Today’s Target I can… • Explain why feudalism began in Europe. • Identify characteristics of feudalism and describe what it looked like.
Feudalism Develops Because: • Rome collapses and suddenly people are on their own – who will protect them?? • Very unstable world: Germanic tribes invading, Vikings start attacking. • Solution: people seek out powerful lords who could protect them…for a price
Solution: Feudalism! • Feudalism: system where rich, powerful lords offer protection to people in return for service • Lords run their own estates with their own rules • People pay taxes to the lords for protection • Lords are responsible for protecting people from invaders
What is Feudalism? • Feudalism is a form of government ran by individual lords who: • Managed their own estates • Enforced their own laws • Made their own money • Collected taxes and tolls • Demanded military service from vassals (knights, peasants, serfs). • Feudalism was built on a relationship of obligation and mutual service between vassals and lords. Stocks
Social Hierarchy of the Middle Ages Rulers/Nobility Obligations of military service and custom Hierarchy Obligations of land and labor
Kings/Clergy • Kings often figureheads – not much real power • Clergy = Church • Roman Catholic Church typically has more power than the kings! (WHY??) • More organized • Been around longer • People have more faith in the Church than their rulers
Lords & Knights • Lords more powerful than kings (usually) • Gave land to his vassals (knights) • In return, knights had to serve the lord – money, or battle service
Serfs/Peasants • Majority of people in the Middle Ages • Few rights – bound to lord for life! • Needed permission to marry, travel, etc • Simple housing with small farming space • Worked first for lord (for their protection), then for themselves
A Vassal's Obligations • Attend the lord at his court • Help administer justice • Contribute money if needed • Go to battle with his men • He must feed and house the lord and his company when they visited • I DO SOLEMNLY SWEAR (OR AFFIRM) THAT I WILL SUPPORT AND DEFEND THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES AGAINST ALL ENEMIES, FOREIGN AND DOMESTIC; THAT I WILL BEAR TRUE FAITH AND ALLEGIANCE TO THE SAME; AND THAT I WILL OBEY THE ORDERS OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES AND THE ORDERS OF THE OFFICERS APPOINTED OVER ME, ACCORDING TO REGULATIONS AND THE UNIFORM CODE OF MILITARY JUSTICE. SO HELP ME GOD. A U.S. Soldier's Obligations
Comparing Vassals • The Armored Knight • The Modern American Soldier
The Manor • Smallest unit of feudal government • Economic and social units of life in the early Middle Ages • Manors usually had four parts: -Farm land -Meadow land -Waste land -The village
Key to Feudalism • Built on relationship of service and obligation between lords, vassals, and peasants • Everyone has a place in society, and must uphold their place • Result: many small kingdoms versus one large empire • Thinking questions: • When does this work well? • What problems does it create?