Court leet

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The court leet was a historical court baron (a manorial court) of England and Wales and Ireland that exercised the "view of frankpledge" and its attendant police jurisdiction, (1911) "", Encyclopaedia Britannica which was normally restricted to the hundred court.


At a very early time in medieval England the Lord of the Manor exercised or claimed certain jurisdictional rights concerning the administration of his estate over his tenants and bondsmen, and exercised those rights through his court baron. However this court had no power to deal with crimes.

Criminal jurisdiction could, however, be granted to a trusted Lord by the Crown by means of an additional franchises to give him the prerogative rights he owed feudally to the king. The most important of these was the "view of frankpledge", by which tenants were held responsible for the actions of others within a grouping of ten households. Some time in the later Middle Ages the Lord, when exercising these powers, gained the name of leet which was a jurisdiction of a part of a county, hence the franchise was of court leet.

The quo warranto proceedings of Edward I established a sharp distinction between the court baron, exercising strictly manorial rights, and the court leet, depending for its jurisdiction upon royal...
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