“The Last American Seigneur” – George Mentz Seigneur of Fief Blondel
Here is an interesting legal story which is a lesson in ancient international civil law. Every few years, there is a sale of the rights to Ancient Fiefs (Feudal Fiefs). At an special auction, Counselor Mentz won the bidding and was able to secure ancient Seigniorial Fief Rights. A noble count recently transferred his ancient feudal title over to George Mentz in the Royal Courts of the Bailiwick of Guernsey. By acquisition of the heritable title, you then have a registered ownership of the territory of the fief and a property right to style yourself as a Dame or Seigneur under the Norman laws of the Bailiwick of Guernsey.
The Fief de Thomas Blondel of the “Norman Channel Island of Guernsey” is somewhere between 840 years old and 579 years old depending on how you date the grant of the Ancient Norman Fief. The Seigneury of the Fief Blondel is a small feudal-fiefdom of noble history originally included in the grants to “Rollo the Famous Viking and 1st Duke of Normandy” by Grant of “Charles I” of France to prevent further invasions and sackings of France. By 1205, England had lost most of its French lands, including Normandy. However, the Channel Islands, part of the lost Duchy, remained a self-governing possession of the English Crown.
The Fief of Blondel’s territorial boundaries are located in the Southwest portion of Guernsey Island. While the islands today retain autonomy in government, they owe allegiance to The Queen in her role as Duke of Normandy. Guernsey is not a part of the UK nor the EU; however, Guernsey is a Crown Dependency maintaining its own ancient feudal laws which have a great Viking, English, and French history. Much like Louisiana in the USA where Mr. Mentz attended law school, Guernsey has a multifaceted mix of French and English Law.
The Fief is composed of a scattered territory on the island including several beach areas that constitute a tiny feudal “French baronnie“ or fiefdom. To acquire the Ancient Feudal Norman Fief, a buyer’s lawyers must go to Royal Court and pay the fees of: Conge or Treizième duty direct to the Crown while paying other fees to the HM Greffier /Greffe (Clerk’s) fees, and Jurats fees. This is done to obtain (HM) Her Majesty’s Royal Court’s conveyance permit and registration.
The Fief Blondel is held directly from the Crown historically as a free and noble fief and actually contains within it a dependency Fief called the Fief a Eperon. The territory of the Fief lies in both St Peter-in-the-Wood and Torteval Counties or Parishes of the Island of Guernsey.
The Fief of Blondel has a special history as the legend states that King Richard I was jailed in Germany at the old Castle Dürnstein and held for ransom in 1192 AD. Later, a Troubadour named Blondel found and helped release King Richard to freedom. To this day, the legend stands that the King awarded the Blondel family the Island’s Blondel Fief.
Other interesting history is that the citizen’s and Seigneurs of the Fiefs of Guernsey held the privilege of neutrality from the Vatican Papal Bull by Pope Sixtus from about the year 1483. The Papal Bull may still be effective today. The Papal Bull says that anyone who harms an islander would be excommunicated. Further, Guernsey is one of the few UK crown possessions occupied and fortified by Germany during WWII and later liberated by the Allies.
The other fascinating aspect of the “Fief de Thomas Blondel” is that it contains a few areas of beachhead and foreshore. To this day, international law and custom of the Channel Islands states that the Feudal Lord of the Fief or “The Seigneur” still has ownership rights to shorelines, seasted, accretion, fishing, treasure, shipwrecks adjacent to their fiefs, and even seaweed rights. One recent case paid the Seigneur and investors 10 Million pounds for foreshore development rights.
The Fief also comes with the ancient customary right to conduct feudal courts on small disputes. The Fief also comes also with a dinner to be provided by the rulers of a neighboring and famous Fief of Lihou. Since the status of Seigneur has been abolished in France for over 200 years, The Crown Dependency of Guernsey is one of the few places in the world where noble titles may exist and the legal status of a Fief & the legal rights to be Styled a Dame or Seigneur are still protected.
George Mentz JD MBA CILS is an international lawyer and law professor for over 20 years. He is also a Commissioner for the Presidential Scholars Program in the USA. Mentz has dedicated his life to teaching and helping the most vulnerable. Mentz is an award winning professor and author. Mentz has taught over 250 courses in the last 20 years and founded accredited certification programs which allow people who take exams and courses from accredited institutions such as Yale and Stanford or the University of Colorado to earn board certifications in business.
The Feudal Dues Law of 1980 Guernsey still allows by law an owner of a Fief to be Styled a Seigneur. See Law: http://www.guernseylegalresources.gg/CHttpHandler.ashx?id=71301&p=0 There is no fealty or allegiance requirements of such a fief, but there remains great courtesy and respect from any fief owner to the Duke of Normany.
When acquiring a feudal title, it is always best to hire great lawyers who have skills in various languages as this Fief was registered in the French language under the ancient customs of local lawyers and of Normandy. https://www.collascrill.com/news/updates/guernsey-property-update-february/
To view the Historical Fiefs of Guernsey on a Map, there was a digital map created recently: http://fiefs.digimap.gg/ To this day, when regular Guernsey property is registered, the description of the transfer would still contain the Fief name in which the property resides.
See Guernsey Fief Maps https://www.arcgis.com/apps/Viewer/index.html?appid=b72b10ff812b4f58a2895a08b8d10cb1