Legal Definition and Related Resources of Common

Meaning of Common

Belonging to the community at large ; of frequent or ordinary occurrence or appearance ; characteristic of the lower classes; public , general , familiar, usual and ordinary. prince v state , 59 So.2d 878, 36 Ala.App. 529. The term imports frequency of occurrence. ex parte Newbern, 3 Cal. Rptr. 364, 350 P.2d 116.

Common Alternative Definition

As an adjective, owned by several ; usual ; habitual. As a noun, an incorporeal hereditament, which consists in a profit which one man has in connection with one or more others in the land of another. 12 Serg. & R. (Pa.) 32; 10 “Wend. (N. Y.) 647; 11 Johns. (N. Y.) 498; 16 Johns. (N. Y.) 14, 30; 10 Pick. (Mass.) 364; 3 Kent, Comm. 403. Common of Estovers. The liberty of taking necessary wood, for the use of furniture of a house or farm, from another man’s estate. This right is inseparably attached to the house or farm, and is not apportionable. If, therefore, a farm entitled to estovers be divided by the act of the party among several tenants, neither of them can take estovers, and the right is extinguished. 2 Bl. Comm. 34; Plowd. 381; 10 Wend. (N. Y.) 639; 1 Barb. (N. Y.) 592. It is to be distinguished from the right to estovers which a tenant for life has in the, estate which he occupies. See “Estovers.” Common of Pasture. The right of feeding one’s beasts on another’s land. It is either appendant, appurtenant because of vicinage, or in gross. Common of Piscary. The liberty of fishing in another man’s water. 2 Bl. Comm. 34. See “Fishery.” Common of Shack. The right of persons occupying lands lying together in the same common field to turn out their cattle after harvest to feed promiscuously in that field. Wharton; 2 Steph. Comm. 6; 1 Barn. & Aid. 710. Common of Turbary. The liberty of digging turf in another man’s ground. Common of turbary can only be appendant or appurtenant ‘ to a house, not to lands, because turves are to be spent in the house. 4 Coke, 37; 3 Atk. 189; Nov. 145; 7 East, 127, Common Appendant. A right annexed to the possession of land, by which the owner thereof is entitled to feed his beasts on the wastes of the manor. It can only be claimed by prescription, so that it cannot be pleaded by way of custom. 1 Rolle, Abr. 396 ; 6 Coke, 59. Common Appurtenant. This differs from common appendant in the following particulars, viz.: It may be claimed by grant or prescription, whereas common appendant can only arise from prescription; it does not arise from any connection of tenure, nor is it confined to arable land, but may be claimed as annexed to any kind of land; it may be not only for beasts usually commonable, such as horses, oxen, and sheep, but likewise for goats, swine, etc.; it may be severed from the land to which it is appurtenant; it may be commenced by grant; and an uninterrupted usage for twenty years is evidence of a grant. In most other respects, commons appendant and appurtenant agree. 2 Greenl. Cruise, Dig. 5; Bouv. Inst, note 1650; 30 Eng. Law & Eq. 176; 15 East, 108. Common Because of Vicinage. The right which the inhabitants of two or more contiguous townships or villas have of inter-commoning with each other. It ought to be claimed by prescription, and can only be used by cattle levant and couchant upon the lands to which the right is annexed, and cannot exist except between adjoining townships, where there is no intermediate land. Co. Litt. 122a; 4 Coke, 38a; 7 Coke, 5; 10 Q. B. 581, 589, 604; 19 Q. B. 620; 18 Barb. (N. Y.) 523. It is, indeed, only a permissive right, intended to excuse what, in strictness, is a trespass in both, and to prevent a multiplicity of suits, and therefore either township may inclose and bar out the other, though they have intercommoned time out of mind. 2 Bl. Comm. 33; Co. Litt. 12a; Bracton, fol. 222. Dr. Wooddeson observes that Blackstone’s account of common pur cause de vicinage is not properly a definition, but rather a descriptive example or illustration, there being other occasions when the excuse for trespass may be used. 2 Wooddeson, Lect. 50. Common In Gross. A right of common which must be claimed by deed or prescription. It has no relation to land, but is annexed to a man’s person, and may be for a certain or an indefinite number of cattle. It cannot be aliened so as to give the entire right to several persons to be enjoyed by each in severalty. And where it comes to several persons by operation of law, as by descents, it is incapable of division among them, and must be enjoyed jointly. Common appurtenant for a limited number of cattle may be granted over, and by such grant becomes common in gross. Co. Litt. 122a, 164a; 5 Taunt. 244; 16 Johns. (N. Y.) 30; 2 Bl. Comm. 34. See, generally, Viner, Abr.; Bac. Abr.; Comyn, Dig.; 2 Sharswood, Bl. Comm. 34 et seq.; 2 Washb. Real Prop. 4.

