Definitions for heriot
the return of military equipment
a payment made to a lord on the death of a tenant
formerly, a payment or tribute of arms or military accouterments, or the best beast, or chattel, due to the lord on the death of a tenant; in modern use, a customary tribute of goods or chattels to the lord of the fee, paid on the decease of a tenant
Heriot, from Old English heregeat, was originally a death-duty in late Anglo-Saxon England, which required that at death, a nobleman provided to his king a given set of military equipment, often including horses, swords, shields, spears and helmets. It later developed into a kind of tenurial feudal relief due from villeins. The equivalent term in French was le droit du meilleur catel.
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