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late 13c., from Old French homage (12c., Modern French hommage) "allegiance or respect for one's feudal lord," from homme "man," from Latin homo (genitive hominis) "man" (see homunculus). Figurative sense of "reverence, honor shown" is from late 14c. As a verb, from 1590s (agent noun homager is from c.1400).
in European society, solemn acts of ritual by which a person became a vassal of a lord in feudal society. Homage was essentially the acknowledgment of the bond of tenure that existed between the two. It consisted of the vassal surrendering himself to the lord, symbolized by his kneeling and giving his joined hands to the lord, who clasped them in his own, thus accepting the surrender.