ABEYANCE PDF Print E-mail
Religion - Law
Written by Ephraim Chambers   
Thursday, 01 January 1728 09:00
or ABBAYANCE, an obsolete Law-Term, whose precise Signification is not easily gather'd ; having been out of date as long ago as Littleton's Days.

That Author gives it, as his Sense of the Word, that to be in Abeyance is to be in the Entendement, Remembrance, & Consideration de la Loy : In which Sense, says he, the Right of Fee-simple is said to be in Abeyance.

He adds, Tiel Chose & Tiel Droit qui est dit en divers Livres etre en Abeyance est a tant a dire en latine, Talis res vel tale rectum quæ vel quod non est in homine ad tunc superstite, Sed tantummodo est, & constitit in Consideratione & Intelligentia Legis ; H$ quod alii dixerunt, talem rem, aut tale rectum sore in Nubibus.

Sir Edward Coke observes, that among the antient Lawyers, things that are in posse only, and not in esseQuæ nondum sunt desfinitæ, aut sententia comprobatæ sed sunt adhuc in expectatione.

This he confirms from the Etymology of the Word, from the French or Flemish Bayer, or Beer, to gape or wait for any thing with a longing Desire.

Dr. Harris, improving somewhat on his Authorities, says, Abeyance signifies a Thing's being only in posse, and not in attu. Thus, adds he, when the Parson of a Church dies, and the Church becomes void, the Fee is in Abeyance ; because it is not determin'd who shall succeed him.

In this Sense, our Abeyance may be compar'd to the Hæreditas Jacens of the Civilians; 'Tis a Principle in Law, That of every Land there is a Fee-simple, or it is in Abeyance. See FEE-Simple.