Synonyms of Common

(Customary), adjective

  • accepted
  • ascertained
  • commonplace
  • conventional
  • current
  • currently perceived
  • established
  • everyday
  • familiar
  • frequent
  • generally known
  • natural
  • normal
  • often met with
  • ordinary
  • popular
  • prevailing
  • prevalent
  • publicly known
  • received
  • recognized
  • repeatedly recognized
  • traditional
  • typical
  • universally known
  • usual
  • usually understood
  • wellknown
  • widely known
  • widespread
  • Associated Concepts: common assault
  • commonlaw
  • commonlaw burglary
  • commonlaw contempt
  • commonlaw copyright
  • commonlaw crime
  • commonlaw forgery
  • commonlaw jurisdiction
  • commonlaw larceny
  • commonlaw lien
  • commonlaw marriage
  • commonlaw misdemeanor
  • commonlaw murder
  • commonlaw nuisance
  • commonlaw remedy
  • commonlaw trademark
  • commonlaw trust
  • commonlaw wife
  • common liability
  • common peril
  • common question of law or fact
  • common seal
  • common source of title
  • common stock
  • common thief
  • common use

(Shared), adjective

  • belonging equally to
  • belonging to all
  • belonging to many
  • collective
  • communal
  • communis
  • commutuai
  • conjoint
  • cooperative
  • for the use of all
  • in partnership
  • joint
  • mutual
  • owned jointly
  • participating
  • participatory
  • pertaining to the whole community
  • pooled
  • popular
  • public
  • publicus
  • reciprocal
  • shared among several
  • shared by two or more
  • universal
  • used by all
  • Associated Concepts: common adventure
  • common belief
  • common boundary line
  • common carrier
  • common council
  • common directors
  • common disaster
  • common driveway
  • common enemy doctrine
  • common enterprise
  • common good
  • common interest
  • common jurisdiction
  • common knowledge
  • common labor
  • common lands
  • common necessity
  • common plan
  • common plea courts
  • common property
  • common recovery
  • common rights
  • common scheme
  • common stock
  • common wall
  • common walls

Related Entries of Common in the Encyclopedia of Law Project

Browse or run a search for Common in the American Encyclopedia of Law, the Asian Encyclopedia of Law, the European Encyclopedia of Law, the UK Encyclopedia of Law or the Latin American and Spanish Encyclopedia of Law.

Common in Historical Law

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Legal Abbreviations and Acronyms

Search for legal acronyms and/or abbreviations containing Common in the Legal Abbreviations and Acronyms Dictionary.

Related Legal Terms

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Mentioned in these terms

Absurdity, Accomplice, Accord And Satisfaction, Agreement, Ascertain, Assembly, Association, Bailment, Beach, Blood, Blood Relationship, , Brothel, Brother, Capital Structure, Carrier, Certificate Of Authenticity, Channel, Chose, Church, Class, Class Action, Classification, Close Corporation, Co-operative Association, Co-owners, Co-tenant, Co-tenancy, Collective Bargaining, Combination, Combines, Commerce, Common Authority, Common Employment, Common Enterprise, Common Law, Commons, Community, Comprehensive Zoning Plan, Concerted Activity, Condominium, Contiguity, Contribution, Coparcener, Coparcenary, Cornage, Custom, Cy-prés, Detinue, , Ejectment, Eminent Domain, Enticement, Equity, Escalator Clause, Extenuating Circumstances, Federal Common Law, Found-in, General, Good Consideration, Hereditament, Highway, , Inclosure, Indecency, Indictment, Indifference, Indifferent, Indorsement, Inference, Inquest, Interest, Interinsurance, Investment Contract, Joint Enterprise, Joint Stock Company, Joint Venture, Judgment Roll, Judicial Notice, , Lease, Limited Partnership, Maritime Lien, Mens Rea, Monopoly, Mortgage, Mutual, Mutual Mistake, Natural, Non-branded Independent Market, Nuisance, Ordeal, Ordinary, , Pannage, Parcenary, Participate, Presumption, Protectorate, Queen’s Bench, , Railroad, Railway, Ratification, Recovery, Related, Relative, Replevin, Restraint Of Trade, Right, Right Of Common, Robbery, , Rubic, , Scold, , Seisin, Seisin, Livery Of, Sentence, Share, Shrew, Simultaneous Death, Sister, Specific Performance, State, Stock Exchange, Surcharge, Tenant By The Curtesy, Term Of Years.


