I have been trying to make out what the theories of the lawyers were with regard to villainage in its divers ramifications.
I have had to speak of prescription as a source of villainage.
It is a stepping-stone from villainage to socage, or rather to socman's tenure.
The men of ancient demesne are men of free blood holding in villainage.
As to the general aspect of villainage in the legal theory of English feudalism there can be no doubt.
Now the obligation to serve as reeve was taken as a mark of villainage.
Surely this could happen only because the tenure in ancient demesne, although a kind of villainage, closely resembled freehold.
On the other hand, 'regardant' is used quite independently of villainage.
Vinogradoff, villainage, 149, gives a few instances of its occurrence; but it seems to be very rare.
And so we have one more general observation to make as to the legal aspect of villainage.