Life in Western Europe during the 9th through 10th century invasions
Life in Europe was strenuously difficult during the 9th-10th century because of the invasions from the Muslims, Magyars and Vikings. People were afraid to travel, commerce was almost non-existent and fine arts declined dramatically. The Kings were unable to protect their subjects from the invaders, which was clear when kings had to bribe them to not invade their kingdoms. The subjects knew this fact, so they turned to the nobles for protection against the invaders. In response to these circumstances, two systems called Feudalism and Manorialism were created to deal with the invaders.
Manorialism was when a lord would let the common people, called surfs, live on their land for protection from the invaders. In exchange for protection, the surfs cared for the land and paid a fee. Feudalism was when the lords would hire vassals, soldiers or knights to protect their land while they were away fighting the invaders. Peasants in this system were the only productive force that the lords had, so most of the economic pressure in Europe was put on the peasants. The lords and vassals did not have it easier either, since they had to battle the invaders to protect the surfs that were providing the limited economic productions. Things did eventually improve, as the invaders were finally defeated. When the invaders were defeated, the lords improved the Feudalism and Manorialism systems that were haphazardly emplaced which would become Europe’s governing system for centuries onwards.
During the 9th-10th century, living conditions in Western Europe were difficult because of the invasions. People were scared, food was scarce and people had to sacrifice freedom for protection just to survive. While the Feudalism and Manorialism systems were not perfect, it supported Europe while the lords were off fighting the invaders. If it were not for the Feudalism and Manorialism systems, Europe might have succumbed to domination by the Vikings, Muslims or Magyars.