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headright

[hed-rahyt] /ˈhɛdˌraɪt/
noun
1.
Law. a beneficial interest for each member of an Indian tribe in the tribal trust fund accruing from the lease of tribal oil, gas, and mineral rights, the sale of tribal lands, etc.
2.
American History. a grant of land, usually 50 acres to a settler, given by certain colonies and companies in the 17th and 18th centuries.
Origin
1695-1705
1695-1705, Americanism; head + right
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Contemporary definitions for headright
noun

in US history, the grant of a certain number of acres (usu. 50) to a settler in a new territory, specif. in the 17th and 18th centuries; also, the system which offered these land grants; also written head-right

Examples

New settlers who paid their own passage to Virginia were granted one headright.

noun

the provision to Native American tribal members of an interest in the tribal trust fund accruing from the lease of tribal oil, gas, and mineral rights, and the sale of tribal lands

noun

an inheritable right to land, formerly granted in Texas

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