John "The Gneech" Robey (the_gneech) wrote,
John "The Gneech" Robey
the_gneech

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Happy Birthday, russ_arulo!

For your present, here's today's Forgotten English!

maiden rents
A noble [tax] by every tenant in the manor of Builth, in Radnor [Wales] at their marriage. It was anciently given the to the lord for his omitting the custom of Marcheta, whereby some think he was to have the first night's lodging with his tenant's wife.
--Thomas Blount's Law Dictionary and Glossary, 1717


Feast Day of St. Gengulf,
a patron of those in unhappy marriages. The above-mentioned marcheta, practiced throughout the British Isles, was further described in Blount's law dictionary: "By the custom of the Manor of Dinevor, in the county of Carmathen, every tenant at the marriage of his daughters pays ten shillings to the lord which, in the British language is called Gwabr-Merched, a "maid's fee." The custom for the lord to lay the first night with the bride of his tenant was very common in Scotland, and in the north parts of England. But it was abrogated by Malcolme III at the insistence of the queen, and instead thereof a mark was paid to the lord by the bridgegroom. From whence it is called marcheta muleris."

Ugh. Off with their heads! Long live the Republic.

For all its romantic allure, feudalism actually sucked something awful.

-The Gneech
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