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What was life like as a peasant in medieval Europe? Because most peasants were illiterate, there is little record of peasant life as told by peasants themselves. Historians instead resort to legal sources to shed some light on the day-to-day life of peasants. One discovery was that, during the period of Manorialism – where peasants supported the landowning elite – there were early signs of unionism wherein the peasants protected their own, and ensured their fellowmen were not cheated by those they dealt with.
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