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Government Changed Roman Empire The Romans controlled from a central authority - the emperor. Middle Ages Authority was decentralized to the local lords.

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Presentation on theme: "Government Changed Roman Empire The Romans controlled from a central authority - the emperor. Middle Ages Authority was decentralized to the local lords."— Presentation transcript:

1 Government Changed Roman Empire The Romans controlled from a central authority - the emperor. Middle Ages Authority was decentralized to the local lords Each lord controlled land called fiefdoms Lords protected and maintained justice in their fiefdoms

2 Feudalism Feudalism is the system of obligations that bound lords and their subjects in Europe during much of the Middle Ages. -In theory, the king owned the land and gave it to his generals in return for their loyalty and military services. (Lords) -The nobles in turn gave part of the land to their best soldiers (knights) - All these landowners allowed peasants, including serfs, to farm and live on in return for a portion of their produce. -Under feudalism, people were born with a permanent position in society

3 What do you think this is? Is this what started it all?

4 “This is one of the most important inventions in World History! Why do you think that is?”

5 The Stirrup changed warfare A mounted horseman, firmly planted in the saddle, could use weapons from his high position on horseback. – such as the lance, sword, or mace The army that had the most horsemen on the battlefield was superior.

6 So now the question becomes: How do I get more horsemen into my army?

7 Let’s Make a Deal! The Lord will give what ever the warrior needs in return for loyal support and military expertise. basic needs (food and shelter) enough help to maintain their fighting equipment and skills. At the heart of this deal is land for loyalty! This relationship between the Lord and the Vassal is called Feudalism

8 When a Lord and a Vassal (usually a Knight) came into this agreement, a contract was signed. An agreement between two or more parties for the doing or not doing of something specific. An agreement enforceable by law

9 “Oath of Fidelity” Thus shall one take the oath of fidelity: By the Lord before whom this sanctuary is holy, I will to be true and faithful, and love all which he loves and shun all which he shuns, according to the laws of God and the order of the world. Nor will I ever with will or action, through word or deed, do anything which is unpleasing to him, on condition that he will hold to me as I shall deserve it, and that he will perform everything as it was in our agreement when I submitted myself to him and chose his will. 1) What role does religion play in this feudal contract? 2) What does the vassal pledge to the lord? 3) What does the lord pledge to the vassal? 4) How is this similar and different from contracts created today?

10 Feudal Contracts 1) Homages Paid by the Counts of Champagne 2) Blanche, countess palatine of Troyes 3) Capitulary Concerning Freemen and Vassals, 816 4) John of Toul's Homage(respect & honor) to the Count of Champagne What are the duties of the vassal in each of the contracts? Who did the contracts benefit? Who appears to be left out?

11 So what is Feudalism? 1.The political, legal and social system 2.evolved in W Europe in the ’s AD 3.Lords protected and maintained their Vassals, 4.usually through the granting of fiefs (land) 5.Vassals were required to serve under them in war 6.Vassals were served by Serfs who did the daily work.

12 So what makes up feudalism? Lord, Vassal, Fief, Chivalry: these four basic components are what held feudalism together in the Middle Ages.

13 Lord – Vassal: Relationship between freemen where the Lord (Superior) receives loyalty and services from his Vassal(s) in exchange for land (fief, fee, fealty).

14 Fief, Fee, Fealty land given by the lord to a vassal in exchange for loyalty and services, most often Military service.

15 Chivalry: The code of honor, ethics, and conduct that held it all together. Without this code that protected the practices of the noblemen, the system would not be able to function; chaos would ensue.

16 Some other key concepts Primogeniture: the first born male inherits the whole fief from his father. He must swear an oath of loyalty to the lord. The fief stays intact. Continuity for the serfs. But the little brothers get ZIP. Marriage: Noble marriages were arranged by the family for political and economic purposes. The wife enters the marriage with a dowry (wealth of some type).


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