Here is your short essay on the merits of Feudalism



Feudalism provided a rough and imperfect form of government to the people in an age of insecurity. Firstly, at a time when people were not ripe for a centralized empire, it provided law and order. It even provided social and economic security to the lowest sections of society viz the serf.

Secondly, the landlords could not deprive the serfs of their land and had to look after them during their disability, illness and old age.

Thirdly, it contributed to the developments of virtues like loyalty, brav­ery, generosity, humility and courtesy. Relations between lord and vassal rested on high regard for truth and promised word. The vassals showed every possible courtesy to the lords and served them with loyalty and humility. On their part, the lords showed love and generosity towards vassals.

Fourthly, feudalism set social and moral trends. The feudal lords showed to the rest of the world how to wear clothes, how to eat, how to ask a lady for a dance and numerous other things. These customs bred a veneration for women and they were extended every possible respect. As a result women came to occupy high place in their families. They received education and worked as help-mates to their husbands and advi­sors to their sons.

Fifthly, feudalism rested on the principle that government was a con­tract which enjoined upon the lord and his vassal certain rights and duties. It also asserted that the King was bound by feudal laws. This principle proved greatly helpful to the middle classes in latter period in checking royal absolutism.

Finally, feudalism paved the way for the emergence of states in modern times. In course of time some feudal lords managed to get upper hand of their rivals and expanded their domain. They began to enforce stricter obedience on their vassals as well as people within their territory. Thus strong kingdoms and principalities were established.

Thus Duke of Nor­mandy conquered England in 1066 and his successors created the English Kingdom; successors of Hugh Capet created the Kingdom of Franc6; the Margraves of Brandenburg established Kingdom of Prussia; Rudolph of Habsburg built the state of Austria and so on.