manor. 1. A feudal estate, usu. granted by the king to a lord or other high person and cultivated as a unit. • In more ancient times, the lord’s manor included a village community, usu. composed of serfs.
“[T]o ask for a definition of a manor is to ask for what can not be given. We may however draw a picture of a typical manor, and, this done, we may discuss the deviations from this type …. [W]e may regard the typical manor (1) as being, qua vill, a unit of public law, of police and fiscal law, (2) as being a unit in the system of agriculture, (3) as being a unit in the management of property, (4) as being a jurisdictional unit. But we … see that hardly one of these traits can be considered as absolutely essential. The most important is the connection between the manor and the vill ….” 1 Frederick Pollock & Frederic W. Maitland, The History of English Law Before the Time of Edward I 596–97 (2d ed. 1898).
“The term [manor] applied, after the Norman conquest, to estates organized under knights, ecclesiastical corporations, or otherwise, and managed and cultivated as units. By the end of the 11th century, the main element was the feudal lord, and soon he came to be regarded as the owner of the manor, and to have authority over the tenants, and the right to hold a court for them …. In the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, a manor also implied a right of jurisdiction exercised through a court baron, attended by both freeholders and villein tenants …. In the eighteenth century the manorial court decayed rapidly, cases being generally brought in the King’s courts, the only surviving business being copyhold conveyancing.” David M. Walker, The Oxford Companion to Law 803 (1980).
reputed manor.A manor in which the demesne lands and services become absolutely separated. • The manor is no longer a manor in actuality, only in reputation. — Also termed seigniory in gross.
2. A jurisdictional right over tenants of an estate, usu. exercised through a court baron. See COURT BARON. 3.Hist. In the United States, a tract of land occupied by tenants who pay rent to a proprietor. 4. A mansion on an estate.
[Blacks Law 8th]