People in History – Medieval Times

People in History – Medieval Times

Duties of the Lady of the castle

A lady of a castle had the task of the daily running of the castle. She and her husband usually lived on the top floor of the castle and they even had their own private chapel. The primary role of the lady of the castle was to rear their children and to make sure they were well educated. In most castles the lady was also in charge of the training of a young boy from another castle who was called a page-boy. It was the duty of the lady of the castle to look after him and to educate him and teach him good manners. The lady of the castle spent a part of each day in a special room called the solar, which was always facing south and received the most sunlight. She would play games such as chess and also spend a lot of time doing embroidery.


Training of a medieval craftsman

At the age of seven, a young boy became an apprentice and lived in the house of a master craftsman for up to a period of seven years. He received no pay but was given a chance to learn the skills of the trade. Some apprentices were treated very badly by their masters. At the end of seven years an apprentice became a journeyman, which meant he was free to go and seek work for himself in another town. If he wanted to become a master craftsman he would have to produce a masterpiece, which would then be examined by the members of the guild. If he was successful he could then set up his very own workshop and take on apprentices of his own.


Life of a Serf on a medieval manor

A serf lived in a small house with wattle and daub walls, an earthen floor and a thatched roof. Every serf owned a few animals and these were also kept inside the house at night. Most of their life was spent farming strips of land given to them by the lord of the manor. All of the farm work had to be done by hand and their animals were kept in a field called the common. They had to give ten percent of their crops to the church, which was called a tithe and they also had to work a few days per week for the lord. They weren’t allowed to fish in the rivers or hunt in the forests without the permission of the local lord.  They weren’t allowed to leave the village and they could be punished by being put in stocks or a pillory.

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