- villain tenant came to hold “by custom of the manor”; their rights were set worth on manorial records and copy given to the tenant
3. Feudal Incidents-
a tenant owed other duties and was subject to several liabilities benefiting his lord. These incidents gave the landlord possession of the land or its equivalent and kept pace with inflation and maintained their value.
a. Homage and Fealty-
binding man to man. Military tenant, knelt, put his hands between the lord’s hands, and swore a binding oath of loyalty, and thereby became the lord’s man. When a man gave his allegiance to the king, he deserved the king’s protection in a dispute with his lord.
lord could demand aid from his tenant in a financial emergency by: (1) the ransoming of the lord from his captors, (2) the knighting of his eldest son, (3) the marriage of his eldest daughter.
if a tenant breached his oath of loyalty or refused to perform feudal services, his land was forfeited to the lord. If tenant were guilty of high treason, the king was entitled to seize and keep the tenant’s land, whether held from the king or a mense lord.
d. Liabilities at Death of Tenant
guardianship of a person, usually a minor
control over marriage of a female or male.
( death tax) when a tenant died, the heir had to pay the lord an appropriate sum to come into his inheritance
reversion of property to the state upon the death of an owner who has neither a will nor any legal heirs.
4. Avoidance of Taxes (i.e. Feudal Incidents)5. Statute Quia Emptores (1290)
dispensed of the mesne lordships
B. The Fee Simple –
tenant status was either tenant for the fee or tenant for life
1. How the Fee Simple Developed
a. Rise of Heritability
- land was not owned by the possessor but was held by the possessor as tenant of someone else.
- Because of the highly personal nature of the lord-tenant relationship the tenant’s holding could not be inherited by his heir; in effect
- the tenant had only lifetime tenure.
- Upon the tenants death his time on the land ceased, and the lord was under no obligation to recognize the tenant’s heir as his successor.
b. Rise of Alienability
- AT FIRST, the fee was not freely alienable inter vivos and was not devisable by will
- the idea that a tenant should be able to convey the fee to another during his life openly and without the lord’s consent began to gain currency
- by the end of the 13th century- Quia Emporteres settled that the fee was freely alienable
- fee simple
- an interest in land that, being the broadest property interest allowed by law, endures until the current holder dies without heirs.