, lit. “an implanting”). A
perpetual and “real” right in agricultural land which belongs to another
person, entitling the emphyteuta
to cultivate it practically as though it
were his own, on condition of paying a fixed rent (pensio, canon
) to the
, or owner, somewhat after the nature of the English
“feefarm” rent (“feodifirma,” Magna
, c. 37).
The origin of emphyteusis is traceable to the agri vectigales
distinctly mentioned about the time of Hadrian—large tracts of grazing land in Italy, belonging to the State, religious corporations (e. g. the Vestal
Virgins), or the smaller civitates
but held and enjoyed by private persons subject to the payment of a perpetual rent (vectigal
), or let out upon very long leases. The rights of such occupiers, at
first purely contractual, acquired a “real” character, analogous to that
of genuine ownership, from the praetor, who protected their possession (Dig.
8, 15, 1) by interdicts and by a utilis actio in rem
), availing even against the lessor when nonpayment of rent was not
vi. 3, 1, 2). An addition had thus been made to the iura in re aliena
of Roman law: the right was alienable both inter vivos
and by will, and descended to the tenant's heirs on his intestacy, though
at that time it had not acquired a specific name.