What is ENFRANCHISEMENT?

The act of making free; giving a franchise or freedom to;investiture with privileges or capacities of freedom, or municipal or political liberty.Admission to the freedom of a city; admission to political rights, and particularly theright of suffrage. Anciently, the acquisition of freedom by a villein from his lord.The word is now used principally either of the manumission of slaves, (q. v.,) ofgiving to a borough or other constituency a right to return a member or members toparliament, or of the conversion of copyhold into freehold. Mozley & Whitley.

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