Mounted soldiers began to secure a system of hereditary rule over their allocated land and their power over the territory came to encompass the social, political, judicial, and economic spheres.
Not all historians like the term. They regard it as inadequate in describing an extraordinarily complex situation. However, the alternative is to get bogged down in detailed descriptions and qualifications which risk overwhelming all but specialist medievalists.
As a shorthand, feudalism will do as well as any other. In brief, a fief was a piece of property which a person was given on condition that he and occasionally she performed certain services to the one who gave it. A person who received a fief was a vassal of the one who had given him the fief, who was his lord.
In the agrarian society of medieval Europe, a fief was usually a specified parcel of land.
However, Western Europe was threatened by many different groups, such as the Vikings, the Muslims, and the Magyars. Without much protection for property and population, Europe had to delve deeper into feudalism. Start studying Feudalism in Western Europe. Learn vocabulary, terms, and more with flashcards, games, and other study tools. Although Japan and Europe did not have any direct contact with one another during the medieval and early modern periods, they independently developed very similar class systems, known as feudalism. Feudalism was more than gallant knights and heroic samurai, it was a way of life of extreme inequality.
The services the vassal owed the lord commonly entailed military service for a set amount of time each year 40 days was normal. He also had a duty to provide his lord with advice.
This last was very important for what it led on to see below, Representative Government. All these promises and counter-promises were accompanied by solemn oaths, so that the whole was underpinned by strong religious sanctions — which, in a deeply religious agecounted for a great deal.
Harold swearing oath on holy relics to William, Duke of Normandy. A fief-holder was able to hive off part of his fief to form a smaller fief for a vassal of his own in exchange for the traditional obligations, of course.
In this way, most fief-holders were both lords and vassals; and kingdoms came to resemble, from top to bottom, pyramids of greater and lesser fiefs. In feudal society everyone was supposed to have a lord — except the king at the top, who had no lord at least, not on Earth: The different ranks of fief-holders formed the aristocracy of medieval European society.
Until the 9th or 10th centuries, this fief-holding was in theory for one lifetime only. It gradually became hereditary in practice, and from about was hereditary in law as well: Privatized power The main implication for all this was that power was widely distributed.
A king was regarded as owning all the land of his kingdom, and to command its entire military and economic resources. However, he owned his land, and exercised his authority, through a large number of vassals.
Military power For military purposes, the mechanism by which a feudal king could mobilize the military resources of his realm was to order his direct vassals, the magnates, to provide him with soldiers.Spread.
Feudalism spread from France to Spain, Italy, and later Germany and Eastern Europe.
In England the Frankish form was imposed by William I (William the Conqueror) after , although most of the elements of feudalism were already present.
In these ways, while elements of feudalism continued in many parts of western Europe right up to the 18th and 19th centuries, the feudal system as a whole, with its hierarchy of fiefs and lords and vassals, had died out by the end of the 16th century.
Feudalism, also called feudal system or feudality, French féodalité, historiographic construct designating the social, economic, and political conditions in western Europe during the early Middle Ages, the long stretch of time between the 5th and 12th centuries.
Although Japan and Europe did not have any direct contact with one another during the medieval and early modern periods, they independently developed very similar class systems, known as feudalism.
Feudalism was more than gallant knights and heroic samurai, it was a way of life of extreme inequality. Although Japan and Europe did not have any direct contact with one another during the medieval and early modern periods, they independently developed very similar class systems, known as feudalism.
Feudalism was more than gallant knights and heroic samurai, it was a way of life of extreme inequality. Feudalism itself decayed and effectively disappeared in most of Western Europe by about , partly since the military power of kings shifted from armies consisting of the nobility to professional fighters (effectively reducing the nobility's power), but also.