Definitions

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun Inheritance; patrimony; specifically, stock; cattle.
  • noun [D. erf.] In Cape Colony, some parts of the State of New York, and other regions originally settled by the Dutch, a small inherited house-and-garden lot in a village or settlement.

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

  • noun Cape Colony A garden plot, usually about half an acre.

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

  • noun Inheritance; patrimony.
  • noun by extension Stock; cattle.
  • noun New York A small inherited house-and-garden lot in a village or settlement.

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English erfe, erve, from Old English yrfe, ierfe ("heritage, bequest, inheritance, property, inherited property, property that passes to an heir, cattle, livestock"), from Proto-Germanic *arbijan (“heritage”), from Proto-Indo-European *orbho-, *h2orbho- (“orphan”). Cognate with Dutch erf ("inheritance, patrimony, ground, courtyard"), German Erbe ("heritage, legacy, inheritance"), Danish arv ("heritage, inheritance"), Swedish arv ("heritage, inheritance"), Gothic  (arbi, "inheritance"), Latin orbus ("orphan"), Ancient Greek ὀρφανός (orphanós, "orphan"), Old English ierfa ("heir"). Related to orf.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Dutch erf ("patrimony, ground"), related to English erf above.

Examples

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