from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun In Roman law, a contract by which houses or lands were given forever or for a long term on condition of their being improved and a stipulated annual rent paid to the grantor. It was usually for a perpetual term, thus corresponding to the feudal fee.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Rom. Law) A real right, susceptible of assignment and of descent, charged on productive real estate, the right being coupled with the enjoyment of the property on condition of taking care of the estate and paying taxes, and sometimes a small rent.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun law A right to enjoyment of property with a given stipulation that the property will be improved or maintained in an agreed upon manner.


Sorry, no etymologies found.



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  • "Once within the walls of the Ghetto they were alone, and could go about the little streets in perfect security; they were free from the contamination as well as safe from the depredations of Christians, and within their own precincts they were not forced to wear the hated orange-coloured cap or net which Paul the Fourth imposed upon the Jewish men and women. To a great extent, too, such isolation was already in the traditions of the race. A hundred years earlier Venice had created its Ghetto; so had Prague, and other European cities were not long in following. Morally speaking their confinement may have been a humiliation; in sober fact it was an immense advantage; moreover, a special law of 'emphyteusis' made the leases of their homes inalienable, so long as they paid rent, and forbade the raising of the rent under any circumstances, while leaving the tenant absolute freedom to alter and improve his house as he would, together with the right to sublet it, or to sell the lease itself to any other Hebrew; and these leases became very valuable"--Francis Marion Crawford, Ave Roma Immortalis, Vol. 2, Studies from the Chronicles of Rome, 1899.

    August 26, 2016

  • Your wealth is finally useless,

    Your status is fleeting and bootless.

    Be known by your deeds

    And tend other’s needs.

    Our lives are a brief emphyteusis.

    March 19, 2019