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Arrière-ban

In medieval France, the arrière-ban (Latin retrobannum[1]) is a general proclamation whereby the king summons to war all his vassals and their vassals. To the Provost of Paris belongs the convoking and commanding of the arrière-ban.[2] The term is a folk-etymological correction of Old French herban (attested 1101), from Germanic here (army) and ban (proclamation); compare German Heerbann.[3]

In the Medieval usage, arrière-ban denoted a general levy, where all able-bodied males age 15 to 60 living in the Kingdom of France were summoned to go to war by the King (or the constable and the marshals). Men were summoned by the bailiff (or the senechal in the south). Bailiffs were military and political administrators installed by the King to steward and govern a specific area of a province following the king's commands and orders. The men summoned in this way were then summoned by the lieutenant who was the King's representative and military governor over an entire province comprising many bailiwicks, seneschalties and castellanies. All men from the richest noble to the poorest commoner were summoned under the arrière-ban and they were supposed to present themselves to the King or his officials carrying arms and armor according to their wealth.[2] It is the same as the English commissions of Array.

The arrière-ban was re-instituted in France by Philip IV (1285–1314), who asserted his right to military service from the tenants and vassals of his vassals. The arrière-ban could be commuted by a money payment, which became an important source of revenue for the crown.[1]

The arrière-ban was proclaimed throughout the Kingdom of France on April 30, 1337.[4]

Notes

  1. ^ a b Theodore Evergates, "Ban, Banalité", in W. W. Kibler and G. A. Zinn (eds.), Medieval France: An Encyclopedia (New York: Garland, 1995), pp. 175–76.
  2. ^ a b "arrière-ban". The Free Dictionary. Retrieved 17 September 2012.
  3. ^ "arrière-ban, n." OED Online, Oxford University Press, January 2018. Accessed 18 February 2018.
  4. ^ Sumption. The Hundred Years War. p. 184

References

  • Sumption, Jonathan (1991). The Hundred Years War I: Trial by Battle. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press. ISBN 0-8122-1655-5.



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