First Essay

4655 WordsNov 29, 201019 Pages
The Norman Conquest brought about very important changes in the lives of Anglo-Saxons. We have seen what little power the King Harold had over the great lords. The Anglo-Saxon earls didn’t even join their king at Hastings. After the Conquest the royal power in England strengthened greatly. The conquerors turned into serfs many Anglo-Saxon peasants who had been free before. They brought with them their language, laws and customs. Under their rule the English language changed greatly. Now we shall learn more about the way of life of the Normans and the changes they brought to England. The Battle of Hastings which took place on October 14, 1066 is considered to the decisive battle resulting in the Norman conquest of England. The battle took place at Senlac Hill, about ten kms from Hastings. THE STRENGHTENING OF THE ROYAL POWER The Conqueror claimed that the forest lands which made up 1/3 of the country belonged to him, too. Large forests were turned into reserves for the royal hunting. Special Forest Laws about hunting were issued. Anyone who dared to hunt in the royal forest without the king’s permission was threatened with the severe punishment. Thus the King of England became the richest feudal lord of all. The royal domain consisted of 1420 estates. The more powerful barons were granted from 100 to 400 estates and some of them still more. The monasteries were granted 1700 estates. These were the chief owners of the English lands. Many Normans were given only 2 or 3 estates, some even 1. But both great and small landowners held their lands from the king. The English lands that were given to the Church were also held from the king by bishops and abbots. William the Conqueror made not only the great landowners, to whom he granted land, but also their vassals swear their allegiance to him directly. In 1086 a great gathering of knights in Salisbury, William

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