Measurements, Weights and Services.


It is difficult to give some idea of the amount of land involved as the actual measurements varied.

According to The Local Historians Encyclopaedia.


Land retained by the lord of the manor for his own use and upon which tenants gave free service according to the customs of the manor.

Knights Fee:

A Knight's Fee depended upon the quality of the land and was the amount required to support the knight and his family for one year. Usually between 4 and 48 Carucates (or Hides).

Acc/to Owen a knights fee is 640 acres and 5 knights fees held of the Earl of Pembroke were a barony.


A Carucate again depended upon the quality of the land, it could vary between 60 and 180 acres and was the amount of land that would support a family and could be ploughed in a year using one plough.

A Memorandum in the Black book of St David's - (was it added in 16c? - the introduction to the Black book would suggest that in the manuscript a " memorandum is given," so whether or not it was in the original manuscript could be questioned.) States that a carucate or hide of land contains 80 acres.

Acc/to Owen it was 64 acres.


An 1/8th of a carucate (also given as 20 acres)

A Bovate consisted of between 7 and 32 acres

The memorandum in the Black book of St David's - states that:- A bovate of land contains 7 acres.

Acc/to Owen 8 acres equals a bovate.

Margaret F. Davies [[1]] suggests, from evidence in the survey of Lands of the Bishop of St David's (1326), that a bovate was equal to 7 acres, a carucate equalled 80 acres and that this was the approximate size of the normal farm, 8 carucates was the equivalent of a knight's fee approximately one square mile of land.


The acre had been standardised by Edward I as being equal to 4840 square yards although previously it had been the size of the strip that could be ploughed by a yoke of oxen in a day.


The English virgate was a quarter of a carucate = 2 bovates.

But it would seem very doubtful if the virgate mentioned in the Black Book was that size as on one occasion a person is listed as holding 3 acres and 7 virgates which would indicated that an acre was somewhat over 7 virgates.


Welsh measure - Customary acre - here again there appears to be a discrepancy as the Black Book of St David's says that a person held an acre and a stang,  so a stang would appear to be certainly less than an acre and from other entries it would appear that it is about a quarter of an acre.

There is also a suggestion that the easements actually relate to the different plots that a person held.

Each tenement contains a stang, (Black Book of St David's - see Llamphey).


Acc/to the Black Book of St David's p.xii

The nature and size of a burgage tenement varied in size from Town to Town. It ought strictly to have included a house with a certain quantity of land but from the Black Book it would seem that in Wales, where a garden is mentioned as a burgage tenement in St Davids, a house was not always an essential part. The strict English rule was that a burgage tenement included a hearth therefore a house. The rent was a fixed sum irrespective of the size of the tenement although very often there was a variation as one burgage holder acquired part of another tenement. The map of the burgages of Pembroke town in medieval times, which illustrates Brian Paul Hindle's article on Medieval Pembroke, [[2]] shows plots of various sizes.



Would appear from mathematical calculations to be equivalent to a stone.


 Would appear to be equivalent of lb.


 "payers of quit rents" [[3]]


The mark originally was valued at 128 silver pennies (10s 8d) but was valued during this period at 13s 4d.


First issued in England by Edward III worth about 6s 8d.

[1] The Land of Britain  - Part 32  Pembrokeshire  1939.

[2]The Pembroke Historian No 6 1979

[3]Black Book of St Davids p xvii

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