Unovis (unovis) wrote in little_details,

independent villages?

In 15th to 16th century France, were all villages subject to or tied to a local lord, or were there independent settlements of people that just developed in certain areas because the land was good for cultivation or otherwise attractive?

In other words, if I set a story in a small rural village at this time, would I need to include a lord who owned the land? If all land was owned by the upper class, could I feasibly locate the land-owner some distance away?

I know peasants were subject to taxation and sometimes to conscription and everyone lived within a class system, but did any rural villages exist as independent entities, the same as towns? I'm embarassed I don't know this, but my memory isn't as good as it should be.
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