In 1087 the king held the manor of Wendover, and therefore it belonged to the ancient demesne of the crown.
If, however, the two conditions mentioned were forthcoming, villeins, or, as they were technically called, villein socmen of ancient demesne manors, could resist any attempt of their lords to encroach on their rights by depriving them of their holdings or increasing the amount of their customary services.
A material point for the application of the privilege consists in the fact that ancient demesne has to be proved from the time before the Conquest, and this shows clearly that the theory was partly derived from the recognition of tenant right in villeins of the Anglo-Saxon period who, as we have said above, were mostly ceorls, that is, freeborn men.
Confirmed to the burgesses a grant of freedom from toll on the ground that Walsall was ancient demesne of the Crown.
Land held in ancient demesne is sometimes also called customary freehold.
A number of cases arising from these privileges of the men of ancient demesne are published in the Notebook of Bracton and in the Abbreviatio placitorum.
The men of Lowestoft as tenants on ancient demesne of the crown possessed many privileges, but had no definite burghal rights until 1885.
Cirencester (Cirneceaster, Cyrenceaster, Cyringceaster) is described in Domesday as ancient demesne of the crown.
At the conquest Wimborne was a royal borough, ancient demesne of the crown, and part of the manor of Kingston Lacy, which Henry I.
Certainty and legal protection were so essential that even villain holdings were treated as villain socage when legal protection was obtainable for it, as was actually the case with the peasants on Ancient demesne who could sue their lords by the little writ of right and the Monstraverunt.