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control of the Norman exchequer, and although the loss was, with the exception of Gisors and a few other places, temporary, the Norman Vexin and Bray were henceforward rarely at peace. Owing to the loss of Gisors they cost more for their defence than they could contribute. As Philip advanced, seizing a little here and a little there, he restricted the revenue-yielding area while he forced an increase in Norman expenditure.
The fixed farms of the Norman bailiwicks and preposituræ amounted to £20,000 a year in Angevin money. Now, if we take the usual military season about the year 1200, from Saint Hilary's day (January 13) to Michaelmas, and place a fairly small garrison of two knights, five men-atarms of the cavalry class, and twenty other men-at-arms in a second-class fortress, we find that a cost of £650 is incurred.2 Thirty such garrisons would consume the fixed revenue of Normandy, and the Norman government was responsible for the defence of about forty-five castles, many of which would need a much larger garrison than the one described. It is of course true that the majority of these places were maintained by local effort, and would only be specially garrisoned during a critical period, but when we reflect upon the other expenses of the year, both military and civil, it is clear that the additional revenue required must have been great. As I have said, English aid was necessary, to supplement the proceeds of aids, tallages and loans.
If the series of exchequer rolls were complete, it would doubtless be possible to compile the financial history of Normandy between 1194 and 1203. But from the three rolls which survive only general conclusions can be drawn. Aids were imposed for special as well as for general objects,
1. Above, p. 146. Moreover the Norman exchequer, by the treaty of 1193, was responsible for the maintenance of the garrisons placed by Philip in Arques and Drincourt.
2. Rot. Scacc., ii, 513, 514. This was the garrison at Gavrai in 1203. 3. Above, pp. 103 seqq.
for a siege, a fortification or the wages of soldiers on the Norman march. Some of these were levied instead of service, some were probably taxes levied on the ducal demesne, Casual references upon the exchequer rolls show that in 1202 a tallage was laid upon the lands of Normandy held in free alms, or in other words upon the Church, and that in 1203 a general aid of two shillings was levied throughout the Norman bailiwicks. This last evidently corresponds to the English carucage, and shows that under the stress of war the Norman and English financial systems were being assimilated. The greatest pressure, however, was felt by the towns. The richer burgesses or property holders were taxed at £10 and upwards, and their contributions reached a total, varying with the size of the towns, from £100 or so up to the £600 of Bayeux and the £650 of Falaise. By these means enormous sums were raised for the defence of the march.
These exactions were supplemented by loans from towns, bailiwicks, Jews and private persons, by the proceeds of amercements, fines and sureties and the chattels of deceased usurers. 5 But as time went on John relied more and more upon his treasure from England. In 1203 the king was unable to pay the wages of his servants on the march; early in February, at the commencement of the most critical
year of warfare, numerous orders were issued
1. See Delisle, Bibliothèque, xiii, 120–126. As Delisle points out in a note on pp. 119, 120, the terms auxilium and tallagium were frequently used alternatively in Normandy.
2. Rot. Norm., 65 : "occasione tallagii positi super elemosina Normannie."
3. Ibid., 90: “auxilium duorum solidorum quod positum fuit generaliter in Normannia."
4. Delisle, op. cit., p. 130. For the method of assessment, see the exchequer rolls, passim. The numerous emprumenta or loans were collected in the same way. They are, of course, distinct from the loans made by individuals which are mentioned below.
6. The chattels and lands of William of Calviz, a usurer, brought in large sums in 1195.
to meet the deficit by means of English treasure; half the arrears up to February 9th were to be paid, and full pay for twenty days beyond that date.' It has been calculated that during this year 18,120 marks of silver were sent from England into Normandy. In Angevin money this sum would amount to £48,320, or more than double the fixed Norman revenue.
Two facts, which are closely connected, are revealed very clearly by a study of Angevin finance during the reign of King John. In the first place, although the various exchequers had in concert with the royal chamber developed a careful system of bookkeeping, they did not make any attempt at a financial policy. Enormous sums were gathered, distributed and spent; and every official concerned in their collection or expenditure rendered account of his service, but it was nobody's business to inquire whether the money was exacted wisely or expended prudently. It was particularly desirable that the Angevin government should know how it stood because -and here I come to the second point-finance was becoming a cosmopolitan power. Credit, with its subtle operations and reactions, was growing. Untouched by the annual stocktaking at the exchequer, new forms of accommodation, fresh sources of wealth were opened to Richard and John by Jew, money-changer and Italian merchant. Centuries were to pass before the European states learned the elementary canon of sound finance, that the need for a careful examination of accounts grows proportion to the ease with which money can be obtained; but a habit of financial criticism would have been sufficient to check the recklessness of the Angevin kings. Unfortunately, this habit could only be formed in a state which felt the unity given by national sentiment.
