[dih-meyn, -meen]
possession of land as one's own: land held in demesne.
an estate or part of an estate occupied and controlled by, and worked for the exclusive use of, the owner.
land belonging to and adjoining a manor house; estate.
the dominion or territory of a sovereign or state; domain.
a district; region.

1250–1300; Middle English demeine < Anglo-French demesne, Old French demein; see domain

demesnial, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
demesne (dɪˈmeɪn, -ˈmiːn)
1.  land, esp surrounding a house or manor, retained by the owner for his own use
2.  property law the possession and use of one's own property or land
3.  the territory ruled by a state or a sovereign; realm; domain
4.  a region or district; domain
[C14: from Old French demeine; see domain]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

late 13c., from O.Fr. demeine, from L. dominicus "belonging to a master," from dominus "lord." Re-spelled by Anglo-Fr. legal scribes under infl. of O.Fr. mesnie "household" (and the concept of a demesne as "land attached to a mansion") and their fondness for inserting -s- before -n-. Essentially the
same word as domain.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Britannica


in English feudal law, that portion of a manor not granted to freehold tenants but either retained by the lord for his own use and occupation or occupied by his villeins or leasehold tenants. When villein tenure developed into the more secure copyhold and leaseholders became protected against premature eviction, the "lord's demesne" came to be restricted and usually denoted the lord's house and the park and surrounding lands

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences for demesne
New sheriffdoms enabled the king to effectively administer royal demesne land.
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