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About the Author, as written by his wife,

who knows him better than he does himself:

For a third of our life we sleep, and for the rest most of us are awake taking care of life.  Murray sleeps a fifth of the time, and for the other four fifths he takes care of work, finances, me, our children, and the heritage of England.  So I married a wonderful guy, a good father, a great provider … and English history, as far back as the 12th century.  Murray is passionate about his work, life, and so much else; he is one of a rare species – anything he starts he finishes.   Sooo – after several books about family history he started and finished two unique books covering 700 years of a medieval manor, the lives of its occupants, their struggles,  fights, executions, marriages, and – a huge part of life back then – their possessions, lands, interactions, and marriages of daughters for land and glory.  A fascinating look at their lifestyle though holding lands and manors.  One has to be unique to create such a book, which nobody else managed to do.  Murray’s structured mind allows him to see events, stories and life framed by the psychology of medieval economics, land ownership and the value of human life compared to possessions.  He proved in his own unique way that there is space for a new genre.  His two books about manors count on a reader’s intelligence, ability to observe and think.

A message from the Author:

Captivated by his family history in Watford, Northamptonshire, the author widened his curiosity to the story of the whole parish of three towns.  He researched the land and lives of those who ‘held’ manors and land there from the Norman Conquest through medieval times until the modern age.  I n all, about 700 years   including the unique 500 year story of the Ardern lordships.  This launched a fascinating journey discovering many age-old documents such as the Patent Rolls, the Fine Rolls, rulings of the king’s courts, as well as indentures, inquisitions, and other records, each detailing intriguing events bearing on parish lands.  Many of these exist within the backdrop of English medieval history, and all carried the unique flavour and characteristics of the time.  For most of his life, Murray has been interested in history.  This, together with a fascination for medieval documents that unravelled the mysteries of the manor system, became:

Give a Manor Take a Manor … The Rise and Decline of a Medieval Manor.

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