ABATEMENT OF A FREEHOLD. The entry of a stranger after the death of the
ancestor, and before the heir or devisee takes possession, by which the
rightful possession of the heir or devisee is defeated. 3 Bl. 1 Com. 167;
Co. Lit. 277, a; Finch's Law, 1 195; Arch. Civ. Pl. 11.
2. By the ancient laws of Normandy, this term was used to signify the act of one who, having an apparent right of possession to an estate, took possession of it immediately after the death of the actual possessor, before the heir entered. Howard, Anciennes Lois des Frangais, tome 1, p. 539.