The great majority of Henry's subjects had to deal with basic economic hardships, which were the royal administration had difficulty addressing. There were major economic troubles early in Henry's reign, such as an increase in rural unemployment, and the raising of rents and fines for tenant farmers, who increasingly formed the bulk of the population. Along with rising prices, due to a general inflation which few if any of Henry's financial ministers comprehended, there was also a rising population, which compounded the difficulties. While Thomas Wolsey was chancellor, Henry's government was determined to help the poor, passing legislation which forbade enclosure, the practice by which local lords closed off with fences lands which had customarily been used as common farming spaces for poor folks. This policy angered the landed gentry in the countryside, and, what is more, was not very effective. With onsets of plague and
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Henry, local lords, basic economic hardships, common farming spaces, small western territory, real administrative unity