heritage

[her-i-tij]
noun
1.
something that comes or belongs to one by reason of birth; an inherited lot or portion: a heritage of poverty and suffering; a national heritage of honor, pride, and courage.
2.
something reserved for one: the heritage of the righteous.
3.
Law.
a.
something that has been or may be inherited by legal descent or succession.
b.
any property, especially land, that devolves by right of inheritance.

Origin:
1175–1225; Middle English < Middle French, equivalent to heriter to inherit + -age -age; see heir


1. estate, patrimony. See inheritance.
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World English Dictionary
heritage (ˈhɛrɪtɪdʒ)
 
n
1.  something inherited at birth, such as personal characteristics, status, and possessions
2.  anything that has been transmitted from the past or handed down by tradition
3.  a.  the evidence of the past, such as historical sites, buildings, and the unspoilt natural environment, considered collectively as the inheritance of present-day society
 b.  (as modifier; cap. as part of name): Bannockburn Heritage Centre
4.  something that is reserved for a particular person or group or the outcome of an action, way of life, etc: the sea was their heritage; the heritage of violence
5.  law any property, esp land, that by law has descended or may descend to an heir
6.  Bible
 a.  the Israelites regarded as belonging inalienably to God
 b.  the land of Canaan regarded as God's gift to the Israelites
 
[C13: from Old French; see heir]

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

heritage
early 13c., "that which may be inherited," from O.Fr. eritage, from heriter "inherit," from L.L. hereditare, ult. from L. heres (gen. heredis) "heir" (see heredity).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Characters attempt to escape their Appalachian heritage, only to be drawn back
  to their agrarian roots.
At least 35 million adults say they plan vacations around cultural or heritage
  activities.
Part of my heritage is another garlic-obsessed culture.
One of the few remaining signs of their limbed heritage is the presence of
  vestigial hips imprisoned in the rib cage.
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