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Unformatted text preview: he person could swallow and digest, he was pronounced innocent.w The feudal law, if it had place at all among the Anglo-Saxons, Military force. which is doubtful, was not certainly extended over all the landed property, and was not attended with those consequences of homage, reliefs,x wardship, marriage, and other burthens, which were inseparable from it in the kingdoms of the continent. As the Saxons expelled or almost entirely destroyed the ancient Britons, they planted themselves in this island on the same footing with their ancestors in Germany, and found no occasion for the feudal institutions,y which were calculated to maintain a kind of standing army, always in readiness to suppress any insurrection among the conquered people. The trouble and expence of defending the state in England lay equally upon all the land; and it was usual for every five hides to equip a man for the service. The trinoda necessitas, as it was called, or the burthen of military expeditions, of repairing highways, and of building and supporting bridges, was inseparable from landed property, even though it belonged to the church or monasteries, unless exempted by a particular charter.z The ceorles or husbandmen were provided with arms, and were obliged to take their turn in military duty.a There were computed to be 243,600 hides in England;b consequently the ordinary military force of the kingdom consisted of 48,720 men; though, no doubt, on extraordinary occasions, a greater number might be assembled. The king and nobility had some military tenants, who were called Sithcun-men.c And there were some lands annexed to the office of aldermen, and to other offices; but these probably were not of great extent, and were possessed only during pleasure, as in the commencement of the feudal law in other countries of Europe. The revenue of the king seems to have consisted chiefly in his Public revenue. demesnes, which were large; and in the tolls and imposts which he probably levied at discretion on the boroughs and sea-ports, that lay within his demesnes. He could not alienate any part of the crown lands, even to religious uses, without the consent of the states.d Danegelt was a land-tax of a shilling a hide, imposed by the states,e either for payment of the sums exacted by the Danes, or for putting the kingdom in a posture of defence against those invaders .f The Saxon pound, as likewise that which was coined for some centuries after the conquest, was near three times the weight of
Value of money. PLL v5 (generated January 22, 2010) 134 http://oll.libertyfund.org/title/695 Online Library of Liberty: The History of England, vol. 1 our present money: There were forty-eight shillings in the pound, and five pence in a shilling,g consequently a Saxon shilling was near a fifth heavier than ours, and a Saxon penny near three times as heavy.h As to the value of money in those times, compared to commodities, there are some, though not very certain, means of computation. A sheep by the laws of Athel...
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This note was uploaded on 02/12/2011 for the course CHIN 101 taught by Professor Dr.yu during the Spring '08 term at University Of Southern Mississippi .
- Spring '08