How to use Serfs in a sentence
On other estates the serfs' compulsory labor was commuted for a quitrent.
Sonya, Natasha, Petya, Anna Mikhaylovna, Vera, and the old count were all hugging him, and the serfs, men and maids, flocked into the room, exclaiming and oh-ing and ah-ing.
Assisted no doubt by their judicial control, the Eupatridae also tended to become sole owners of the land, reducing the original freeholders or tenants to the position of serfs.
But she was good to all, not even forgetting the serfs.
Thus by the law of 1861 more than forty millions of serfs were emancipated.Advertisement
Below the feudal nobility and their Moslem soldiers came the Christian serfs, tillers of the soil and taxpayers, whose lives and property were at the mercy of their lords.
Serfs in the imperial mines were liberated and organized in Cossack regiments (the Transbaikal Cossacks); some of these were settled on the Amur, forming the Amur and Usuri Cossacks.
Since the emancipation of the serfs in 1861, it has been steadily increasing, the Russian peasants of a village often emigrating en bloc.'
Every lord who possessed serfs could levy the taille on them, and originally this was done arbitrarily (a volonte) both as to frequency and amount.
At that time there was no royal taille, strictly speaking; it was only the seigniorial taille transferred to the crown, but it was one of the first taxes his right to levy which upon all the inhabitants of the domain of the crown, whether serfs or roturiers, was recognized.Advertisement
On the other hand, his example in manumitting most of his slaves, together with the precepts of the church, practically put an end to slavery in the course of the 13th century, the slaves becoming for the most part serfs, who differed from the free peasants only in the fact that they were attached to the soil (adscripti glebae).
The most valuable part of his property still consisted of flocks and herds, or the products of the labours of his serfs, a large proportion of whom were bee-keepers, hunters and fishers employed in and around the interminable virgin-forests of the rough-hewn young monarchy.
During the reign of Coloman, moreover, the number of freemen was increased by the frequent manumission of serfs.
The stupid and abortive conspiracy of Peter Zrinyi and three other magnates, who were publicly executed (April 30, 1671), was followed by wholesale arrests and confisca 1 The jobbagyok, or under-tenants, had to follow the example of their lords; they were, by this time, mere serfs with no privileges either political or religious.
He did something for the furtherance of learning by establishing schools in every town and by giving privileges to serfs who adopted a scholastic life.Advertisement
In 485 the Gamori, who had been expelled by the Demos and the Sicel serfs, and had taken refuge at Casmenae, craved help of Gelo, the successor of Hippocrates, who took possession of Syracuse without opposition, and made it the seat of his power.
His most important domestic measure was the chaining of the peasantry to the soil, a measure directed against the ever increasing migration of the down-trodden serfs to the steppes, where they became freebooters instead of tax-payers.
Sparta in particular remained, even after the reforms of Lycurgus, and on into historic times, simply the isolated camp of a compact army of occupation, of some s000 families, bearing traces still of the fusion of several bands of invaders, and maintained as an exclusive political aristocracy of professional soldiers by the labour of a whole population of agricultural and industrial serfs.
The serfs were rigidly debarred from intermixture or social advancement, and were watched by their masters with a suspicion fully justified by recurrent ineffectual revolts.
The conquered in many cases could be left as serfs and tillers of the soil, while the conquerors seized the higher positions of administration and power.Advertisement
The founder of a colony was styled a patroon, and, although the colonists were bound to him only by a voluntary contract for specified terms, the relations between them and the patroon during the continuance of the contract were in several important respects similar to those under the feudal system between the lord of a manor and his serfs.
That servitude existed in many forms all over the archipelago, but among the most curious must be reckoned the pandelingschap or "pledgedom," which originated in Borneo, and according to which a man had the power to make his debtors his serfs until their debts were paid.
In the cities the Moslems, who had generally secured such terms of surrender, retained their mosques, their kadis, and freedom of trade; in the country, however, they became serfs.
Even the peasants, who had suffered severely from the wholesale establishment of prisoners of war as serfs on the estates of the nobles, still preserved the rights of personal liberty and free transit from place to place, whence their name of lazigi.
Thus, in the reign of Alexander, the fugitive serfs whom tyranny or idleness had driven into this wilderness (they were subsequently known as Kazaki, or Cossacks, a Tatar word meaning freebooters) were formed into companies (c. 1504) and placed at the disposal of the frontier starostas, or lord marchers, of Kaniev, Kamenets, Czerkask on the Don and other places.Advertisement
Louis the Great placed the burgesses on a level with the gentry by granting to the town council of Cracow jurisdiction over all the serfs in the extra-rural estates of the citizens.
