Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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(756 words)

1. Definition

The term enclosure denotes the allocation of agricultural land formerly worked in common to individual property owners and the associated transformation of the English countryside by the erection of fences, walls, and hedges, along with the layout of new roads and paths. Enclosure also superseded tithes;  the beneficiaries were compensated with land.

2. History

In England enclosure began in the late Midle Ages; in the southern Midlands, by th…

Cite this page
Häberlein, Mark, “Enclosure”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 03 February 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_COM_018753>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20170626

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