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OF PROPERTY IN GENERAL. 1. All dominion over external objects has its original from the gift of the Creator to man in general..

.Page 2 2. The substance of things was, at first, common to all mankind; yet a temporary property in the use of them might even then be acquired and continued by occupancy:

3 3. In process of time a permanent property was established in the substance, as well as the use of things, which was also originally acquired by occupancy only 4, 5

4. Lest this property should determine by the owner's dereliction or death, whereby the shing would again become common, societies have established conveyances, wills, and heirships, in order to continue the property of the first occupant; and where by accident such property becomes discontinued or unknown, the thing usually results to the sovereign of the state, by virtue of the municipal law

9-11 5. But of some things, which are incapable of permanent substantial dominion, there still subsists only the same transient usufructuary property, which originally subsisted in all things


CHAPTER II. OF REAL PROPERTY; AND, FIRST, OF CORPOREAL HEREDITAMENTS. 1. In this property, or exclusive dominion, consist the rights of things; which are, I Things real. II. Things personal...

16 2. In things real may be considered, I. Their several kinds. II. The tenures by which they may be holden. III. The estates which may be acquired therein. IV. Their title, or the means of acquiring and losing them..

16 3. All the several kinds of things real are reducible to one of these three, viz., lands, tenements, or hereditaments; whereof the second includes the first, and the third inciudes the first and second...

.... 16 4. Hereditaments, therefore, or whatever may come to be inherited (being the most comprehensive denomination of things real), are either corporeal or incorporeal.. 17

5. Corporeal hereditaments consist wholly of lands, in their largest legal sense ; wherein they include not only the face of the earth, but every other object of sense adi-nany wereto, and subsisting either above or beneath it.

17, 18



1. INCORPOREAL hereditaments are rights issuing out of things corporeal, or concerning, or annexed to, or exercisable within the same.

20 2. Incorporeal hereditaments are, I. Advowsons. II. Tithes. III. Commons. IV. Ways. V. Offices. VI. Dignities. VII. Franchises. VIII. Corodies or pensions. IX. Annuities. X. Rents

21-41 3. An advowson is a right of presentation to an ecclesiastical benefice, either appendant or in gross. This may be, I. Presentative. II. Collative. III. Donative

21-23 4. Tithes are the tenth part of the increase yearly arising from the profits, and stock of lands, and the personal industry of mankind. These, by the ancient and positive law of the land, are due of common right to the parson, or (by endowment) to the

vicar; unless specially discharged, I. By real composition. II. By prescription, either
de modo decimandi, or de non decimando

.Page 24–31
5. Common is a profit which a man hath in the lands of another; being, I. Com-
mon of pasture ; which is either appendant, appurtenant, because of vicinage, or in
gross. II. Common of piscary. III. Common of turbary. IV. Common of esto-
vers, or botes...

32-35 6. Ways are a right of passing over another man's ground

35 7. Offices are the right to exercise a public or private employment

36 8. For dignities, which are titles of honor, see Book I., Ch. XII.

9. Franchises are a royal privilege, or branch of the king's prerogative, subsisting in the hands of a subject

37 10. Corodies are allotments for one's sustenance, which may be converted into pensions. (See Book I., Ch. VIII.). .

40 11. An annuity is a yearly sum of money, charged upon the person, and not upon the lands, of the grantor...

40 12. Rents are a certain profit issuing yearly out of lands and tenements; and are reducible to, I. Rent-service. II. Rent-charge. III. Rent-seck.

41, 42



1. The doctrine of tenures is derived from the feodal law, which was planted in Europe by its northern conquerors at the dissolution of the Roman Empire .. 44, 45

2. Pure and proper feuds were parcels of land allotted by a chief to his followers, to be held on the condition of personally rendering due military service to their lord 54

3. These were granted by investiture ; were held under the bond of fealty; were inheritable only by descendants; and could not be transferred without the mutual consent of the lord and vassal.