The condition of the serfs was subsequently (1520) still further deteriorated by the introduction of socage.
At a subsequent confederation, held at Lublin in June, Zebrzydowski was reinforced by another great nobleman, Stanislaus Stadnicki, called the Devil, who "had more crimes on his conscience than hairs on his head," and was in the habit of cropping the ears and noses of small squires and chaining his serfs to the walls of his underground dungeons for months at a time.
Hunters and fishermen frequented its innumerable rivers, returning home laden with rich store of fish and pelts, while runaway serfs occasionally settled in small communities beneath the shelter of the fortresses built, from time to time, to guard the 'southern frontiers of Poland and Muscovy.
The union of Lublin, which led to the polonization of Lithuania, was the immediate occasion of a considerable exodus to the lowlands of the Dnieper of those serfs who desired to escape from the taxes of the Polish government and the tyranny of the Polish landlords.
But the relations between a community of freebooters, mostly composed of fugitive serfs and refugees, and a government of small squires who regarded the Cossacks as a mere rabble were bound to be difficult at the best of times, and political and religious differences presently supervened.
The immediate consequence of these victories was the outburst of a khlopskaya zloba, or "serfs' fury."
The existence of so many ecclesiastical writers was a natural feature in Polish literature; they formed the only really cultured class in the community, which consisted besides of a haughty ignorant nobility living among their serfs, and (at a vast distance) those serfs themselves, in a brutalized condition.
English lurked in farms and hovels, amongst villeins and serfs, in the outlying country-districts, in the distant ' See Stevenson, Waring and Skeat, op. cit.
Taking advantage of a petition presented by the Polish landed proprietors of the Lithuanian provinces, praying that their relations with the serfs might be regulated in a more satisfactory way - meaning in a way more satisfactory for the proprietors - he authorized the formation of committees "for ameliorating the condition of the peasants," and laid down the principles on which the amelioration was to be effected.
The Jews were regarded as the king's serfs, and squeezing them was but a popular form of taxing the people.
They were divided into freemen and serfs (Sarmatae Limigantes), the latter of whom had a different manner of life and were probably an older settled population enslaved by nomad masters.
The freedom he had demanded for the serfs was granted, the law-courts he had so long denounced were remodelled, trial by jury was established,.
Her renowned toleration stopped short of allowing the dissenters to build chapels, and her passion for legislative reform grew cold when she found that she must begin by the emancipation of the serfs.
In such noble projects of reform as the emancipation of the serfs (see Reventlow) Bernstorff took a leading part, and so closely did he associate himself with everything Danish, so popular did he become in the Danish capital, that a Swedish diplomatist expressed the opinion that henceforth Bernstorff could not be removed without danger.
Emmanuel reformed the currency, reorganized justice, prepared the way for the emancipation of the serfs, raised the standing army to 25,000 men, and fortified the frontiers, ostensibly against Huguenot raids, but in reality from fear of France.
Beneath all these, forming the mass of the agricultural population, were the peasantry and the serfs, the latter attached to the land, the former ground down by heavy taxes.
Though organized on similar lines, with a citizen population divided into three Dorian tribes (and one containing other elements), with a class of Perioeci (neighbouring dependents) and of serfs, the Argives had no more constant foe than their Lacedaemonian kinsmen.
The Berbers, though they had pledged themselves to Islam and had furnished the latest contingents for the Holy War, were treated as tributary serfs, notwithstanding the promises given by Omar II.
The fact that a great number of these serfs had been enjoying protection as free ceorls in former ages made itself felt, however, in three directions.
His civil reforms include the abolition of the system of prepaying taxes which had weighed heavily upon the wealthier proprietors, the elevation of the serfs into a class of free tenants, the remodelling of family and of maritime law.
The immigrants were of widely differing status, many being serfs who came either with or without their lords' permission.
In1606-1611the trading classes of Nizhniy took an active part in the expeditions against the revolted serfs, and it was a Nizhniy dealer in cattle, Kozma Minin Sukhorukov, who took the initiative in sending an army for the delivery of Moscow from the Poles in 1612.
In the 4th century, however, Philippus of Theangela in south Caria describes Leleges still surviving as serfs of the true Carians, and Strabo, in the 1st century B.C., attributes to the Leleges a well-marked group of deserted forts, tombs and dwellings which ranged (and can still be traced) from the neighbourhood of Theangela and Halicarnassus as far north as Miletus, the southern limit of the "true Carians" of Pherecydes.
