SEISIN, estates. The possession of an estate of freehold. 8 N. H. Rep. 57; 3
Hamm. 220; 8 Litt. 134; 4 Mass. 408. Seisin was used in contradistinction to
that precarious kind of possession by which tenants in villenage held their
lands, which was considered to be the possession of their lords in, whom the
2. Seisin is either in fact or in law.
3. Where a freehold estate is conveyed to a person by feoffment, with livery of seisin, or by any of those conveyances which derive their effect from the statute of uses, he acquires a seisin in deed or in fact, and a freehold in deed: but where the freehold comes to a person by act of law, as by descent, he only acquires a seisin in law, that is, a right of possession, and his estate is called a freehold In law.
4. The seisin in law, which the heir acquires on the death of his ancestor, May be defeated by the entry of a stranger, claiming a right to the land, which is called an abatement. (q.v.)
5. The actual seisin of an estate may be lost by the forcible entry of a stranger who thereby ousts or dispossesses the owner this act is called a disseisin. (q.v.)
6. According to Lord Mansfield, the various alterations which have been made in the law for the last three centuries, "have left us but the name of feoffment, seisin, tenure, and, freeholder, without any precise knowledge of the thing originally signified by these sounds."
7. In the United States, a conveyance by deed executed and acknowledged, and properly recorded according to law, and the descent cast upon the heir are, in general, considered as a seisin in deed without entry; and a grant by letters-patent from the commonwealth has the same effect. 4 Mass. R. 546; 7 Mass. R. 494; 15. Mass. R. 214 1 Munf. R. 17O. The recording of a deed is equivalent to livery of seisin. 4 Mass. 546.
8. In Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Massachusetts and Ohio, seisin means merely, ownership, and the distinction between seisin in deed and in law is not known in practice. Walk. Intr. 324, 330; 1 Hill. Abr. 24 4 Day, R. 305; 4 Mass.; R. 489 14 Pick. R. 224. A patent by the commonwealth, in Kentucky, gives a, right entry, but not actual seisin. 3 Bibb, Rep. 57. Vide 1 Inst. 31; 19 Vin. Ab. 306; Dane's Abr. c. 104, a. 3; 4 Kent, Com. 2, 381; Cruise's Dig. t. 1, Sec. 23; Toull. Dr. Civ. Fr. liv. 3, t. 1, c. 1, n. 80; Poth. Traite des Fiefs, part 1, c. 2; 3 Sumn. R. 170. Vide Livery of Seisin.