How much did serf peasants in the middle ages pay to keep their house?
okay, so im doing a project for class, and i want to know what kind of currency that the people used in the middle ages. (1000-1458) i would also like to know how often that serfs paid the lords to keep their land, and how much?
- gaylene BLv 61 decade agoFavorite Answer
A percentage of the harvest went to the lord of the manor (the land's lord, or landlord) the amount varied, but it was between 10% - 25% - an additional 10% went to the local church as a tithe. When the holder of the land (the male head of the peasant household) died, the person who "inherited" the right to work the land (usually the eldest son) had to pay the landlord a "heriot" which in 1345 was around 1 shilling, and the best animal on the farm.
In addition to paying the percentage for the use of the land, the peasant also had to provide days of service to the lord, to bring in the lord's harvest and plow and plant the lord's land in the spring. The landlord was obliged to provide food and drink on these days. That consisted of a loaf of bread and a gallon of ale for each worker - or the worker could be offered the cash equivalent, 2 pence. (1 pence for the loaf, 1 pence for the ale), but it was the landlord's choice.
The women of the parish earned actual cash - by raising and selling birds or eggs and making home brewed ale and selling it. (a fee was paid for the right to sell ale, and if regulations about ale were broken, the woman's husband would be fined)
I found this information about the actual cost of the heriot when I was in college, I wish I could find the book again. Five years later (after the black death) the heriot was being waived and the landlord was accepting just an egg as his payments, and he still wasn't finding any takers. His peasants were leaving the land because they were being offered cash payments for working elsewhere.Source(s): BA in History
- tuffyLv 71 decade ago
If they were serfs they worked for the Manse, that is the person that owned the land. Their homes were owned by the Manor as well. Money was seldom used. Their shelters were usually shared with animals. The exchange for goods was usually bartering, that is, they would perform a task for someone and get paid by the person they performed the task for with a service or another good. Some had small gardens in order to survive, but often had to turn over a certain portion of their crops to the Manor as a form of tax. Serfs were in many instances slaves having nothing of real value that they could exchange for money. Wars were often waged between manors and as individuals began to acquire more and more manors they began to let others govern their manors. Out of this persons began to become specialists in certain tasks, such as blacksmiths, tanners,wheelrights, carpenters etc. Then these specialists began to receive pay for their efforts, but they were no longer serfs.
- Anonymous4 years ago
Not sure about the first one, but... 2.) Charlemagne built some of the first universities of the middle ages...I think, but there were Greek academies long before Charlemagne's grandmother was coming of age. 3.) I guess this refers to monasteries, but I could be wrong. 4.) The Roman empire never really "fell" it sort of bled into the dark ages, becoming more and more German and less Roman. I would say that this transition started in the third century A.D. There was even a Roman emperor in 235 who barley spoke Latin. The decline in learning was probably because the barbarian cultures that migrated into the dying Roman empire did not value literature and all that good stuff as much as the Romans. 5.) This is certainly not the best of answers, but I would say that the strength of the lower orders (vassals) made it hard for a king to exercise complete and absolute control over every square inch of his domain, thus keeping the distinct social hierarchy of feudal Europe.
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- 1 decade ago
Serfs didn't really pay the lords for their land and house. They were usually bound to the land they were born on, so they were usually forced to stay on the land. In exchange for the land and house, serfs paid their lords in produce and labor. However, the land and house weren't the serfs' property in our definition of property today; instead, they belonged more to the lord.
People mostly used bartering on manors and in villages, but in larger towns and cities people sometimes used currency. It was usually gold or silver coins, and the value of each coin was usually based on its weight.
- 1 decade ago
Gaylene's totally right. But if you're interested in the earlier part of your period then just ask. I did my dissertation on Domesday England's (c.11) peasantry.
DESource(s): BA History
- Experto CredoLv 71 decade ago
It was more of an exchange program; they worked the land and part of the harvest went to the land owner as 'payment'
- Anonymous1 decade ago
serfs paid a portion of whatever they grew or otherwise produced, like beef or mutton
- 5 years ago
waaaaaaaaay tooooooooo much
- 1 decade ago
4 GOLDEN COINS FROM THE VILLAGE OF NEJEROO IT WAS EASY TO OBTAIN FOR THEM BECAUSE THE RACHLOE CREETONS INFECTED THE RICH VILLAGE INCLUDING PRINCE OF AWQOFILLIA