A Dictionary of the English Language
                        A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson
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View Scan · View Transcription · from pages 1256, 1257

View Scan · View Transcription · from pages 1256, 1257

Manor. n.s. [manoir, old French; manerium, low Latin; maner, Armorick.]

Manor signifies, in common law, a rule or government which a man hath over such as bold land within his fee. Touching the original of these manors, it seems, that, in the beginning, there was a certain compass or circuit of ground granted by the king to some men of worth, for him and his heirs to dwell upon, and to exercise some jurisdiction, more or less, within that compass, as he thought good to grant; performing him such services, and paying such yearly rent for the same, as he by his grant required: and that afterward this great man parcelled his land to other meaner men, injoining them again such services and rents as he thought good; and by that means, as he became tenant to the king, so the inferiours became tenants to him: but those great men, or their posterity, have alienated these mansions and lands so given them by their prince, and many for capital offences have forfeited them to the king; and thereby they still remain in the crown, or are bestowed again upon others. But whosoever possesses these manors, the liberty belonging to them is real and predial, and therefore remains, though the owners be changed. In these days, a manor rather signifies the jurisdiction and royalty incorporeal, than the land or site: for a man may have a manor in gross, as the law terms it, that is, the right and interest of a court-baron, with the perquisites thereto belonging. Cowel.

My parks, my walks, my manors that I had,
Ev'n now forsake me; and of all my lands
Is nothing left me.
Shakespeare's Henry VI.

                        Kinsmen of mine,
By this so sicken'd their estates, that never
They shall abound as formerly. O many
Have broke their backs with laying manors on them
For this great journey.
Shakespeare's Rich. II.

Sources: Cowell, John (42) · Shakespeare's Henry VI, Part 3 (39) · Shakespeare's Richard II (40)

Attributes: Armoric (1) · French (385) · Latin (690) · Noun Substantive (1269)

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Cite this page: Johnson, Samuel. "Manor." A Dictionary of the English Language: A Digital Edition of the 1755 Classic by Samuel Johnson. Edited by Brandi Besalke. Last modified: September 13, 2013. https://johnsonsdictionaryonline.com/manor/.

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