Plutarch also implies the historic existence of Lelegian serfs at Tralles in the interior.
A powerful aristocracy was constituted, which owned estates and had them cultivated by serfs or villeins.
The middle and lower parts of ' the Bukhtarma valley have been colonized since the 18th century by runaway Russian peasants - serfs and nonconformists (Raskolniks) - who created there a free republic on Chinese territory; and after this part of the valley was annexed to Russia in 1869, it was rapidly colonized.
The valley was originally inhabited by the serfs of various great lords in summer for the sake of pasturage.
But the whole class, apart from minor variations, was characterized by the idea that the peasants in question were serfs of the soil (servi terrae) on which they were settled, though protected by the laws in their personal and even in their praedial status.
With the break-up of the Roman empire the legal protection in regard to serfs could not be kept up in the same way as before.
The weak governments which took the place of imperial authority were not able to maintain the strict discipline and the stress of judicial power which would have been necessary to guarantee the tenure and status of the serfs.
These slaves had their separate households, while the masters exacted tribute from them in the shape of corn, cattle or clothes, and the serfs had to obey to the extent of rendering such tribute (Tacitus, Germania, 21).
But in process of time this group was merged with freedmen, settled slaves (servi casati) and small freedmen into the numerous class of serfs (servi, rustici, villani) which appears under different names in all western European countries.
Of these various groups that of the geburs corresponds more closely to the continental serfs (coloni, Härige, unfreie Hintersassen).
But the number of personal serfs was not large and they were principally to be met in the households of great people.
After several half-hearted attempts directed in the course of Nicholas I.'s reign to face the question while safeguarding at the same time the rights and privileges of the old aristocracy, the moral collapse of the ancien regime during the Crimean war brought about the Emancipation Act of the 19th of February 1861, by which some 15 millions of serfs were freed from bondage.
Villeins and serfs in France rise gradually in the social scale, redeem many of the onerous services of feudalism and practically acquire tenant-right on most of the plots occupied by them.
He looked askance at all projects for the emancipation of the serfs, but, as one of the largest landowners of Denmark, he did much service to agriculture by lightening the burdens of the countrymen and introducing technical and scientific improvements which greatly increased production.
Rumanian historians have striven, by Vlachs piecing together the stray fragments of evidence which survive, to prove that their Vlach ancestors had not, as sometimes alleged, been reduced to a scattered community of nomadic shepherds, dwelling among the Carpathians as the serfs of their more powerful neighbours.
The immediate consequence of these victories was the outbreak of a "serfs' fury."
He entered with enthusiasm, both from patriotic and from economical motives, into the question of the improvement of the condition of the serfs and their partial emancipation.
He left an estate worth five millions of roubles and 30,000 serfs.
In 1857, during the absence of the emperor,, he presided over the commission formed to consider the question of the emancipation of the serfs, to which he was altogether hostile.
Other deputies rose to demand the repeal of the game laws, the enfranchisement of such serfs as were still to be found in France, and the abolition of tithes and of feudal courts and to renounce all privileges, whether of classes, of cities, or of provinces.
They were accused of ordaining serfs without the consent of their lords, consecrating bishops per saltum, i.e.
Fuidirs had no rights in the sept; some were true serfs, others tenants-at-will; they lived in scattered homesteads like the farmers of the present time.
Finally, behind this bourgeoisie, and afar off, came the crowd of serfs, rustics whom the acquisition of land had gradually enfranchised, and who were the more eager to enjoy their definitive liberation because it was close at hand.
This would be preeminently the case with the smaller landowners who formed the curiales, and who were in reality serfs of the fisc, for on them fell the main weight of taxation, and they were confined to their position by oppressive laws.
As the conquerors swept away the Roman fiscal system, which the Visigoths had retained, and replaced it by a poll tax (which was not levied on old men, women, children, cripples or the very poor) and a land tax, the gain to the downtrodden serfs of the fisc was immense.
There was the same king possessing theoretically almost absolute power, both administrative and legislative; the same nobles who limited his effective power by rebellion, their constant effort to keep the crown elective, and his no less steady, and by the 10th century victorious, effort to make it hereditary; the same distinction between the few free, who are also the rich owners of land, and the many serfs, who are partial bondsmen, or the slaves pure and simple.
