View of the State of Europe During the Middle Ages

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Harper & brothers, 1848 - Europe - 568 pages
 

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Page 406 - Item, whereas the elections of knights of shires to come to the Parliaments of our Lord the King, in many counties of the realm of England, have now of late been made by very great, outrageous, and excessive number of people dwelling within the same counties of the realm of England, of the which most part was of people of small substance, and of no value...
Page 19 - Creasy to select for military description those few battles of which, in the words of Hnllam, ' a contrary event would have essentially varied the drama of the world in all its subsequent scenes.
Page 124 - ... sunk for several centuries after the dissolution of the Roman Empire into a condition of utter depravity ; where, if any vices could be selected as more eminently characteristic than others, they were falsehood, treachery, and ingratitude. In slowly purging off the lees of this extreme corruption, the feudal spirit exerted its ameliorating influence. Violation of faith stood first in the catalogue of crimes, most repugnant to the very essence of a feudal tenure, most severely and promptly avenged,...
Page 22 - Alexander, he seemed born for universal innovation: in a life restlessly active, we see him reforming the coinage, and establishing the legal divisions of money ; gathering about him the learned of every country ; founding schools and collecting libraries ; interfering, but with the tone of a king, in religious controversies...
Page 467 - We can hardly regret, in reflecting on the desolating violence which prevailed, that there should have been some green spots in the wilderness, where the feeble and the persecuted could find refuge. How must this right have enhanced the veneration for religious institutions ! How gladly must the victims of internal warfare have turned their eyes from the baronial castle, the dread and scourge of the neighbourhood, to those venerable walls, within which not even the clamour of arms could be heard,...
Page 82 - Serjeanty is where a man holds his lands or tenements of our sovereign lord the King by such services as he ought to do in his proper person to the King ; as to carry the banner of the King, or his lance, or to lead his army, or to be his marshal, or to carry his sword before him at his coronation, or to be his sewer at his coronation, or his carver, or his butler, or to be one of his chamberlains of the receipt of his Exchequer, or to do other like services, &c.
Page 471 - ... wholesomeness and comfort, as well as the luxury, of the table depended. Before the natural pastures were improved, and new kinds of fodder for cattle discovered, it was impossible to maintain the summer stock during the cold season. Hence a portion of it was regularly slaughtered and salted for winter provision. We may suppose that, when no alternative was offered but these salted meats, even the leanest venison was devoured with relish.
Page 471 - ... the peasantry. The devastation committed under the pretence of destroying wild animals, which had been already protected in their depredations, is noticed in serious authors, and has also been the topic of popular ballads. What effect this must have had on agriculture it is easy to conjecture. The levelling of forests, the draining of morasses, and the extirpation of mischievous animals which inhabit them, are the first objects of man's labour in reclaiming the earth to his use ; and these were...
Page 364 - From the time of William Rufus, there was no reign in which charters were not granted to different towns, of exemption from tolls on rivers and at markets, those lighter manacles of feudal tyranny ; or of commercial franchises ; or of immunity from the ordinary jurisdictions ; or, lastly, of internal self-regulation.
Page 471 - The French code was less severe, but even Henry IV. enacted the pain of death against the repeated offence of chasing deer in the royal forests. The privilege of hunting was reserved to the nobility till the reign of Louis IX., who extended it in some degree to persons of lower birth. This excessive passion for the sports of the field produced those evils which are apt to result from it ; a strenuous idleness, which disdained all useful occupations, and an oppressive spirit towards the peasantry....

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