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ity-and said to himself several would not know what to do with times—“ It will be a most excel- more." lent bargain.” The only thought “Do you think he will be perthat troubled him was, “What will fectly satisfied when he finds out my partner say?. Will he think that we only pay him half of its that it is quite fair q”
value. But even supposing he On his arrival at the counting- ) were satisfied, that does not alter house, he bid his partner “Good the question. So far as we are morning"-and said to him, “Well, concerned, we should be taking a Sandford, I have seen old Richard- dishonest advantage, to bind him son about that bit of land, and he to such terms." is very willing to let us have it. “Why?” He says it has never been anything “ Because it is dishonest to but a plague to him, and he shall deprive any man of that which be very glad to be rid of it. 'Tis belongs to him. No matter how a very fortunate thing I thought you do it. No matter if the man of riding over this morning, for I knows nothing about it. This is understand that Mr. Morton has what I think: It is not an honest been thinking of getting it from way of business to take advantage him, and sinking a mine there; of another man's ignorance." but I was first, and I have inade “Well, I don't know how it is," every arrangement. We are to said Mr. Wilson, who was losing ha it for fifty pounds å-year. his temper;, “but is impossible It will be a capital speculation.” to do anything to please you. If
“The man must be quite igno- you might have your way in everyrant of the value of his own land thing, our business would soon to agree to such terms,” said Mr. come to nothing." Sandford. “Did you tell him the “Nay,” said Mr. Sandford, laughpurpose for which it was wanted?” ing, "I am not afraid of that.
“Oh, yes ; of course I told him You know that I believe no one we thought there might be coal. I loses in the long-run by plain and did not see why I should enter into straightforward dealing: particulars. He knows nothing “Well, if you can make out that about mining, and he will, upon it will be for our interest to pay these terms, make a deal more by one hundred instead of fifty pounds his land than he has ever done a-year for the right of mining under yet."
that field, well and good, but I con“Perhaps so, but not so much fess I cannot. I must say, too, as he ought to make by it. If he Sandford, it will be very absurd of does not know its value, we do ; you to make any alterations in the and I cannot consent to profit by terms. what would be an imposition upon “But, there !” said Mr. Wilson, him."
greatly irritated, “it is no use “Nonsense ; you are so over- arguing with you; I will have noparticular. No one but yourself thing more to do with the affair; would think of making the slightest manage it as you like.” So saying, objection to a thing so much to he sat down to his desk and wrote your advantage. And then again, letters with great rapidity. the man is perfectly satisfied. He (Continued at page 337.)
THE NORMAN KINGS.
cluster of cottages, some new,
some old, with mud and clay walls, THE FEUDAL SYSTEM.
and thatch. Here lived in misery P. Do you remember the last some of the Saxon Thanes and chapt r?
Churls, with the peasants and W. The history of the con slaves who tilled the ground. quest, papa ? Yes, that was a sad These were now the poor of the chapter.
land; they were called SERFS. P. And here comes another sad Thus, in En and, there were chapter.
now two very distinct classes of Suppose, then, that ten years had people—the conquerors and the passed away since William came, conquered—the rich and the poor. and that you were looking on our They knew or cared very little for beautiful island from one of those each other, for they spoke differmountain-tops.
