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formalized private warfare, especially between family groups. The blood feud (see vendettavendetta
[Ital.,=vengeance], feud between members of two kinship groups to avenge a wrong done to a relative. Although the term originated in Corsica, the custom has also been practiced in other parts of Italy, in other European countries, and among the Arabs.
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) is characteristic of those societies in which a strong central government either has not arisen or has decayed. In modern times the feud, outlawed in most countries, has persisted where public justice cannot be easily enforced and private means are a simpler recourse. A famous example is the 19th-century feud of the Hatfields and McCoys in the mountain regions of the southern United States. The frontier in U.S. history was also characterized by private justice and the feud.


See Waller, A. L., Feud: Hatfields, McCoys, and Social Change in Appalachia, 1860–1900 (1988).


relations of continuing mutual hostility between groups where one group has been wronged by the other (e.g. one of its number has been murdered) and retribution is sought. Usually different LINEAGE groups or clans are involved. Feuding relationships occur in situations of kin solidarity, in which an individual can rely on support from relatives. They occur particularly in societies (e.g. SEGMENTARY SOCIETIES) which lack central political or legal authority, but where the fear of being involved in a feud acts as a major deterrent against wrongdoing. A retaliatory killing may end a feud, but other resolutions, such as the payment of compensation, may also bring it to an end.


, feod
Feudal law land held in return for service
References in periodicals archive ?
Detectives said the shooting is potentially linked to the murder of security boss Paul Massey, 55, in Salford in June and a feud between rival gangs in the Swinton and central Salford area of the city which has so far seen at least five shootings.
TIMERGARA -- local jirga settled a blood feud at Sam Paty Asbanr that changed enmity into friendship on Tuesday.
Blood feuds are chains of revenge murders between two families that might start over the smallest of conflicts and continue on for decades.
CAIRO: An Egyptian security official says a Canadian tourist who was caught up in a family feud has died of his wounds.
This is how feuds have escalated in Limerick and we don't want this to be the case here in Ballinasloe.
Oftentimes, there would have been some sort of tacit agreements between the leaders of the warring clans that would have assured the continuation of the feuds on the expense of everybody else's security.
Hellman, author of several popular science books, reveals the details behind some of the greatest feuds in mathematics and the intrigue and betrayal that resulted.
A feud which becomes particularly bitter when Romeo of the Montagues finds true love with Juliet of the Capulets.
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In the immortal Bard's tragedy of that most famous of family feuds, ``Romeo and Juliet,'' the prince rightly lays blame at the feet of both families who created and escalated the animosity and inflamed the rest of the population to take bitterly opposing sides.
I have seen my fair share of Ayrshire family feuds and you need to stay out of this one or you will go to prison.
Family feuds extend well past immediate family members to the farthest reaches of the past in the Albanian culture, even when transplanted to another country.