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Author Topic:   Wondering
posted 10-01-2000 02:04 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dondelaney   Click Here to Email Dondelaney     Edit/Delete Message
I am trying to find resources on the numbers of people (and titles)who would live in a castle (app. year 1800).

What I am looking for is something like:
One Chamberlain
One master of Arms, etc
plus the numbers of assistants they would have. I realize that this is based on rank and population under ones control, but I would like to find a baseline for a King with a population of 210,000 people in Kingdom.

I appreciate this as I play AD&D and need such info to create realistic Castles for my players.

Philip Davis
posted 10-01-2000 06:22 PM           Edit/Delete Message
Although some castles were lived in in 1800 this is far from the peak age of the castles (those castles, like Windsor, which were lived in had be changed to stately homes and the fortifications were much diminished. In fact by 1800 the size of baronial households was much diminshed from medieval times and would be unlikely to have more than 50 household servants (associated farm labourers, gardeners and some household servants would be living out by this period). At the height of the medieval period, say about 1400, baronial household could be fairly massive as barons had small armies of retainers who would turn up for periods and for special occassions. A typical baron may have a household of 100 servants rising to several hundred on special occassions like a royal visit. Earlier in the medieval periods household were smaller, typically about 50, but were moving from castle to castle every month or so. Castles were often fairly empty, when a lord was in residence at another property and at these times a castle might have fewer than 10 people in it.

A population of 210,000 is very small for a european kingdom, certainly in 1800.

For a good insight into the social systems associated with the great homes and castles I suggest LIFE IN THE ENGLISH COUNTRY HOUSE A Social and Architectural History by Mark Girouard (see http://www.castlesontheweb.com/members/philipdavis/Books/LECHMG.html This will give you the titles of the various household positions and how the titles and status of servants changed over the centuries.

And as I rode by Dalton-Hall Beneath the turrets high, A maiden on the castle-wall Was singing merrily: The Outlaw by Sir Walter Scott

Senior Member
posted 10-25-2000 05:47 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Glaive203     Edit/Delete Message
philip is a litle off on this facts.Sumptuary laws limited a baron to a max living expense of 500 english pounds,with a normal baron having an income of around half that.A yeoman cost 3d a day to feed=4.5625 pounds a year,received pay of 5s and a change of clothes worth around a mark=1,315d(silver pennies)=5.479+ pounds,so the most a typical baron could have had is around 45-46 if he spent all is income on servents which they did not do! Your question is much more difficult than you think,assuming your talking about the middle ages rather then the turn of the 18th into the 19th century.The mddle ages saw more profound cultural changes than America has seen and all these changes effected both comital households and the institutions of the MA. Being overly simple the MA can be divided into two periods:feudalism proper and bastard feudalism.The major difference between them being that feudalism was based mainly on a barter economy and bastard feudalism founded upon a market economy. FEUDALISM During this period knighthood was the initiation into adulthood and knights always were warrior knights and squires always boys in training to be knights. A typical castle controlled the land in a radius of only five to ten miles around itself=100sq.miles as a large castlany=a typical subject populaton of only 5k-10k people.The earliest castellans might be called barons,knights or rich knights.Such a man had to be able to field 10 knights;but most had fewer and either payed scutages or hired landless knights to serve in their ranks if called up. A major castle would have had at least 4 constablries (groups of ten knights) serving castleward in quarterly rotations and aided by around 80 footwarriors,giving a max garrison of around 40 knights and 80 footmen.This garrison could be made up entirely of freemen(as in england where knights aided by franklins served castellans) or entirely of ministerials(in which case the garrison would be made up of mounted sergeants and sergeants) or of mixed free and bondmen(normally free knights aided by unfree sergeants serving as footmen).Castles were sometimes held by bodies of kinsmen with the patriarch of such a "kind" of kindred acting as lord of his relations. BASTARD FEUDALISM Lords were served by indentured(contracted) retainers and not by vassals.Knights were rich landlords and squires were the typical mounted warriors and normally adults.Lordship was very contracted from the feudal period,only the king could create new knights unlike the feudal period in which any knight could create another knight,or at least any knight rich enough to hold a castlany.The armies still retained the constablry grouping into 10 knights;but now it was called a banner made up of 10 lances commanded by 10 knights and followed by 40 squires.In both periods a truely major castle would have a garrison of 40-50 knights aided by 80-100 foot warriors in time of war.To give one concrete example the english garrisoned calais castle in france with a warden(normally a knight bachelor),around 39 squires and 80 men at arms.Out of time,I'll post more later.

Senior Member
posted 10-26-2000 04:19 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Glaive203     Edit/Delete Message
In england,during the late MA there were only 15 lords and 50 barons,an average earl had an estate of around 240,000 acres,which could support a max pop of around 96k using typical medeaval husbandry which took 2.5 acres/person.You should scale down the size of your Kingdoms to start with. Your lord's household would normally consisted of:a steward;a chamberlain;a pantler;a butler and maybe a master of the wardrobe as hall wardens/officials. His stables would have had:a constable;marshal;falconer and master of game.Finally he would have had a chaplain.These were almost universal household officers;but there were others too.

All times are PT (US)

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