But the emancipation of the serfs made progress.
Iii many cases the serfs in the course of their struggle for freedom extorted charters and fueros.
From the serfs of the Middle Ages sprang the chartered burghers of the earliest towns.
Might we eventually return to the iniquitous polarity of a land-owning gentry v the serfs?
As a result, he was registered under the name of one of his father's serfs.
In 1861, Alexander II had emancipated the serfs.
So the Czar would create revolution and free the serfs - " Better from above than from below.
Their land and, livestock taken away from them, they have been condemned to the status of starving, landless serfs.
All across the land, everyone knew that the little serfs in the kingdom were nothing more that a pack of cheats.
Back in feudal times serfs on the land worked with the seasons and daylight.
The former serfs occupy on the average about an acre, paying a rent of from twenty to twenty-four francs.
The influence of the Orthodox Church was very great, particularly over the illiterate serfs and peasantry.
By that time some state serfs had been freed, some individual owners had freed their serfs.
So it may not simply be wage serfs who are signing up for union membership.
The elite class deceived the working serfs and kept them in virtual slavery.
Dissidence of all kinds has made a considerable advance since the emancipation of the serfs in 1861, the increase - as might be expected in a wholly illiterate population - being greatest in the more extravagant sects.
Though the young emperor was of too phlegmatic a temperament to be carried away by the prevailing excitement and of too practical a turn of mind to adopt wholesale the doctrinaire theories of his selfconstituted, irresponsible advisers, he recognized that great administrative and economic changes were required, and after a short period of hesitation he entered on a series of drastic reforms, of which the most important were the emancipation of the serfs, the thorough reorganization of the judicial administration and the development of local self-government.
The serfs were liberated entirely from the arbitrary rule of the landowners and became proprietors of the communal land; the old tribunals which could be justly described as " dens of iniquity and incompetence," were replaced by civil and criminal lawcourts of the French type, in which justice was dispensed by trained jurists according to codified legislation, and from which the traditional bribery and corruption were rigidly excluded; and the administration of local affairs - roads, schools, hospitals, &c. - was entrusted to provincial and district councils freely elected by all classes of the population.
Tradition ascribed to him the capture of the maritime town of Helos, which resisted his attempt to curtail its guaranteed rights, and the institution of the class of serfs called Helots.
During the campaign he displayed the same perseverance and the same moderation that he had shown in the emancipation of the serfs.
He recovered some of the lost crown lands and sought to abolish new and unauthorized tolls on the Rhine; he encouraged the towns and took measures to repress private wars; he befriended the serfs and protected the persecuted Jews.
Of these various groups that of the geburs corresponds more closely to the continental serfs (coloni, HÃrige, unfreie Hintersassen).
Who made them serfs of the soil?
As soon as the provocatively gay strains of Daniel Cooper (somewhat resembling those of a merry peasant dance) began to sound, all the doorways of the ballroom were suddenly filled by the domestic serfs--the men on one side and the women on the other--who with beaming faces had come to see their master making merry.
With those about him, from his daughter to his serfs, the prince was sharp and invariably exacting, so that without being a hardhearted man he inspired such fear and respect as few hardhearted men would have aroused.
The prince went through the conservatories, the serfs' quarters, and the outbuildings, frowning and silent.
In the outlying serfs' quarters torches and candles were burning and no one slept.
Pierre proposed going to his estates in the south and there attending to the welfare of his serfs.
Continuing to represent the liberation of the serfs as impracticable, he arranged for the erection of large buildings--schools, hospitals, and asylums--on all the estates before the master arrived.
The estates he had not before visited were each more picturesque than the other; the serfs everywhere seemed thriving and touchingly grateful for the benefits conferred on them.
He did not know that the brick buildings, built to plan, were being built by serfs whose manorial labor was thus increased, though lessened on paper.
Some domestic serfs Pierre met, in reply to inquiries as to where the prince lived, pointed out a small newly built lodge close to the pond.
It is those people I pity, and for their sake I should like to liberate the serfs.
So that's what I'm sorry for--human dignity, peace of mind, purity, and not the serfs' backs and foreheads, which, beat and shave as you may, always remain the same backs and foreheads.
On one of his estates the three hundred serfs were liberated and became free agricultural laborers--this being one of the first examples of the kind in Russia.
A trained midwife was engaged for Bogucharovo at his expense, and a priest was paid to teach reading and writing to the children of the peasants and household serfs.
