answersLogoWhite

0

What best describes feudal society?

Updated: 8/19/2023
User Avatar

Wiki User

โˆ™ 9y ago

Best Answer
AnswerIt was a very structured society. The nobility had privileges that the lower classes didn't have and the peasant class was required to work for the nobility as tenet farmers. The houses they lived in were made of wattle and daub, with dirt floors, no heat except for a fireplace, no furniture, and it was cold in the winter. No running water was provided in any house or manor. Most places were cold and drafty in the winter months. The street or roads were muddy, dirty, and full of animal feces. People did not take baths and generally threw the garbage into the rivers and streets. Food was bad good because there was no means to preserve it and it was generally overcooked. The Church ran the society by strict terms and the great fear was that a person who didn't follow the teachings of the church would be excommunicated. It was taught that man was born in sin and the only way to get into heaven was the church. Everyone was expected to attend Mass each day and to say prayers several times a day. There was no science and people couldn't read or write. This was a 1000 years of a society where there was king who had everything and then there was everyone else. There were no "rights" or say in how things were done or laws made. AnswerMost people in the middle ages, in most countries, were serfs, who worked on farms or on other jobs such as forestry or mining. They were of the lowest class, but they did have rights in most of Europe for most of the middle ages. They did not have the right to leave the land they worked on, but they did have the right to stay there, and they could not be evicted without cause. In many places, if they wanted to be free, and ran away, they were free after a year, but they gave up the security of manorial life. The early reeves were responsible for organizing the serfs and provided focus of communication between the feudal lord and the serf, but in many places the reeve was elected by the serfs.

The serfs, as all medieval people, were very religious and believed that a clean body was an indicator of a healthy soul, so they bathed regularly and took care of themselves. There were bathing facilities in most towns and larger villages. If there was none available, they bathed in whatever water they could find, including rivers in the winter.

Their houses were indeed either wattle and daub or stone chinked with daub. But they did not have fireplaces because they were only invented in the 12th century and were only available to the rich (ever wonder why castles have no chimneys?). Rich people had braziers to build fires on. Cooking was done outside in warm weather. That dirt floor was an handy place for a fire in cold weather. The smoke rose up to a hole in the roof, or went out holes under the roof peaks. There were few windows, and most had no glass. The furniture was rude and simple, and people slept on straw covered with cloth.

Health was always an issue, and they believed that many diseases came from exposure to tainted air. Tainted air smelled bad, so they tried to do what they could to avoid anything that smelled foul. If they were really worried about an epidemic, they used flowers and such to ward off disease.

The Church was important, and often at conflict with people who ruled nations over matters of policy. The beliefs of serfs were not particularly important, so the serfs were not all that worried about excommunication. The kings, on the other had, worried a lot because excommunication released anyone who had sworn an oath to them from that oath. This could weaken their political position enormously, and so it was an issue. As far as I know, serfs were not required to attend church, though most did. Bear in mind that not everyone in Europe was Catholic, or orthodox, or even Christian. There were crusades against heretics at some points, but not usually. This was a very important issue, particularly in Constantinople, where Byzantine Emperors were often unpopular because of unorthodox religious beliefs. There were Jews, Muslims, and pagans in medieval Europe, and though they were suppressed in some times and places, they were welcomed into others and given protection. The original function of the ghetto was to provide Jews with walls behind which they could defend themselves from anyone who would do them harm.

The feudal system was built to compensate for weak central governments, such as existed in large medieval countries. The countries with this system included France and the Holy Roman Empire. There were wars between countries, but individual lords often had their own armies, particularly dukes and marquesses, whose titles indicate this. These people feuded with each other, so there were many wars. The code of chivalry was a nice concept, but in battle, it was not often practiced, and the wars could be particularly ugly.

There are some misconceptions about the Middle Ages. One is that the Church opposed science, which is not true of the Middle Ages; this happened in the Renaissance, under the pressure of the Reformation and wide scale publishing of books from printing presses. Another is that everyone in the Middle Ages was illiterate, which is not true; today there are over seventy primary secondary schools still operating that were opened in the Middle Ages, and the first primary school system was opened in the Byzantine Empire in 425 AD, with the goal of making every soldier literate. Nor was the Church the only source of education; the oldest state operated school still operating was founded in 700 AD in what is now Yorkshire. Another idea is that kings ruled everything, which is not true; there were a lot of republican governments, both in and out of kingdoms and empires, Venice being an example that was republican from its beginning in the eighth century, governed by people who were, by the standards of the time, middle class. People believe that there was no middle class, which is not true, there were always merchants, and there were always stewards, lawyers, physicians, and people of a long list of other professions. Another idea is that women were chattel, which is not true; women had the disadvantage of being last in line to inherit, and in some countries could not be monarchs, but the list of important independent women is very long, including Queen Margaret I of Denmark, Eleanor of Aquitaine, and a young peasant woman named Jean, who became the leader of the whole French army at the age of 17.

The more I learn about the Middle Ages, the more I get surprises. I would highly recommend that people who want to know the truth about the period do some honest research on the subject and not believe the first things they read. Please see the links below.

User Avatar

Wiki User

โˆ™ 13y ago
This answer is:
User Avatar
More answers
User Avatar

Wiki User

โˆ™ 10y ago
  • The English feudal system began in 1066
  • Serfs were slaves
  • Peasants were tenate farmers and paid taxes.
  • 90% of the people couldn't read or write
  • The Catholic church was the only religion in Europe
  • The Catholic church controlled the kings
  • "Countries" were a patchwork of holdings by strong men.
  • 410 AD brought about the feudal system in Europe with the fall of Rome
  • Knights were nobles and the cost of armour was the price of a 5 bedroom house today. Knights weren't allowed to wear rings.

it is an old system they used a long time ago
This answer is:
User Avatar

User Avatar

Wiki User

โˆ™ 9y ago

Serfs gave crops to Lords and Lords controlled serfs' lives.

This answer is:
User Avatar
User Avatar

Anonymous

Lvl 1
โˆ™ 3y ago
Its correct

User Avatar

Wiki User

โˆ™ 12y ago

the lords own land, but owe loyalty and military to the government.

This answer is:
User Avatar

User Avatar

Atticus Hiltbrunner

Lvl 5
โˆ™ 2y ago

Serfs had to pay lords with crops. -> apex

This answer is:
User Avatar

Add your answer:

Earn +20 pts
Q: What best describes feudal society?
Write your answer...
Submit
Still have questions?
magnify glass
imp