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HOMAGE Definition & Legal Meaning

Definition & Citations:

In feudal law. A service (or the ceremony of rendering it) which a tenantwas bound to perform to his lord on receiving investiture of a fee, or succeeding to it asheir, in acknowledgment of the tenure. It is described by Littleton as the mosthonorable service of reverence that a free tenant might do to his lord. The ceremonywas as follows: The tenant, being ungirt and with bare head, knelt before the lord,the latter sitting, and held his hands extended and joined between the hands of thelord, and said: “I become your man [homo] from this day forward, of life and limb andearthly honor, and to you will be faithful and loyal, and bear you faith, for thetenements that I claim to hold of you, saving the faith that I owe unto our sovereignlord the king, so help me God.” The tenant then received a kiss from the lord. Homagecould be done only to the lord himself. Litt.


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