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Common in Law Enforcement

Main Entry: Law Enforcement in the Legal Dictionary. This section provides, in the context of Law Enforcement, a partial definition of common.

Etimology of “-ty”

(You will find words ending with -ty at the world legal encyclopedia and the etimology of more terms).

suffix representing “ten” in cardinal numbers that are multiples of 10 (sixty, seventy, etc.), from Old English -tig, from a Germanic root (cognates: Old Saxon, Dutch -tig, Old Frisian -tich, Old Norse -tigr, Old High German -zug, German -zig) that existed as a distinct word in Gothic (tigjus) and Old Norse (tigir) meaning “tens, decades.” Compare tithe; this term is also a noun.. English, like many other Germanic languages, retains traces of a base-12 number system. The most obvious instance is eleven and twelve which ought to be the first two numbers of the “teens” series. Their Old English forms, enleofan and twel(eo)f(an), are more transparent: “leave one” and “leave two.” Old English also had hund endleofantig for “110” and hund twelftig for “120.” One hundred was hund teantig. The -tig formation ran through 12 cycles, and could have bequeathed us numbers *eleventy (“110”) and *twelfty (“120”) had it endured, but already during the Anglo-Saxon period it was being obscured. Old Norse used hundra_ for “120” and _usend for “1,200.” Tvauhundra_ was “240” and _riuhundra_ was “360.” Older Germanic legal texts distinguished a “common hundred” (100) from a “great hundred” (120). This duodecimal system is “perhaps due to contact with Babylonia” [Lass, “Old English”].

Etimology of Coeno-

(You may find coeno- at the world legal encyclopedia and the etimology of more terms).

word-forming element meaning “common,” Latinized from Greek koinos “common, public, shared, general, ordinary,” from PIE *kom “beside, near, by, with” (see com-).


This term is an adjetive.

Etimology of Common

(You may find common at the world legal encyclopedia and the etimology of more terms).

c. 1300, “belonging to all, general,” from Old French comun “common, general, free, open, public” (9c., Modern French commun), from Latin communis “in common, public, shared by all or many; general, not specific; familiar, not pretentious,” from PIE *ko-moin-i- “held in common,” compound adjective formed from *ko- “together” + *moi-n-, suffixed form of root *mei- (1) “change, exchange” (see mutable), hence literally “shared by all.” Second element of the compound also is the source of Latin munia “duties, public duties, functions,” those related to munia “office.” Perhaps reinforced in Old French by the Germanic form of PIE *ko-moin-i- (compare Old English gemæne “common, public, general, universal;” see mean (adj.)), which came to French via Frankish. Used disparagingly of women and criminals since c. 1300. Common pleas is 13c., from Anglo-French communs plets, hearing civil actions by one subject against another as opposed to pleas of the crown. Common prayer is contrasted with private prayer. Common stock is attested from 1888.


See Also

  • Law Enforcement Officer
  • Police Officer
  • Law Enforcement Agency

Further Reading

English Legal System: Common

In the context of the English law, A Dictionary of Law provides the following legal concept of Common :

A *profit à prendre enjoyed by a number of landowners over *common land. A right of common may be *appurtenant, in gross (i.e. independent of any *dominant tenement), or pur cause de vicinage (“by reason of neighbourhood”: the right to allow animals grazing common land to stray onto adjoining common land). They generally comprise rights of pasture (grazing), piscary (fishing), turbary (rare; a right to take turf), ferae naturae (A right to take animals), *estovers, etc., and unless they exist in gross are usually limited to the reasonable needs of the dominant tenements.



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