Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A lord or sovereign to whom allegiance and service are due according to feudal law.
  • noun A vassal or subject owing allegiance and services to a lord or sovereign under feudal law.
  • noun A loyal subject to a monarch.
  • adjective Entitled to the loyalty and services of vassals or subjects.
  • adjective Bound to give such allegiance and services to a lord or monarch.
  • adjective Loyal; faithful.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Free; specifically, free from obligation to service except as within the relations of lord and vassal: as, a liege lord, a liege man (correlative terms implying protection on the one side and service on the other, as against all other claims).
  • Of or pertaining to the tie reciprocally connecting vassal and chief: as, liege vassalage.
  • noun A liegeman; a subject; a vassal; hence, a law-abiding citizen; a peaceably disposed person: as, to disturb the lieges.
  • noun A liege lord; one to whom another is bound in fealty or vassalage; a sovereign lord or feudal superior; a lord paramount.

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

  • adjective Sovereign; independent; having authority or right to allegiance.
  • adjective serving an independent sovereign or master; bound by a feudal tenure; obliged to be faithful and loyal to a superior, as a vassal to his lord; faithful; loyal
  • adjective (Old Law) Full; perfect; complete; pure.
  • adjective (Feudal Custom) that homage of one sovereign or prince to another which acknowledged an obligation of fealty and services.
  • adjective (Scots Law) perfect, i. e., legal, power; specif., having health requisite to do legal acts.
  • adjective [Obs.] perfect, i. e., pure, widowhood.
  • noun A free and independent person; specif., a lord paramount; a sovereign.
  • noun The subject of a sovereign or lord; a liegeman.

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

  • noun A free and independent person; specifically, a lord paramount; a sovereign.
  • noun The subject of a sovereign or lord; a liegeman.
  • adjective Sovereign; independent; having authority or right to allegiance; as, a liege lord.
  • adjective Serving an independent sovereign or master; bound by a feudal tenure; obliged to be faithful and loyal to a superior, as a vassal to his lord; faithful; loyal; as, a liege man; a liege subject.
  • adjective Full; perfect; complete; pure.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun city in eastern Belgium; largest French-speaking city in Belgium
  • adjective owing or owed feudal allegiance and service
  • noun a feudal lord entitled to allegiance and service
  • noun a person holding a fief; a person who owes allegiance and service to a feudal lord

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English, from Old French, entitled to feudal allegiance, from Late Latin laeticus, being a semifree colonist in Gaul, from laetus, a semifree colonist, of Germanic origin; see lē- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Middle English lege, lige, liege, from Anglo-Norman lige, from Old French liege ("liege, free"), from Middle High German ledic, ledec ("free, empty, vacant") (Modern German ledig ("unmarried")) from Proto-Germanic *liþugaz (“flexible, free, unoccupied”). Akin to Old Frisian leþeg, leþoch ("free"), Old English liþiġ ("flexible"), Old Norse liðugr ("free, unhindered"), Middle Dutch ledich ("idle, unemployed") (Dutch ledig ("empty") and leeg ("empty")), Middle English lethi ("unoccupied, at leisure").

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