ent languages. The conquerors, First, ---You would have noticed reigning in their wealth and the dwelling-places of the Norman power, spoke only French; while conquerors. They had come to the conquered—the poor serfs, sat England to be rich, and now they at their firesides and talked over were enjoying themselves. They their troubles in their ancient lanhad found out the best places—and guage-Sacon. many an old abbey and monastery, You would soon have known each which had been plundered of its class ; for if you had observed a gold, was now the abode of the man with a fine dress, with a coat men of Normandy. All the large of mail, helmet, and sword, or with palaces and mansions, too, they the dress of a priest, no matter seized. But you would have which, you would have known by noticed most the castles, which his dark brownish complexion, his seemed to be rising up in all parts. black hair, which was clipped and There were not only the old castles, short ; by the moustache on his but new ones built of stone, with upper lip, and by his dark black strong towers, and thick walls, sur eyes - by all these things—without rounded by a broad ditch called a hearing him speak - you would moat. Over this moat was a bridge have known him to be a NORMAN, leading to the castle gate, which and that he was either a Baron or was drawn up at night, so that
a Monk. one could enter, and was But, by far the greater number called a Draw-bridge. How you of people were the natives. You would have wondered at these would soon have distinguished castles--the great number of them them. If you had seen a man -castles at the north and south, with light and long brown hair, castles at the east and west florid face, and blue eyes, dressed castles in all parts-everywhere. in a tunic-a loose robe which In these castles lived in ease and fitted tight round his neck, and safety the Norman knights, who hung down to his knees, just were now the rich people of the like the smock frocks we land ; they were called BARONS. in the country now-you would
Secondly,--Around the castle have known that he was one of you would have seen a thick the Saxons.
These were nearly all the people; , who chose to remain had a “lot” of but you might have noticed-just ground for his share. Thus they here and there-a few who did not lived, under what they called the belong to either class. You would allodial system. Each man dwelt hear a noise, and would meet a in his cottage on his farm ; his few fierce men who had been plot of ground was his own; nosailors, but now were dressed in body could venture to interfere gay clothes of scarlet, purple, and with his rights. He was an indefine linen; a few had even mantles pendent land-owner, and free. of velvet, which they had brought
This was the state of many in their ships from Italy and Spain. the nations of Europe in the early These were some of the old enemies times of the Saxons.
But by -the Danes.
degrees their state changed. Many Or, you might have seen some of the fighting men who lived in old grey beards-silent, thinking, their farms would sometimes think long-bearded men who had lived to themselves, “This is a tame in these parts before. They had way of living ; we would like to be been driven away from England stirring and conquering again; we by Canute, but now had returned would like to gain gold by fighting, by the permission of William. not by such slow, heavy work as These men, caring for none of the this. We will beat our spades others, but living by themselves-- into swords again, for we want to they were the old Jews.
be great men, and gain glory. We All these people and castles you will not live here any longer.” So might have seen from the moun- great numbers of them would often tain-top, and much more. Then, quit their allotments for a time, and perhaps, you would have asked, would follow a new leader to rich
What is the reason for so much and thickly peopled lands. change? Why are there so many When they reached the rich and castles in the different parts ?” crowded cities of Italy, and the
I will tell you. William had southern countries of Europe—they come from a strange country, and fought, and conquered, and made so had brought with him a new plan many prisoners, that, in order to of government. We will look back keep them safe they were obliged to a little.
separate into small parties—each Do you remember when I de- party living with their leader. scribed to you our German an- The prisoners were more numerous cestors ?
than themselves. Ion. You mean, papa, those L. What troublesome work that wild characters who lived in the must have been! cold northern countries? I re- P. Yes. The barbarians now member them well. You told us were so busy that they could seldom about their holding “a Comi- meet together to hold “Comitatus.” tatus.”
Their parties were afraid to go P. I told you how the barbarous away and leave their charge. So, tribes would meet in the Comitatus; as they, the common men, were and some of them would agree to not able to attend to business start on an expedition, to conquer | themselves, they were obliged to a new country." I said, that if they trust very much to their leaders, conquered the country, every man who met together for them, and
thus gained more power and im- | be my servant, and come and fight portance.