53-57 4. Improper feuds were derived from the other ; but differed from them in their original, their services and renders, their descent, and other circumstances. 58

5. The lands of England were converted into feuds, of the improper kind, soon after the Norman conquest; which gave rise to the grand maxim of tenure ; viz., that all lands in the kingdom are holden, mediately or immediately, of the king 48-53

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1. The distinction of tenures consisted in the nature of their services; as, I. Chivalry, or knight-service; where the service was free, but uncertain. II. Free socage; where the service was free, and certain. III. Pure villenage ; where the service was base, and uncertain. IV. Privileged villenage, or villein socage; where the service was base, but certain ..

61-78 2. The most universal ancient tenure was that in chivalry, or by knight-service; in which the tenant of every knight's fee was bound, if called upon, to attend his lord to the wars. This was granted by livery, and perfected by homage and fealty; which usually drew after them suit of court...

62 3. The other fruits and consequences of the tenure by knight-service w..<,! Aid. II. Relief. III. Primer seizin.

IV. Wardship V. Marriage.

VI. Fines upon alienation. VII. Escheat.

63-72 4. Grand sergeantry differed from chivalry principally in its render or service, and not in its fruits and consequences

73 5. The personal service in chivalry was at length gradually changed into pecuniary assessments, which were called scutage or escuage. .

74 6. These military tenures (except the services of grand sergeantry) were, at the restoration of King Charles, totally abolished, and reduced to free socage, by act of Parliament...





1. Free socage is a tenure by any free, certain, and determinate service.... 78

2. This tenure, the relic of Saxon liberty, includes petit sergeantry, tenure in burgage, and gavel-kind.



3. Free socage lands partake strongly of the feodal nature, as well as those in chivalry; being holden, subject to some service-at the least, to fealty and suit of court; subject to relief, to wardship, and to escheat, but not to marriage ; subject, also, formerly, to aids, primer seizin, and fines for alienation........

Page 86-89 4. Pure villenage was a precarious and slavish tenure, at the absolute will of the lord, upon uncertain services of the basest nature.

93 5. From hence, by tacit consent or encroachment, have arisen the modern copyholds, or tenure by copy of court roll; in which lands may be still held at the (nominal) will of the lord, (but regulated) according to the custom of the manor.

95 6. These are subject, like socage lands, to services, relief, and escheat ; and also to heriots, wardship, and fines upon descent and alienation.

... 97 7. Privileged villenage, or villein socage, is an exalted species of copyhold tenure, upon base, but certain, services ; subsisting only in the ancient demesnes of the crown; whence the tenure is denominated the tenure in ancient demesne...

99 8. These copyholds of ancient demesne have divers immunities annexed to their tenure; but are still held by copy of court roll, according to the custom of the manor, though not at the will of the lord..

100 9. Frankalmoign is a tenure by spiritual services at large, whereby many ecclesiastical and eleemosynary corporations now hold their lands and tenements; being of a nature distinct from tenure by divine service in certain.




1. Estates in lands, tenements, and hereditaments are such interest as the tenant hath therein; to ascertain which, may be considered, I. The quantity of interest. II. The time of enjoyment. III. The number and connections of the tenants.. 103–179

2. Estates, with respect to their quantity of interest or duration, are either freehold, or less than freehold

104 3. A freehold estate, in lands, is such as is created by livery of seizin at common law; or, in tenements of an incorporeal nature, by what is equivalent thereto.. 104

4. Freehold estates are either estates of inheritance or not of inheritance, viz., for life only; and inheritances are, I. Absolute, or fee-simple. II. Limited fees... 104

5. Tenant in fee-simple is he that hath lands, tenements, or hereditaments, to hold to him and his heirs forever

104 6. Limited fees are, I. Qualified, or base, fees. II. Fees conditional at the common law.

109 7. Qualified, or base, fees are those which, having a qualification subjoined thereto, are liable to be defeated when the qualification is at an end..

