Page:VCH Warwickshire 1.djvu/354

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.


NOTE The reader should bear in mind throughout that the date of the Domesday Survey is 1086 ; that the time of King Edward (here expressed by T.R.E.), to which it refers, normally means the date of his death (5 January 1066), and that the intermediate date, which is spoken of as ' afterwards,' is that at which the estate passed into the hands of the new holder. The Domesday ' hide ' was a unit of assessment divided into four quarters called ' virgates,' each of which was reckoned to contain 30 ' acres' ; but these were merely fiscal, not areal measures. 'Demesne' was that portion of a manor which the holder (whether a tenant-in-chief or only an under-tenant) worked as a home farm with the help of labour due from the peasants who held the rest from him. But when the term ' demesne ' is applied to a fief, it denotes those of its manors which remained in the baron's hands and were not held of him by under-tenants. Of the peasantry, the three main classes were, in descending order, villeins, bordars and serfs. The classes above them are dealt with in the Introduction. The essen- tial element of the plough ('caruca') was its team of oxen, always reckoned in Domesday as eight in number. The ' league ' of the record appears to have been a mile and a half long (see Introduction, p. 292). It must always be remembered that when Domes- day speaks of a place as held by a certain tenant, it does not follow that the whole of it is thereby meant. For the vills often comprised other manors which form the subject of separate entries. The notes of the text which are initialled J.H.R. have been added by Mr. Round, the Domesday editor. Those to which B.W. is appended are contributed by Mr. Benjamin Walker, who kindly read the proofs. 298