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entail

entail, in law, restriction of inheritance to a limited class of descendants for at least several generations. The object of entail is to preserve large estates in land from the disintegration that is caused by equal inheritance by all the heirs and by the ordinary right of free alienation (disposal) of property interests. Legal devices similar to entail were known in Roman law and in all the countries of Europe. In England the entail became common in the early 13th cent., and in its most usual form was a conveyance by a grantor (owner) of real property to a grantee and the "heirs of his body," i.e., his lawful offspring, in successive generations. In the inheritance the rule of primogeniture was observed. The subsequent development of the entail reflects a continuing struggle between the effort to preserve large estates and the need for free alienation. By the mid-13th cent. the courts interpreted the birth of a live baby as the satisfaction of a condition that vested the grantee with the power of alienation. This result was overcome by the statute De donis conditionalibus [conditional gifts] (1285), which gave effect to the grantor's intent. In time the grantee was able to get control of the property despite the statutory prohibition by use of the fine and other technical legal devices. Current English law permits the holder of entailed property (either real or personal) to dispose of it by deed; otherwise the entail persists. In the United States for the most part entails are either altogether prohibited or limited to a single generation.

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entail

entail. The growth of landed estates in England from the mid-16th cent. until the 1880s was partly a product of the system of ‘entailing’ property. Until the mid-17th cent., the available forms of entail were quite restricted, but thereafter the courts agreed to permit an owner to tie up his estate to the second and third generation, through a process of ‘contingent remainders’. The legal mechanisms were not dismantled until the 1880s and beyond. It was once held that as a result great estates were kept together, but modern research holds that the system of entailing property was introduced partly to protect the financial interests of younger children, that entailed estates could be partially or completely freed through either a common recovery or an Act of Parliament, and that the consolidation of estates was due to factors other than entail. As a result, more emphasis is now placed on the ability of landowners to borrow on the security of their property, and to service large mortgages over several generations, with entail seen as a vital element in family strategies.

John Beckett

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entail

en·tail • v. / enˈtāl/ [tr.] 1. involve (something) as a necessary or inevitable part or consequence: a situation that entails considerable risks. ∎  Logic have as a logically necessary consequence. 2. Law settle the inheritance of (property) over a number of generations so that ownership remains within a particular group, usually one family: her father's estate was entailed on a cousin. • n. / ˈenˌtāl/ Law a settlement of the inheritance of property over a number of generations so that it remains within a family or other group. ∎  property that is bequeathed under such conditions. DERIVATIVES: en·tail·ment n.

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Entail

ENTAIL

To abridge, settle, or limit succession to real property. An estate whose succession is limited to certain people rather than being passed to all heirs.

In real property, a fee tail is the conveyance of land subject to certain limitations or restrictions, namely, that it may only descend to certain specified heirs.

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entail

entail (leg.) settle (an estate) on a number of persons in succession XIV; †attach as an inseparable appendage XVI; impose (trouble) upon XVII; involve as a consequence XIX. f. EN-1 + AN. taile or tailé TAIL2.
Hence entail sb. XIV.

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entail

entailail, ale, assail, avail, bail, bale, bewail, brail, Braille, chain mail, countervail, curtail, dale, downscale, drail, dwale, entail, exhale, fail, faille, flail, frail, Gael, Gail, gale, Grail, grisaille, hail, hale, impale, jail, kale, mail, male, nail, nonpareil, outsail, pail, pale, quail, rail, sail, sale, sangrail, scale, shale, snail, stale, swale, tail, tale, they'll, trail, upscale, vail, vale, veil, wail, wale, whale, Yale •Passchendaele • Airedale •Wensleydale • Clydesdale •Chippendale • Coverdale • Abigail •galingale • martingale • nightingale •farthingale • Windscale • timescale •blackmail • airmail •email, female •Ishmael • voicemail • vermeil

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