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1100 - 1400
Keeping an urban property in the family.

The laws of the towns attempted to keep inherited land within the family whenever possible.If a person was forced to sell land because of poverty, the relatives were to have the first opportunity to acquire it. Note that it was recognized that both men and women might inherit lands.


Of heritagis of borowagis to be salde.

If any heritage of burgage land comes to any man or woman or sisters on the father's side or mother's side in the burgh, and he or she is forced through poverty to sell or to pledge or to lease or in any other manner to put it away, it is not lawful to them to sell, pledge or lease or any other way to put it away from them to any strange man, if the nearest heirs will buy it or receive it in pledge or lease it.

Gif ony heritage of borowagis fallys till ony man or woman or systeris on the fadyrhalf or on the modyrhalf in burgh, and it behufis hym or hyr thruch poverte thair borowage to sell or to wedset or to ferme lat or ony othir maner to put away, it is nocht leful to thaim that borowage to sell na to wedset na to let to fee na on nane other wayis to put fra thaim self til ony strange man, gif the nerrest ayris wil by it or tak in wed or in feuferm.


Ancient Laws and Customs of the Burghs of Scotland, Vol. 1.1124-1424 ed Cosmo Innes (Edinburgh: Scottish Burgh Records Society, 1868), Leges Burgorum, no 114, p.55. Translation by E. Ewan

Tags: law inheritance land