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Feudalism in England “ A Little Different than the Others” Lasting impacts on the United States. Why Different? It started with William the Conqueror (ruled from 1066-1087). He gave his followers only land scattered throughout England. Made them swear loyalty only to him.

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feudalism in england a little different than the others lasting impacts on the united states

Feudalism in England“A Little Different than the Others”Lasting impacts on the United States

why different it started with william the conqueror ruled from 1066 1087
Why Different?It started with William the Conqueror (ruled from 1066-1087)

He gave his followers only land scattered throughout England.

Made them swear loyalty only to him.

This kept the lords separated and all lords were vassals of the king!

a new justice system emerges
A New Justice System Emerges
  • Henry I (ruled from 1100-1135)
  • Set up the “King’s Court” System
  • Judges would travel throughout England on a set “circuit” and try cases in the king’s royal courts, rather than in feudal courts
  • This took influence away from feudal courts and made the judges’ rulings more consistent.

Later, in the 1200’s, a 12-memberjury was introduced.

Trial by jury replaced old feudal procedures like trial by ordeal and trial by battle.

king john and magna carta
King John and Magna Carta
  • King John signed the Magna Carta in June 1215
  • The Magna Cartaput limits on the power of kings and guaranteed rights to the nobles.
  • The Magna Carta greatly influenced the framers of the U.S. constitution!
formation of parliament
Formation of Parliament
  • During the 1260’s members of the “middle class” (lawyers and knights) were invited to join nobles and clergy (House of Lords) in the “Great Council” to advise the king.
  • This group later became known as Parliament

House of Commons, in Parliament

Parliament, however, did NOT have the right to make laws.

They were only allowed to vote on the king’s proposals!

the formation of common law
The Formation of Common Law
  • King Edward (ruled from 1284-1327) established the common law system
  • How does Common Law work?
  • Each time a judge rules, that decision forms the basis for all future court cases like it.
  • If a current case has never been tried before, the ruling judge has the right and the duty to create a legal precedent by ruling on that case.
  • So, common law is constantly evolving.
  • It is NOT an unbending Code of Laws.
  • The U.S. legal system is based on common law.