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Vassal Lords Economic Control

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This lack of economic control was beneficial to the Vassal lords of France, as it allowed them to retain more of their own wealth and resources. Their resources were provided due to the fact that they had legal authority over the people, serfs, living on their land and could make them work for no pay, due to serfdom (8). This absence of taxation helped the Vassal lords to become economically independent of the crown and fund their own campaigns, as made evident by William of Normandy’s invasion of England in 1066.The quote, “Moreover the abundance of resources, or the lack of them, exalts or humbles the power of princes. For those who are lacking in them become a prey to their enemies, while those who are well supplied with them despoil their…show more content…
(10) Henry the 1st managed to secure economic control over his kingdom due to the fact that his taxation system removed his economic dependency upon his higher ranking subjects. This was accomplished through the creation of Sheriffs, officials who managed territories in the Kings name. However, unlike the situation in France the land still belonged to the King and he retained the ability to call upon its resources. The aristocracy were accepting of this system due to the financial benefits brought by the tax system. Each individual Sherriff was tasked with collecting a required amount of taxes per year, which was demanded by the treasury at the Exchequer court. Whilst this increased the King’s wealth, it was beneficial to the Sheriffs, who were permitted to collect additional taxes in order to enrich themselves. Whilst increasing the King’s own finances, it also provided a dependency of the Sheriffs upon the King, in contrast to the situation in France. This dependency originated from the fact that the position of Sheriff was not hereditary, and could only be attained through continuous loyalty to the King. Finally, the King could exercise his authority by calling in the debts of any who didn’t remain in his favour, whilst at the same time ignoring the debts of those who did. Overall, Henry the 1st took economic control of his country by creating a system upon which his aristocracy’s wealth and resources were dependent upon him. In this system loyalty to the King was highly beneficial, whilst at the same time the King’s own wealth and resources grew and prevented problems occurring similar to the dependency faced by the Kings of
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