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Manor

mansion, lands, dale, seigniory, subinfeudation and land

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MANOR (Maneriuni). At the time of the Norman conquest msnerius or manerium (from =sere, to dwell) de noted a large mansion or dwelling. The " manerium" of the Exchequer Domesday is the "mansio" of the Exeter Domesday, each being therefore the equivalent of the Anglo-Saxon or French term used by the officers who made the survey. In France the corresponding word " manoir" has never acquired any other signification than that of a mansion ; and an estate possessing the peculiar incidents of an English manor never became so common in France as to require a specific name.

The modern English manor derives its origin from subinfeudation [FEUDAL Sva TEm], as it existed before the modifica tions of the system of tenures introduced in 1225 by Magna Charts, and the still more important alterations made in 1290 by "The King's Statute of buying and selling Lands," commencing with the words " Quia Emptores Terrarum," and in 1324 by the statute De Prterogativlk Regis,' by which statutes, the process of subinfeudation, or of granting land in fee-simple, to be held by the grantee as a tenant or vassal to the grantor, was stopped.

Where a subinfeudation made by A to B extended to the whole of A's land, no thing remained in A but a seigniory with the ordinary feudal incidents of tenure, together with such rents or other services as might have been reserved upon the creation of the subtenure. This interest in A was a seigniory in gross, that is, a seigniory held by itself, unattached to any land, an incorporeal seigniory, termed by the French feudists "an fief ex l'air." lint in the case of subinfeudation of part of the land, the ordinary mode of pro ceeding was this :—A, a large proprietor, having a mansion and laud at Dale, cre ated a subtenure in a portion of his land by granting such portion to B and his heirs, to hold of A and his heirs, as of A's manerium (mansion) of Dale, which words created an implied condition that B should perform the service of attend ing, with the other tenants of A holding by virtue of similar subinfendations, at A's halmote of Dale, that is, at A's court meeting in the hall of A's mansion at Dale (afterwards called A's court•baron of his manor of Dale), for the purpose of deciding judicially all disputes among A's free tenants holding of him by the same tenure as B, in respect of their lands so holden, and also all actions brought by persons claiming such lands.

Upon this subinfeudation being effected, A would continue to be the owner of the mansion of Dale, and of that part of the land of Dale, of which he had made no subinfeudation, in demesne (in dominico suo,)---as his own immediate property ; and he would have the seigniory of lands of which B and others had been sub infeoffed, as a seigniory appendant or legally annexed to the mansion of Dale, and to the demesnes of Dale, of which the mansion formed part.

This conjoint or complex estate, taking its denomination from the mansion (ma nerium), which was considered as its head, and which, in the language of the Year Book of P. 14, Edward II. (May nard, 426), to itself all the appen dancies," by degrees acquired the name of Manerium or Manor.

A Manor therefore originally consisted of lands in demesne, upon which the lord had a mansion, and to which lands and mansion, and more especially to the latter, there was appendant a seigniory over freeholders qualified in respect of quantity of estate (i. e. by a tenancy for life at the least, if not a tenancy in fee simple), and sufficient in point of number to constitute a court-baron. These free holders were called vavasors, and their lands "tenemental lands," i. e. lands granted out in tenure, to distinguish them from the lord's demesnes. These tenements) lands, anciently known by the denomination of vavassories, though held of the manor and within the seigniory (or, as it was usually termed, within the fee) of the lord, were not considered as part of the manor ; but the services issu ing from such tenemental lands were part of the manor and essential to its existence.

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