1. Rot. Norm., 75, 76. The statement in the text are deductions from the entries on these pages.
2. Delisle, in Bibliothèque, x, 289. The calculatio made om the Liberate roll for 1203.
possible in the England of Henry III; it was not possible in the Angevin empire, for the empire was only kept together by those very ties of a common financial administration which it is the function of national sentiment to control.
It is worth while to dwell upon and illustrate these aspects of Angevin administration.
The exchequers of the various states which formed the empire, England, Normandy, Anjou, Poitou, seem to have been regarded as parts of a single system. The treasure which they collected and preserved was circulated freely from one part of the empire to the other. It is true that a considerable proportion of the royal income was earmarked for special purposes, such as the payment of tithes. But most of these appropriations were of ancient date; though protected by reverence or custom, they did not affect the general principle of feudal finance, the confusion of “public” with private revenue; they resulted from no development in public action, still less of public opinion. Hence the course of time, while it necessarily brought with it an addition to these obligations, brought no theory of the distinction between the national exchequer and the privy purse. The king issued the same form of writ for the passage of his dogs as he did for the payment of his mercenaries. With the proceeds of fines and dues
1. The co-operation between the exchequers of Caen and Westminster may be illustrated by the arrangements for the payment of Queen Berengaria's dower (Rot. Pat., 2b). Payments into one exchequer were deducted from payments due at the other (e.g., Rot. Scacc., ii, 496 : the debts of the chamberlain of Tancarville). The Poitevin exchequer is mentioned in Rot. Norm., 28.
2. Above, p. 42. Compare Rot. Scacc., i, 56, 57, "pro thesauris portandis de Cadomo in Andegaviam et in plura loca per Normanniam"; Rot. Norm., 31 : to the seneschal and barons of the Norman exchequer "computate R. Abbati 6375 marcas argenti quas liberavit in camera nostra ante exercitum Gasconie de thesauro nostro Anglie anno regni nostri secundo." The Norman treasuries were at Caen, Falaise (e.g., Rot. Scacc., i, 39), and apparently Vaudreuil (Rot. Chart., 17).
he might march to relieve a city, rebuild a church, buy a new coat of mail or pay his gambling debts.
The royal power over the proceeds of the feudal state extended also to the sources of revenue. Here, again, no distinction was made between the public and the private position of the king. All tenures were equally public or equally private; and as they were equally protected by law and custom, so beyond the scope of law, they were equally subject to royal policy or royal whim. The wisdom or folly of the king decided whether public policy or private caprice should dispose of demesne, escheats, wardships or forfeitures. By careful management Henry II had doubled his income; by mismanagement John brought chaos. In the latter's reign the royal chamber (camera) was a centre of intrigue and recklessness. Treasure poured in and was poured out in heedless confusion. Writ after writ issued from it at the dictation of the spasmodic policy or favour of the king, for the disposal of lands and rents. John was, it is true, a hard man at a bargain. The Bertram and a few other wardships sold well. Those escheats which he kept in his hands were highly farmed. An elaborate system of pledges enabled him, with no expense to himself, to insure the fidelity of his vassals by making them go warranty for each other. But his astuteness went no further. Lands and wealth which might have been absorbed in the royal demesne and given strength to local administration were scattered. As Philip ate his way into Normandy and occupied more and more territory, this disregard for economy reacted with
1. Rot. Pat., 19, October 18th, 1202: "sciatis quod concessimus Roberto de Tebovilla custodiam terre et filii et filie Roberti Bertram pro sex milia li. And., ita quod habebit predictos filium et filiam in custodia donec ad legitmam etatem pervenerint.” The terms of the agreement which follows are detailed and interesting. See Stapleton, II, ccxi, note. The wardship was of the Norman honour of the Bertram house, which included property in Norfolk and Essex. It should be distinguished from the Northumbrian house (Red Book, ii, 698; Rotuli de Oblatis et finibus, 478).