The reforming party cordially welcomed and courted him, in the first place because he was reputed to be clever and very well read, and secondly because by liberating his serfs he had obtained the reputation of being a liberal.
Yes, she's a good dog, gets what she's after, answered Ilagin indifferently, of the red-spotted bitch Erza, for which, a year before, he had given a neighbor three families of house serfs.
Some five male domestic serfs, big and little, rushed out to the front porch to meet their master.
A score of women serfs, old and young, as well as children, popped out from the back entrance to have a look at the hunters who were arriving.
The serfs all dispersed.
There an old maidservant was grumbling at a young girl who stood panting, having just run in through the cold from the serfs' quarters.
She seemed to be trying whether any of them would get angry or sulky with her; but the serfs fulfilled no one's orders so readily as they did hers.
The mummers (some of the house serfs) dressed up as bears, Turks, innkeepers, and ladies--frightening and funny--bringing in with them the cold from outside and a feeling of gaiety, crowded, at first timidly, into the anteroom, then hiding behind one another they pushed into the ballroom where, shyly at first and then more and more merrily and heartily, they started singing, dancing, and playing Christmas games.
The visitors were invited to supper in the drawing room, and the serfs had something served to them in the ballroom.
Had he not established schools and hospitals and liberated his serfs?
He shifts the Dukes about as I might move my serfs from Bald Hills to Bogucharovo or my Ryazan estates.
Next day the Emperor arrived in Moscow, and several of the Rostovs' domestic serfs begged permission to go to have a look at him.
Pierre wished to say that he was ready to sacrifice his money, his serfs, or himself, only one ought to know the state of affairs in order to be able to improve it, but he was unable to speak.
His satellites--the senior clerk, a countinghouse clerk, a scullery maid, a cook, two old women, a little pageboy, the coachman, and various domestic serfs--were seeing him off.
You must go away too, take away what you can and tell the serfs to go to the Ryazan estate or to the one near Moscow.
Princess Mary saw him walk out of the house in his uniform wearing all his orders and go down the garden to review his armed peasants and domestic serfs.
In the vicinity of Bogucharovo were large villages belonging to the crown or to owners whose serfs paid quitrent and could work where they pleased.
On the way to Bogucharovo, a princely estate with a dwelling house and farm where they hoped to find many domestic serfs and pretty girls, they questioned Lavrushka about Napoleon and laughed at his stories, and raced one another to try Ilyin's horse.
They knew that it was for the army to fight, and that if it could not succeed it would not do to take young ladies and house serfs to the Three Hills quarter of Moscow to fight Napoleon, and that they must go away, sorry as they were to abandon their property to destruction.
The peasants and house serfs carrying out the things were treading heavily on the parquet floors.
An enormous crowd of factory hands, house serfs, and peasants, with whom some officials, seminarists, and gentry were mingled, had gone early that morning to the Three Hills.
As to the serfs the only indication was that three out of their huge retinue disappeared during the night, but nothing was stolen; and as to the value of their possessions, the thirty peasant carts that had come in from their estates and which many people envied proved to be extremely valuable and they were offered enormous sums of money for them.
At first he watched the serfs, trying to understand their aims and what they considered good and bad, and only pretended to direct them and give orders while in reality learning from them their methods, their manner of speech, and their judgment of what was good and bad.
Only when he had understood the peasants' tastes and aspirations, had learned to talk their language, to grasp the hidden meaning of their words, and felt akin to them did he begin boldly to manage his serfs, that is, to perform toward them the duties demanded of him.
He disliked having anything to do with the domestic serfs--the "drones" as he called them--and everyone said he spoiled them by his laxity.
His means increased rapidly; serfs from neighboring estates came to beg him to buy them, and long after his death the memory of his administration was devoutly preserved among the serfs.
The house was spacious and had rooms for the house serfs and apartments for visitors.
As a result, he was registered under the name of one of his father 's serfs.
The Muslims who remained were forced to become the serfs agricultural slaves of Russian lords.
So the Czar would create revolution and free the serfs - Better from above than from below.
Medieval Serfs were expected to work for approximately 3 days each week on the lord 's land.
Everyone knows (or thinks they know) what serfs and lords and kings and minstrels are.
The serfs, whose wrongs seldom attracted notice in an age indifferent to the claims of common humanity, found a friend in this severe monarch, and he protected even the despised and persecuted Jews.
The service was usually discharged by slaves and serfs, but the amelu (and perhaps the muskinu) went to war.
