A Medieval Manor

Behind today's door - Ridge & furrow fields near Ettington (photographed by Rachel McCombie flying from Wellesbourne Mountford Airfield). This is evidence of strip farming methods.

Life on an English Manor in the reigns of Richard I & John

The illustrations in the textbook were taken from a book of psalms in the British Library.  The Luttrell Psalter is a primary source for all sorts of scenes of everyday life.  Click here to see every page on the British Library website.

98% of people lived as peasants on manors in the countryside. They had to work on their Lord's land, and were not allowed to move away.  Their lives were organised by the two inter-linked calendars of the Church Holy Days and the Farming Year.

Use your exercise book or revision guide (Richard & John) to answer these questions in note form:

1. There were several "ranks" of peasant.  What are the differences between a freeman, a villain and a serf?

2. How was farming land shared out amongst the peasants?

3. List some of the jobs peasants did.

4. What duties and taxes did the peasants owe to the Lord of the Manor?

5. List some of buildings in the manor village. What was each for?

6. Describe two features of manor life between 1189 - 1216. [4]

Upload your answer using the form on this page. 


  • 3-course rotation
  • Demesne
  • Fallow
  • Freeman
  • Furlong
  • Harvesting
  • Labour Service (Feudal duty)
  • Lord of the Manor
  • Luttrell Psalter
  • Mill
  • Peasant
  • Ploughing
  • Reeve
  • Serf
  • Shearing
  • Sowing
  • Tithe Barn
  • Villein

Revision Practice