A deed is a writing in proper and efficient words conveying absolutely title to or an interest in realty. It is the instrument by which the transfer of title is effected. Every contract of sale or for exchange, and the terms of sale in an auction sale provide for the final consummation of the transaction by delivery of a deed. Anciently ownership of land was transferred symbolically by delivery in the presence of witnesses, by the seller to the purchaser of a clod of earth from the land. For many years and at the present time the transfer is accomplished by delivery of a deed and surrender of possession.