for me, whenever I want it. These leaders, or chiefs, gained Ion. Ah!-just as old Edwards power in another way. When lives in your cottage, papa; still, it they reached the cities which had is not his own, we let it to him. belonged to the Romans, they saw P. Right. And it was so in this that the fighting men were paid new plan of dividing the countryfor fighting with money instead of no man felt that the ground he land. So these chiefs learned | lived on was his own, as it was on something, and when they held a the allodial system. Comitatus to start a new expedi- When dividing the country, the tion, they would sometimes make chief would let a large piece of a different sort of agreement. The land and a castle to some of the chief who wished to go, instead of great warriors on these terms. saying, “All of you who come with They would then let out smaller me and conquer, shall have a part parts of it to the captains under of the land;" would say, “I will pay them. These captains-each having each man so much money to be my a good sized piece-would divide servant for so many months, just some of their land into smaller as the Romans do.' The German plots and strips, and would let it word for “pay” or “wages” is sold, to the common soldiers on the same and in time, these men who re- terms; and then again, if a soldier ceived their pay, or sold, for fight- had a larger piece than he wanted, ing, were called “soldiers.” he would let a part to one of the
Ion. But were not the Roman poor conquered people, who was to warriors calied soldiers, papa ? be his servant, and perform all the
P. No. "Sold” is a German hard and dirty work for him. word. The Roman fighting men According to this plan, each man were called milites.
received the piece of land not as his W. Ah, we called soldiers o.vn, but “in feud”—that means "military men” now, so we may in trust—almost in the same way as give a soldier a German or men keep their houses now on lease. Roman name.
Formerly each man's piece of P. Now you shall see what ground was his allotment or allod power the chiefs gained over the --and the plan was called the common men by this change of ALLODIAL SYSTEM. plan.
each man’s piece of land was When they had possession of a merely his feod—and this plan was conquered country, and any “sol- called the feodal or FEUDAL Sysdiers" who wanted to remain asked for a piece of land, the chief Ah! it was not so good a plan would say, “No-I have paid you. as when each man had his allotI will not give you any land, but I ment. Then every landowner will lend you some. I will let it to was his own master; but now, the you. There's a piece of land and lowest set of men were the servants a castle ;--and if you like to settle of the yeomen above them—they, there it shall be called yours—but in their turn, were the servants of every year you must pay me rent. their commanders—they, too, were I do not want you to pay this rent the servants of the knights or barons in money, but you must agree to above them,--and the barons, in
their turn, were the servants of the national assembly of the wise king. So that, instead of being in- men, which you have heard of dependent, they were all dependent and then, when war was declared, on one another. Nobody was free every man would fight because hé except the king, and he, you will wished. A part of the country soon find, had too much power. was his own land, and he fought
On the ALLODIAL SYSTEM each | in earnest-not only to defend all man was a little plant living by the country, but to take care of himself on his own ground.
his own dear household—“his L. And depending on his own wife and children at home.” But roots.
now the king could declare war P. Yes. While on the FEUDAL when he pleased, and all the rest SYSTEM each serf was merely a were obliged to fight. Then, each leaf hanging on one of the twigs— man fought only because he was each twig depended on one of the obliged. He did not fight so much boughs-each bough depended on for himself or for his own land, for one of the branches-and each he had none, but he fought because branch depended on the great his lord compelled him. They all trunk
fought, not for their country, but Ah! it was a great and sad dif- for their king. ference and it had a sad effect on Thus the people of England, the spirit of the great nations in like the people of Europe, felt and Europe; all seemed to be so many acted as
so many slaves. Now slaves, except the kings.
they were all dependent; they not And it was a sad change for the only lost their houses and lands, English, too. In Europe the bar- but they lost that great principle barians had changed to the feudal of liberty, which makes a man love system very slowly—just little by his life. little.' The Saxons, living in their When we print these History island, and not being so well able lessons in “ Pleasant Pages,” I to wander, or to conquer, had think it will do you good to read learned very little of this system. over this account of the feudal sysThey were mostly living in inde- tem twice or three times-because pendence on their allotments, when in these two plans are contained the fierce and cruel William con- two great principles (you know quered, and determined to intro- what principles are), which we will duce this feudal system, suddenly, try and watch all the way through and by force. He divided their the history of England-for they lands amongst about 70 of his are at work in the government of followers.
England, and amongst the men This change chilled the hearts who make the laws of England, of the people, and made them care even in this day. but little for their country.
many little parts of this Before this—no wars could be system remain still. I believe that made by the king, unless it was it has been a rule ever since, that the wish of the nation. He had the king may declare war without no right to do so without the con- asking the people or the parliament. sent of the Wittenagemot, the great l I think it is so now.