(In a feudal society) money paid by a vassal to his lord in lieu of military service.
- By the 13th cent. the arrangements were unravelling as lords increasingly paid scutage rather than perform knight service and vassals tried to commute their own obligations.
- Most of the head tenants and some of the under tenants held on condition of knight service, later commuted into a money payment in lieu of service called scutage.
- It was normally possible to make a payment, known as scutage or shield money, in place of performing feudal military service.
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