Entails now barred by surrender.

Estate in fee simple.

(b) Stat. 3& 4 Will. IV. c.74; ante, p. 47. (c)j Sect. 50.

(d) See ante, p. 51.

(e) Sect. 51.

(f) Sect. 52.


Crown debts.

Judgment debts.

(g) 4 Rep. 22 a; 1 Watk. Copyholds, 140.

(h) Stat. 3 & 4 Will. IV. c. 104.

(i) See ante, p. 81; 1 Scriv. Copyholds, 60.

(j) Stat. 1 & 2 Vict. c. 110, s. 11.

(k) Stat. 2 & 3 Vict. c. 11, s. 5; ante, p. 84.

Copyholds are equally liable, with freeholds, to involuntary alienation on the bankruptcy of the tenant. The trustee for the creditors has now power to deal with any property of every description to which the bankrupt is beneficially entitled as tenant in tail, in the same manner as the bankrupt might have dealt with the same (n). And the Bankruptcy Act, 1869, provides that where any portion of the bankrupt's estate consists of copyhold or customary property, or any like property passing by surrender and admittance or in any similar manner, the trustee shall not be compellable to be admitted to such property, but may deal with the same in the same manner as if such property had been capable of being and had been duly surrendered or otherwise conveyed to such uses as the trustee may appoint; and any appointee of the trustee shall be admitted or otherwise invested with the property accordingly (o).

The descent of an estate in fee simple in copyholds is governed by the custom of descent which may happen to prevail in the manor; but, subject to any such custom, the provisions contained in the act for the amendment of the law of inheritance (p) apply to copyhold as well as freehold hereditaments, whatever be the customary course of their descent. As, in the case of freeholds, the lands of a person dying intestate descend at once to his heir (q), so the heir of a copyholder becomes, immediately on the decease of his ancestor, tenant of the lands, and may exercise any act of ownership before the ceremony of his admittance has taken place (r). But as between himself and the lord, he is not completely a tenant till he has been admitted.


Estates tail.

Trustee for creditors need not be admitted.

Descent of an estate in fee simple in copyholds.

(l) Stat. 23 & 24 Vict. c. 38, s. 1; ante, pp. 84, 85.

(m) Stat. 27 & 28 Vict. C. 112; ante, p. i

(n) Stat. 32 & 33 Vict. c. 71, s. 25, par.( 4), which embodies stat. 3 & 4 Will. IV. c 74, ss. 56 - 73.

(o) Stat. 32 & 33 Vict, c. 71, s. 22. The former statutes relating to this subject were stats. 12 & 13 Vict. c. 106, s. 209, and 24 25 Vict. c. 134, s.114.

(p) Stat. 3&4 Will. IV.c. 106.

The tenure of an estate in fee simple in copyholds involves, like the tenure of freeholds, an oath of fealty from the tenant (s), together with suit to the customary court of the manor. Escheat to the lord on failure of heirs is also an incident of copyhold tenure. And before the abolition of forfeiture for treason and felony (t) the lord of a copyholder had the advantage over the lord of a freeholder in this respect, that, whilst freehold lands in fee simple were forfeited to the crown by the treason of the tenant, the copyholds of a traitor escheated to the lord of the manor of which they were held (u). Rents (v) also of small amount are not unfrequent incidents of the tenure of copyhold estates. And reliefs (x) may, by special custom, be payable by the heir (y). The other incidents of copyhold tenure depend on the arbitrary customs of each particular manor; for this tenure, as we have seen (z), escaped the destruction in which the tenures of all freehold lands (except free and common socage, and frankalmoign) were involved by the act of 12 Car. II. c. 24.

A curious incident to be met with in the tenure of some copyhold estates is the right of the lord, on the death of a tenant, to seize the tenant's best beast, or other chattel, under the name of a heriot (a). Heriots appear to have been introduced into England by the Danes. The heriot of a military tenant was his arms and habiliments of war, which belonged to the lord, for the purpose of equipping his successor. And, in analogy to this feudal custom, the lords of manors usually expected that the best beast or other chattel of each tenant, whether he were a freeman or a villein, should on his decease be left to them (b). This legacy to the lord was visually the first bequest in the tenant's will (c); and, when the tenant died intestate, the heriot of the lord was to be taken in the first place out of his effects (d), unless, indeed, as not unfrequently happened, the lord seized upon the whole of the goods (e). To the goods of the villein he was indeed entitled, the villein himself being his lord's property. And from the difference between the two classes of freemen and villein has perhaps arisen the circumstance, that, whilst heriots from freeholders seldom occur (f), heriots from copyholders remain to this day, in many manors, a badge of the ancient servility of the tenure. But the right of the loi'd is now confined to such a chattel as the custom of the manor, grown into a law, will enable him to take (g). The kind of chattel which may be taken for a heriot varies in different manors. And in some cases the heriot consists merely of a money-payment.



Suit of court.


Rent. Belief.

(q) Ante, p. 93.

(r) 1 Scriv. Cop. 357; Right d. Taylor v. Banks, 3 Bar. & Ad. 664; King v. Turner, 1 My. & K. 456; Doe d. Perry v. Wilson, 5 Ad. & Ell. 321.

(s) 2 Scriv. Cop. 732.

(t) See ante, pp. 56, 122 etseq.

(u) Lord Cornwallis's case, 2 Ventr. 38; 1 Watk. Cop. 340; 1 Scriv. Cop. 522.

(v) Ante, p. 120.

(x) Ante, pp. 116, 118, 120.

(y) 1 Scriv. Cop. 436.

(z) Ante, p. 119.


(a) 1 Scriv. Cop. 437 et seq. (b) Bract. 86 a; 2 Black. Com. 423, 424.

(c) Bract. CO a; Fleta, lib. 2, cap. 57.