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NORMANS IN EUROPEAN HISTORY

France. There was, it is true, no sudden change. Philip respected vested interests, both in the church and among the barons, and preserved Norman customs, so that the duchy long retained its individuality of law, of local organization, and of character, and secured its rights from Louis X in a document of 1315, the Charte aux Normands, which has sometimes been compared in a small way to the Great Charter. The Coutume de Normandie persisted, like the customs of the other great provinces, until the French Revolution, but it was a body of custom worked out under the influence of the central government and gradually absorbing the jurisprudence of the king's court. If the Norman exchequer continued to sit at Rouen, it was presided over by commissioners sent out from Paris. Even that most characteristic of Norman institutions, trial by jury, was insensibly modified by the new inquisitorial procedure of the thirteenth century and silently disappeared from the practice of the Continent. As in law and government, so in culture and social life, the forces of centralization did their work none the less effectively because they were gradual, and Normandy became a part of France.

There was, it is true, a period when Normandy was once more united to England, this time as a conquered country. Between 1417 and 1419 Henry V subdued Normandy in a series of well-conducted campaigns, and he and his son remained in possession of the duchy un-