Tanistry

Tan"ist*ry

(?), n. [See Tanist.] In Ireland, a tenure of family lands by which the proprietor had only a life estate, to which he was admitted by election.
[1913 Webster]

The primitive intention seems to have been that the inheritance should descend to the oldest or most worthy of the blood and name of the deceased. This was, in reality, giving it to the strongest; and the practice often occasioned bloody feuds in families, for which reason it was abolished under James I.
[1913 Webster]

 

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Tue 18th December 2018