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Secondly, it provided opportunity for advancement to many other families besides those of the principle earls.
Even if they never made the transition to earldom, many such families enjoyed great influence, as shown by frequent marriages with the first-tier nobility.
An extreme example is provided by King William's grants of more than 500 different manors to his half-brother Odo Bishop of Bayeux.
The process therefore also enabled the grantees to reward their own retainers with sub-grants of land, which led to a second wave of Norman immigrants who had not taken part in the conquest but who were subsequently rewarded for their loyalty during the absence of their masters at war in England.
A notable example is provided by the Tosny family (see the document NORMANDY NOBILITY).
The first post-conquest earldoms were Chester, Hereford, Huntingdon (with Northampton), Kent, Norfolk and Shrewsbury (Shropshire).
The more powerful grantees of land held the title earl [comes].
The complexity of this task implies the rapid implementation of a sophisticated bureaucracy.Although they acquired considerable power in the counties in which their main estates lay, during the immediate post-conquest period contemporary records rarely show titles such as "Earl of [county]", the territorial qualification being gradually applied over time.As late as 1161, Hawise, widow of William de Roumare Earl of Lincoln, described herself as "Hadewysia comitissa de Rumara".Whether or not the intention, it was certainly the result as the English earls were never able to concentrate their power in centralised counties in the same way as, for example, their French or German counterparts.Another result of the decentralised nature of land grants was the slow emergence of territorial epithets attached to titles.
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Few earldoms were created during the post-conquest period.