fief

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fief:

see feudalismfeudalism
, form of political and social organization typical of Western Europe from the dissolution of Charlemagne's empire to the rise of the absolute monarchies. The term feudalism is derived from the Latin feodum,
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.

fief

See FEUDALISM.

Fief

 

(also feud or fee), in Western Europe during the Middle Ages, a payment in land or in money or in kind made by a suzerain to his vassal (seeVASSALAGE). The hereditary tenure of a fief was conditional upon the vassal’s fulfillment of feudal service to his lord; this service was primarily military but could also entail service at court, such as participation in trials or in the management of a seigniory, or involve the payment of a sum fixed by custom. The vassals, in turn, usually gave part of their lands or income to their own vassals, a practice known as subinfeudation; eventually, a hierarchy was established on a single landholding, which could support a vertical series of feudal tenants.

The fief, whose precursor was the benefice, was the characteristic form of property of the ruling class in Western Europe from the 11th to 15th century, the period of developed feudalism. From this period, however, the system based on the fief began to decline. The fiefs were broken up through subinfeudation and, as commodity-money relations became prevalent, so did the use of money-fiefs, the right to some type of revenue, granted to a vassal instead of land with serfs. In addition, the feudal lords began relying on paid troops for military support. By the 15th or 16th centuries, the system of fiefs had become a legal fiction.

fief

In feudal England, the tenure of land or an estate subject to the feudal obligation of service and homage to the lord of the estate.

fief

, feoff
(in feudal Europe) the property or fee granted to a vassal for his maintenance by his lord in return for service
References in periodicals archive ?
They've accused HRH of treating it like a private fiefdom.
Less than two years ago, Florida's state-funded child advocacy system consisted of an uncoordinated system of 21 fiefdoms," Glynn wrote to the NACC Awards Committee June 30.
Adapted with permission from The Fiefdom Syndrome: The Turf Battles That Undermine Careers and Companies--And How to Overcome Them (Currency/Doubleday).
Blacks know all too well those fiefdoms are found coast to coast.
The transformation took a notorious turn when it became the crime capital of Gujarat -- the fiefdom of mafia leader Sarman Munja and then his wife Santokben Jadeja.
For anyone of my vintage his was the All-Seeing Eye and Cardiff his personal fiefdom.
Sir John Hall claimed the North East is treated like a fiefdom by Labour >
The church is God's people, not a corporation of executives or a medieval fiefdom.
Lib Dem MP John Hemming said: "The question about Fred Goodwin's management of RBS is whether it was managed in stakeholders' interests or run as a personal fiefdom.
ISLAMABAD, December 02, 2010 (Balochistan Times): Former PM Benazir Bhuttos trusted companions senator Safdar Abbasi and Naheed Khan have said President Asif Ali Zardari is non serious in probing the investigation of Benazir Bhuttos murder and he wants to make the party his personal fiefdom .
The Congress is not someone's fiefdom and many people have been working for the Congress for more than 40 years.
Its latest report lifts the lid on the nefarious practice, apparently common among supermarkets, of naming their fresh ranges thinks like Happy Comfort Wellness Farm rather than Cage of Doom or Sprawling Fiefdom of Impoverished Serfs.