Un homme d'etat russe (1884) gave the history of the emancipation of the serfs by Alexander II.
This was changed in consequence of the emancipation of the serfs.
Up to 1861, the date of the emancipation, the peasant serfs had been under the patrimonial jurisdiction of their lords.
Half of them were formerly serfs (10,447,149 males in 1858) - the remainder being " state peasants " (9,194,891 males in 1858, exclusive of the Archangel government) and " domain peasants " (842,740 males the same year).
This act liberated the serfs from a yoke which was really terrible, even under the best landlords, and from this point of view it was obviously an immense benefit.2 But it was far from securing corresponding economic results.
The redemption was not calculated on the value of the allotments of land, but was considered as a compensation for the loss of the compulsory labour of the serfs; so that throughout Russia, with the exception of a few provinces in the S.E., it was - and still remains, notwithstanding a very great increase in the value of land - much higher than the market value of the allotment.
On the other hand, since 1861, and more especially since 1882, when the Peasant Land Bank was founded for making advances to peasants who were desirous of purchasing land, the former serfs, or rather their descendants, have between 1883 and 1904 bought about 19,500,000 acres from their former masters.
The registered Cossacks objected to being placed under a Hetman not freely chosen by themselves, and those who were not included in the militia objected still more strongly to the prospect of being reduced to the miserable condition of Polish serfs.
The great estates of the Church, on which were settled about a million serfs, were secularized and assimilated with the state-domains.
To conciliate them she greatly extended the area of serfage by making large grants of land and serfs to courtiers and public servants who had specially distinguished themselves.
She waited, however, until a deputation of the malcontents, who regretted the loss of liberum veto and who were afraid that the party of reform might undertake the emancipation of the serfs, came to St Petersburg and asked for support in defence of the ancient liberties.
There is nothing to be found in Tusser about serfs or bondmen, as in Fitzherbert's works.
At the latter date besides seventy-three villeins, bordars and serfs there were forty cervisarii, a species of unfree tenants who rendered their custom in the form of beer.
In the 18th century we find the distinction between the three classes named above effaced and all of them merged in the class of serfs, who were the property either of the landed proprietors or of the state.
Peter the Great imposed a poll-tax on all the members of the rural population, making the proprietors responsible for the tax charged on their serfs; and the " free wandering people " who were not willing to enter the army were required to settle on the land either as members of a commune or as serfs of some proprietor.
The serfs were bought, sold, and given in presents, sometimes with the land, sometimes without it, sometimes in families and sometimes individually, sale by public auction being alone forbidden, as " unbecoming in a European state."
The proprietors could transport without trial their unruly serfs to Siberia or send them to the mines for life, and those who presented complaints against their masters were punished with the knout and condemned to the mines.
He issued an ukase that the serfs should not be forced to work for their masters more than three days in each week.
In the Lithuanian provinces the relations of the masters and serfs were regulated in the time of Nicholas by what were called inventories.
This number does not include the state serfs, who formed about one-half of the rural population.
Amongst them were the serfs on the lands formerly belonging to the church, which had been secularized and transformed into state demesnes by Catherine II.
There were also serfs on the apanages affected to the use of the imperial family; these amounted to nearly three and a half millions.
Below him ranked the newly converted Moslem aristocracy, who adopted the dress, titles and etiquette of the Turkish court, without relinquishing their language or many of their old customs. They dwelt in fortified towns or castles, where the vali was only admitted on sufferance for a few days; and, at the outset, they formed a separate military caste, headed by 48 kapetans - landholders exercising unfettered authority over their retainers and Christian serfs, but bound, in return, to provide a company of mounted troops for the service of their sovereign.
Hurry off and tell Maksim, the gardener, to set the serfs to work.
A fort was erected here in the 16th century to prevent the incursions of the free Cossacks and runaway serfs who gathered on the lower Volga, as also the raids of the Kalmucks and Circassians.
On the great estates in Assyria and its subject provinces were many serfs, mostly of subject race, settled captives, or quondam slaves, tied to the soil they cultivated and sold with the estate but capable of possessing land and property of their own.
There is little trace of serfs in Babylonia, unless the muskinu be really a serf.
By these measures the counts became citizens, the rural population ceased to rank as serfs, and the Italo-Roman population of the towns absorbed into itself the remnants of Franks, Germans and other foreign stocks.
At one moment the idea of emancipating all the serfs was entertained, but the project was speedily abandoned, because it would have alienated the nobles - the only class on which Catherine could rely for support.