Feudalism Notes

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  • 1.Feudalism of the Middle Ages SOL WHI 9

2. What is feudalism?After the death of Charlemagne,organized government disappearedEurope became ruled by independentleadersThis political organization is known as theFeudal System or Feudalism relationship between lords and vassals.People entered into the feudal contract forprotection. 3. The Structure of FeudalismKingAnd Queen Church OfficialsAnd Nobles KnightsPeasants 4. Social GroupsNobles - Lords Granted land to a lesser noble while retainingownership This allowed the lesser noble the ability to maintaintheir household The grant of the land was called a fief The person who received the land was called avassal Vassals could further divide the land and become alord 5. The system cont - A Count was a nobleman in charge of an area of land called a county - The lords messenger missi dominici were men sent out to local districts to ensure that the counts were carrying out the kings wishes.- The fiefs became hereditary -Primogeniture is the system of inheritance from fatherto eldest son- Essentially, every landholder was a vassal to the King- But, the King only controlled those living on his feudallands 6. Rights of WomenWomen had limitedproperty rights Woman may have fiefs in her dowry With marriage, her husband gained control of the dowry 7. Feudal JusticeThree kinds of feudal trials Trial by battleDetermined by the outcome of the duel Compurgation (oath taking)Accused and accuser were supported bypeople who swore their side was telling thetruth Trial by ordealDetermined by how the accused survived aparticular ordeal (ex. Immersion in coldwater) 8. Medieval ManorsManors were large farming estates thatincluded manor houses, cultivated lands,woodlands, pastures, fields, and villagesNo central authority or organized tradeHow did they get what they needed? 9. Self-sufficiencyManors were forced to be self sufficient They produced everything they needed Items like iron, salt, wood, wine, and othermanufactured goods were purchased Land of the manor was shared by a lord andseveral peasant families About one-third of land was kept for the lord,while the rest was farmed by the peasants 10. Manor VillagesPeasants gave the lord some of theircrops and helped farm his landThey also paid many taxesMost manor villages were located along astream or a riverTwo of the three fields were cultivated,while the other was fallow to regain itsfertilitiy 11. Medieval Map 12. The Life of a PeasantSpent long hours in the fieldsMost serfs could not leave the landwithout the permission of the lord Could not hunt on the lords property or affordto raise their own animals, so they rarely atemeat Life expectancy was very short because ofdiet, warfare, disease, and starvation 13. NoblesThe upper class of the Middle ages did notlive in luxuryCastles were bases for the lord to enforceauthority and protect the countrysideCastles built on hillsMoats were built around Castles on flatland These protected it and drawbridges allowedaccess to castle over the flooded moats 14. Nobles cont.A keep was the main building of thecastle and was used as a storeroom,workshop, and lords living quartersMen acquired land through marriage 15. ChivalryChivalry: a code of conductDictated knights behavior toward othersChivalry comes from the French wordcheval, meaning horse, because knightswere mounted soldiersKnights were expected to be courageousin battle and fight fairlyAlso, be loyal, treat his conquered foesgallantly, and be courteous to women andthe less powerful 16. How do I become a Knight?Knights had to belong to a noble class andpass two stages of training Stage 1: age of seven when a boy would be aknights page, or attendant Stage 2: knights assistant, or squireHe would take care of the knights horse,armor, and weapons