Dales, long lands, and the medieval division of land in eastern England

Mark Gardiner

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    2 Citations (Scopus)


    The long, parallel fields of the marshlands between the Fens and the Humber estuary in eastern England, which are recorded on nineteenth-century maps, were the result of the division of the wetlands that occurred particularly during the twelfth and early thirteenth centuries. Areas of common fen pasture were partitioned between tenants to provide land for grazing and arable. Similar division also took place on the coastal strip and in the peat fen for land for salt-making and cutting fuel. These long strips, known as dales, are compared to similar areas in open fields in parts of Yorkshire and Northamptonshire, which have been discussed elsewhere. It is argued that the field shape is the result of a type of division in eastern England in which considerable emphasis was placed on case of partitioning land equitably.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1-14
    Number of pages14
    JournalAgricultural History Review
    Issue numberPART 1
    Publication statusPublished - 2009

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Agronomy and Crop Science
    • Animal Science and Zoology
    • Economics and Econometrics

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