Medieval manors, also called "manor houses", were simple rectagular buildings.
While the term "medieval manors" can be applied to a range of buildings, all of these buildings shared the distinction of belonging to a lord or landowner.
These medieval buildings served as a communal gathering place where people could eat, sleep and engage in business transactions.
The buildings were dominated by what is called the Great Hall. The lord and his family occupied a raised dais at one end of the hall, while servants slept around an open fire in the center of the hall.
Manors were built of stone and they were intended to last for a long time. Few medieval manors exist today in their original form. Many of these structures were upgraded during the centuries following their initial construction. A medieval manor was a great foundation for building a keep or perhaps even a castle.
As is the case with many homeowners today, medieval manors were a sign of wealth and importance. Medieval lords would seek to impress other nobles and their manors played a key role in this ambition.
The decor and furnishings of the manor was very important in making the right impression as was the act of simply holding on to the meieval manor, for lords could lost their manors if they neglected the duties required of them by the feudal system or if the lords angered the king.
Some medieval manors in existence today are listed below:
- Bowley CourtLocated between Melkham and Chippenham in Wiltshire, England.
- Bradford ManorLocated north of Chippenham in Wiltshire, England.
- Great Chalfied Manor HouseLocated northeast of Bradford-On-Avon in Wiltshire, England.This is perhaps one of the most impressive medieval manors in existence today.