Manors are the atomic units of Domesday Book, the smallest discrete elements.
Manors bore the names of the vills in which they lay. Vills were administrative units; manors were units of ownership. Manors came in many shapes and sizes, and some manors were more manorial than others. As with many Domesday terms, manor might have a general or a particular meaning. As a general term, a manor is simply a separate Domesday entry, the sense in which it is used here.
The most illuminating account of the many types of Domesday manors remains that of F.W. Maitland, Domesday Book and beyond (1897); R. Welldon Finn, An introduction to Domesday Book (1863), is the fullest of more recent accounts. The relationship of vills to manors, and the problems that the Domesday record poses in interpreting this relationship, is clearly set out by H.C. Darby, Domesday England (1977).