villainage

Definitions

  • WordNet 3.6
    • n villainage the legal status or condition of servitude of a villein or feudal serf
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n villainage The condition of a villain or peasant.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • ns Villainage in feudal times, the tenure of land by villein, i.e. base or menial services
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Etymology

Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Orig. 'a serf attached to a farm,' O. Fr. villain—Low L. villanus—L. villa.

Usage

In literature:

Men had been freed from villainage in individual cases by various means.
"An Introduction to the Industrial and Social History of England" by Edward Potts Cheyney
Bracton and his followers lay down quite distinctly that their tenure is villainage though privileged villainage.
"Villainage in England" by Paul Vinogradoff
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