the institutions of the Crown of Aragon set the precedents for future actions while being exclusively representatives of a political, administrative and conceptual reality in process of transformation.


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Last change: 10.02.2024
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