a form of land tenure in Russia from the 17th to 19th centuries.
Chetvert’ holdings, which were hereditary and apportioned by family, were grants made by the state to groups of sluzhilye liudi (civil service class) in the 17th century and odnodvortsy (a category of state peasants) in the 18th and 19th centuries. Certain families were given a fixed number of chetverti, whose size varied according to the total land granted to the group. Especially widespread in the regions of the Belgorod line, chetvert’ holdings were the property of the state and could not be sold. In the mid-19th century more than 657,000 odnodvortsy, of a total of 1,190,000, held lands under chetvert’ law. Under a reform of 1866 that dealt with state peasants, chetvert’ holdings were recognized as the individual property of the peasants.
REFERENCESBlagoveshchenskii, N. A. Chetvertnoe pravo. Moscow, 1899.
Semevskii, V. M. Krest’iane v tsarstvovanie imperatritsy Ekateriny II, part 2. St. Petersburg, 1901.