[ gav-uhl-kahynd ]

nounEnglish Law.
  1. (originally) a tenure of land in which the tenant was liable for a rental in money or produce rather than for labor or military service.

  2. a customary system of land tenure whose chief feature was equal division of land among the heirs of the holder.

  1. the land so held.

Origin of gavelkind

1175–1225; Middle English gavelkinde, gavlikind,Old English gafelgavel2 + (ge)cyndkind2

Words Nearby gavelkind Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use gavelkind in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for gavelkind


/ (ˈɡævəlˌkaɪnd) /

  1. a former system of land tenure peculiar to Kent based on the payment of rent to the lord instead of the performance of services by the tenant

  2. the land subject to such tenure

  1. English law (formerly) land held under this system

Origin of gavelkind

C13: from Old English gafol tribute + gecynd kind ²

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