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Encyclopedia > Frankpledge

An Anglo Saxon law in which units (often referred to as a tithing) of ten households were bound together and held responsible for one another's conduct.


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Frankpledge - LoveToKnow 1911 (600 words)
The view of frankpledge (visus franciplegii), or the duty of ascertaining that the law with regard to frankpledges was complied with, was in the hands of the sheriffs, who held an itinerant court called the "sheriff's tourn" for this and other purposes.
As the word frankpledge denotes, these societies were originally concerned only with freemen; but the unfree were afterwards admitted, and during the 13th century the frankpledges were composed chiefly of villains.
Sometimes a court for view of frankpledge, called in some places a mickleton, whereat the mayor or the bailiffs presided, was held for the whole borough; in other cases the borough was divided into wards, or into leets, each of which had its separate court.
Tithing - LoveToKnow 1911 (186 words)
In some districts the men who were bound to be in frankpledge were grouped in associations of ten, twelve or more individuals called tithings.
When a person who was accused of any crime was not forthcoming, inquiry was made whether he was in frankpledge; if he were not, and had no right of exemption, the township was amerced, but if he were in a tithing,-then it was upon the tithing that the amercement fell.
South of the Thames the tithings were districts normally identical with the township which discharged the duties of the frankpledge.
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