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borough-English

[bur-oh-ing-glish or, often, -lish, buhr-]
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noun
  1. (formerly, in some parts of England) a custom by which the youngest son inherited the entire estate upon the death of his father.

Origin of borough-English

Middle English word dating back to 1300–50
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for borough-english

Historical Examples

  • From this nefarious degradation of woman the custom of Borough-English arose, the youngest son becoming the heir.

    Woman, Church & State

    Matilda Joslyn Gage


British Dictionary definitions for borough-english

borough-English

noun
  1. English law (until 1925) a custom in certain English boroughs whereby the youngest son inherited land to the exclusion of his older brothersCompare primogeniture, gavelkind

Word Origin

C14: from Anglo-French tenure en burgh Engloys tenure in an English borough; so called because the custom was unknown in France
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012