109 8. Conditional fees, at the common law, were such as were granted to the donee, and the heirs of his body, in exclusion of collateral heirs

110 9. Thes were held to be fees, granted on condition that the donee had issue of his body; which condition being once performed by the birth of issue, the donee might immediately aliene the land ; but the statute de donis being made to prevent such alienation, thereupon, from the division of the fee (by construction of this statute) into a particular estate and a reversion, the conditional fees began to be called feestail...

111, 112 10. All tenements real, or savoring of the reality, are subject to entails. 113

11. Estates-tail may be, I. General or special; II. Male or female ; III. Given in frank-marriage

113–115 12. Incident to estates-tail are, I. Waste. II. Dower. III. Courtesy. IV. Barby fine, recovery, or lineal warranty with assets

115 13. Estates-tail are now, by many statutes and resolutions of the courts, almost brought back to the state of conditional fees at the common law.



OF FREEHOLDS, NOT OF INHERITANCE. 1. FREEHOLDS, not of inheritance, or for life only, are, I. Conventional, or created by the act of the parties. II. Legal, or created by operation of law.

... 120 2. Conventional estates for life are created by an express grant for term of one's own life, or pur autre vie ; or by a general grant, without expressing any term at all..

.Page 120 3. Incident to this, and all other estates for life, are estovers, and emblements; and to estates pur autre vie general occupancy was also incident; as special occupancy still is, if cestuy que vie survives the tenant.

122 4. Legal estates for life are, I. Tenancy in tail, after possibility of issue extinct. II. Tenancy by the courtesy of England. III. Tenancy in dower".

124-128 5. Tenancy in tail, after possibility of issue extinct, is where an estate is given in special tail, and, before issue had, a person dies from whose body the issue was to spring; whereupon the tenant (if surviving) becomes tenant in tail, after possibility of issue extinct...

124 6. This estate partakes both of the incidents to an estate-tail and those of an estate for life.

125 7. Tenancy by the courtesy of England is where a man's wife is seized of an estate of inheritance, and he by her has issue, born alive, which was capable of inheriting her estate; in which case he shall, upon her death, hold the tenements for his own life, as tenant by the courtesy..

126 8. Tenancy in dower is where a woman's husband is seized of an estate of inheritance, of which her issue might by any possibility have been heir, and the husband dies: the woman is hereupon entitled to dower, or one third part of the lands and tenements, to hold for her natural life..

128 9. Dower is either by the common law; by special custom; ad ostium ecclesiæ ; or, ex assensu patris. . ,

132, 133 10. Dower may be forfeited, or barred; particularly by an estate in jointure. . 136




1. Estates less than freehold are, I. Estates for years. II. Estates at will. III. Estates at sufferance.

140-150 2. An estate for years is where a man, seized of lands and tenements, letteth them to another for a certain period of time, which transfers the interest of the term; and the lessee enters thereon, which gives him possession of the term, but not legal seizin of the land..

140 3. Incident to this estate are estovers; and also emblements, if it determines before the full end of the term...

144, 145 4. An estate at will is where lands are let by one man to another, to hold at the will of both parties, and the lessee enters thereon...

145 5. Copyholds are estates held at the will of the lord, (regulated) according to the custom of the manor

147 6. An estate at sufferance is where one comes into possession of land by lawful title, but keeps it afterward without any title at all




1. Estates (whether freehold or otherwise) may also be held upon condition ; in which case their existence depends on the happening or not happening of some uncertain event....

152 2. These estates are, I. On condition implied. II. On condition expressed. III. Estates in gage. IV. Estates by statute, merchant or staple. V. Estates by elegit 152

3. Estates on condition implied, are where the grant of an estate has, from its essence and constitution, a condition inseparably annexed to it, though none be expressed in words...

152 4. Estates on condition expressed, are where an express qualification or provision is annexed to the grant of an estate..

154 5. On the performance of these conditions, either expressed or implied (if precedent), the estate may be vested or enlarged; or, on the breach of them (if subsequent), an estate already vested may be defeated...

154, 155 6. Estates in gage, in vadio, or in pledge, are estates granted as a security for money lent; being I. In vivo vadio, or living gage; where the profits of lands are granted

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