I think that manorial living doesn’t get enough credit for raising the standard of living in Europe. We tend to focus on the Renaissance as the real economic miracle, and then the Industrial Revolution. But as I hope this video shows, it was the alliance between noble women and interested Church leaders that slowly, ever-so-slowly, raised standards of living by adding new skills and new industries to the manorial system. It certainly wasn’t perfect, and the serfs who lived under this system lived hard lives. Yet by 1200 AD, the average serf was still better off than his ancestors 400 years before.