Forest Laws in the Middle Ages

One of the hallmarks of the feudal system that William of Normandy imposed on England after 1066 were laws.  In the case of forest laws, Norman law superseded the prior Anglo-Saxon laws in which rights to the forest (not necessarily just woods, but also heath, moorland, and wetlands) were not exclusive to the king or nobles, but were shared among the people.  Feudal forest laws, in contrast, were harsh, forbidding not only the hunting of game with in the forest, but even the cutting of wood or the collection of Read More…