There were no provincial assemblies, no municipal bodies, no merchant-gilds, no autonomous churches; the people had no means of making themselves heard; they had no place in an administration which was completely in the hands of a central hierarchy of officials of all ranks, from dukes to scabini, with counts, viscounts and centenarii in between.
Sir Maurice Berkeley of Bruton, a cadet of Stoke Giffard, was forefather of the Viscounts Fitzhardinge, the Lords Berkeley of Stratton (1658-1773) and the earls of Falmouth, all extinct, the Berkeleys of Stratton bequeathing their great London estate, including Berkeley Square and Stratton Street, to the main line.
His grandson William, on succeeding to the Orchard Portman and Bryanston estates, took the additional name of Portman, and from him come the Viscounts Portman of Bryanston (1873).
It passed from the possession of the viscounts of Marseilles to Charles of Anjou, count of Provence, and brother of St Louis (the latter landed here in 1254, on his return from Egypt).
From about 81 9 to 1082 Carcassonne formed a separate countship, and from the latter date till 1247 a viscountship. Towards the end of the 11th century the viscounts of Carcassonne assumed the style of viscounts of Beziers, which town and its lords they had dominated since the fall of the Carolingian empire.