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3 definitions found
 for Ancient demesne
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Ancient \An"cient\, a. [OE. auncien, F. ancien, LL. antianus,
     fr. L. ante before. See Ante-, pref.]
     1. Old; that happened or existed in former times, usually at
        a great distance of time; belonging to times long past;
        specifically applied to the times before the fall of the
        Roman empire; -- opposed to modern; as, ancient authors,
        literature, history; ancient days.
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              Witness those ancient empires of the earth.
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              Gildas Albanius . . . much ancienter than his
              namesake surnamed the Wise.           --Fuller.
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     2. Old; that has been of long duration; of long standing; of
        great age; as, an ancient forest; an ancient castle. "Our
        ancient bickerings." --Shak.
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              Remove not the ancient landmarks, which thy fathers
              have set.                             --Prov. xxii.
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              An ancient man, strangely habited, asked for
              quarters.                             --Scott.
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     3. Known for a long time, or from early times; -- opposed to
        recent or new; as, the ancient continent.
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              A friend, perhaps, or an ancient acquaintance.
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     4. Dignified, like an aged man; magisterial; venerable.
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              He wrought but some few hours of the day, and then
              would he seem very grave and ancient. --Holland.
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     5. Experienced; versed. [Obs.]
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              Though [he] was the youngest brother, yet he was the
              most ancient in the business of the realm.
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     6. Former; sometime. [Obs.]
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              They mourned their ancient leader lost. --Pope.
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     Ancient demesne (Eng. Law), a tenure by which all manors
        belonging to the crown, in the reign of William the
        Conqueror, were held. The numbers, names, etc., of these
        were all entered in a book called Domesday Book.
     Ancient lights (Law), windows and other openings which have
        been enjoined without molestation for more than twenty
        years. In England, and in some of the United States, they
        acquire a prescriptive right.
        [1913 Webster]
     Syn: Old; primitive; pristine; antique; antiquated;
          old-fashioned; obsolete.
     Usage: Ancient, Antiquated, Obsolete, Antique,
            Antic, Old. -- Ancient is opposed to modern, and
            has antiquity; as, an ancient family, ancient
            landmarks, ancient institutions, systems of thought,
            etc. Antiquated describes that which has gone out of
            use or fashion; as, antiquated furniture, antiquated
            laws, rules, etc. Obsolete is commonly used, instead
            of antiquated, in reference to language, customs,
            etc.; as, an obsolete word or phrase, an obsolete
            expression. Antique is applied, in present usage,
            either to that which has come down from the ancients;
            as, an antique cameo, bust, etc.; or to that which is
            made to imitate some ancient work of art; as, an
            antique temple. In the days of Shakespeare, antique
            was often used for ancient; as, "an antique song," "an
            antique Roman;" and hence, from singularity often
            attached to what is ancient, it was used in the sense
            of grotesque; as, "an oak whose antique root peeps
            out; " and hence came our present word antic, denoting
            grotesque or ridiculous. We usually apply both ancient
            and old to things subject to gradual decay. We say, an
            old man, an ancient record; but never, the old stars,
            an old river or mountain. In general, however, ancient
            is opposed to modern, and old to new, fresh, or
            recent. When we speak of a thing that existed
            formerly, which has ceased to exist, we commonly use
            ancient; as, ancient republics, ancient heroes; and
            not old republics, old heroes. But when the thing
            which began or existed in former times is still in
            existence, we use either ancient or old; as, ancient
            statues or paintings, or old statues or paintings;
            ancient authors, or old authors, meaning books.
            [1913 Webster]

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Demesne \De*mesne"\, n. [OE. demeine, demain, rule, demesne, OF.
     demeine, demaine, demeigne, domaine, power, F. domaine
     domain, fr. L. dominium property, right of ownership, fr.
     dominus master, proprietor, owner. See Dame, and cf.
     Demain, Domain, Danger, Dungeon.] (Law)
     A lord's chief manor place, with that part of the lands
     belonging thereto which has not been granted out in tenancy;
     a house, and the land adjoining, kept for the proprietor's
     own use. [Written also demain.] --Wharton's Law Dict.
     [1913 Webster]
     Ancient demesne. (Eng. Law) See under Ancient.
        [1913 Webster]

From Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856) :

  ANCIENT DEMESNE, Eng. law. Those lands which either were reserved to the
  crown at the original distribution of landed property, or such as came to it
  afterwards, by forfeiture or other means. 1. Sal. 57; hob. 88; 4 Inst. 264;
  1 Bl. Com. 286; Bac. Ab. h.t.; F. N. B. 14.

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