What does the word fief mean?

Usage examples for fief

  1. In 1204, Philippe- Auguste besieged Chinon and Loches simultaneously, and took the latter after a year, when he made it a fief, and gave it to Dreux de Mello, Constable of France, who in turn sold it to St. Louis. – Castles and Chateaux of Old Touraine and the Loire Country by Francis Miltoun
  2. Even the Emperor heard of her, and, as he was desirous that such a splendid fief should pass into the hands of a suitable husband, he determined to pay the celebrated widow a visit in the course of a journey, and signified his intention to her in a most gracious and friendly letter. – Seven Legends by Gottfried Keller
  3. The process went on till it was becoming a serious difficulty to discover how the King was to get his services from the tenant in capite, who had practically got rid of two- thirds of his fief, and how he again was to get his services from the mesne tenant, who had parted with two- thirds of his estate to half a dozen under tenants. – The Coming of the Friars by Augustus Jessopp