The Aftereffects of the Hundred Years' War The Hundred Years' War aided in the demise of feudalism by shifting authority away from feudal lords and toward kings and common people. During the conflict, all sides' monarchs collected taxes and formed vast professional armies. They used these funds to purchase land, which they gave to men-at-arms and knights for service. This replaced the old system where one individual held all the power with a government that was accountable to its citizens.
Feudalism is the ancient Germanic system of military obligation, social status, and labor service called "feu" that existed in Europe after the collapse of the Roman Empire. It developed among the Saxon tribes who invaded what is now Germany and Denmark; they established a tribal hierarchy based on family ties rather than birthright or merit. At the top were the king and the great nobles, while below them lived the lesser nobles and then the serfs or slaves.
In the 11th century, France and England began the process of forming modern states by abolishing the last remnants of feudalism in their countries. By the end of the 12th century, all of Europe had abandoned the feudal system in some form or another.
The fall of the feudal system was aided by political developments in England, the bubonic plague, and the Hundred Years' War. Political developments included the establishment of parliament as a body with authority over the king, which replaced the old council for government. The plague killed off many people who would have contributed to the economy had they survived. The war between France and England lasted from 1337 to 1453. It was fought over control of France and the outcome of the conflict affected everyone living there.
Feudalism ended in Europe after the Black Death ravaged countries including France, Germany, and Italy. The plague killed an estimated 50% of the population from 1348 to 1605. This number includes any men aged 20 or older because mortality rates were high for children and old people too. It is estimated that up to half of all males born during this time died before reaching adulthood. This means that the majority of men in some counties were never married or left marriage early - leading to inheritance disputes among their relatives.
France passed laws in 1532 and 1556 prohibiting anyone from holding more than one job to try and prevent people dying while still earning a salary. These laws didn't stop people from getting sick though, so they must have already been ill when they went back to work.
How It Aided in the Abolition of Feudalism Following the Hundred Years' War, the Parliament grew in prominence, while the king's position began to dwindle. People were more likely to favor Parliament because they wanted everyone to be equal and have their own rights. Before this war started there was no such thing as democracy because only a few people had all the power. Now that war has ended with people winning many things are different now. For example, people can vote for who they want to represent them in Parliament instead of being forced to choose between the King and Pope.
During this time period, new ideas about government and civil rights were starting to develop. People started thinking about what kind of government would work best for England. They also started asking themselves how they could change laws and what role Parliament should play in making those changes happen. All of these questions led up to the English Civil War which will be discussed later in class.
The Black Death destroyed the manorial system, and the church lost reputation and authority as a result. The medieval social system began to disintegrate. For the next 100 years, fighting forced people to shift their loyalty from feudal lords to the monarch and country; nationalism superseded medieval feudalism.
The breakup of the manorial system left land ownership in the hands of relatively few individuals. This increased economic inequality between rich and poor, which was one factor that led up to the Renaissance and Reformation.
Feudalism provided a way for peasants to acquire land and escape serfdom, but it could also be a means for powerful nobles or priests to gain wealth and influence over others. In fact, many noble families built their reputations by killing their rivals in war or other ways and seizing their lands. Also, some priests gained power by becoming feudal lords after marrying into wealthy families. They used their influence with the king to get funds to build churches and monasteries, which were important in establishing themselves as leaders within society.
During the 11th century, civil wars broke out between different factions in Europe. Many of these conflicts were motivated by greed - some rulers tried to seize power from others. Others wanted to purge Christianity of corruption by destroying the Catholic Church and replacing it with an orthodox version. Still others wanted to expand their territories by waging war against other countries.
Feudalism is the name given to the system of administration brought to England by William I following his victory over Harold at the Battle of Hastings. Feudalism became a way of life in Medieval England and lasted for centuries. He sought a strategy to keep control of England so that the people would remain faithful. They would have no choice but to obey their lord because they needed him to protect them against other nations with stronger armies.
Feudalism was not new at the time of its introduction into England. It had been used by various monarchs before William to maintain power. But he made it official law, which changed everything. Under feudal law, land was owned by someone else—in this case, the king—and leased out for a term of years. When the lease expired, the land returned to the king's control, who could then give it away or lose interest in it. Leases could be extended as long as necessary to ensure the king's security.
A tenant farmer working the land could grow crops or raise livestock as income. The more land you had, the larger your fee. In exchange for protection from outside attack, tenants were expected to fight on the king's behalf when called upon. If they refused, they could be punished with fines or forced labor.
The idea was that everyone involved knew they needed the king to stay strong and loyal.