the rent; by fpecial words: but by a general grant of the reverfion, the rent will pafs with it, as incident thereunto; though by the grant of the rent generally, the reversion will not pafs. The incident paffes by the grant of the principal, but not e converfo: for the maxim of law is, " accefforium non " ducit, fed fequitur, fuum principale‘.”

THESE incidental rights of the reverfioner, and the refpective modes of defcent, in which remainders very frequently differ from reverfions, have occafioned the law to be careful in diftinguishing the one from the other, however inaccurately the parties themselves may defcribe them. For if one, feifed of a paternal eftate in fee, makes a leafe for life, with remainder to himself and his heirs, this is properly a mere reverfion", to which rent and fealty shall be incident; and which shall only defcend to the heirs of his father's blood, and not to his heirs general, as a remainder limited to him by a third person would have done : for it is the old eftate, which was originally in him, and never yet was out of him. And fo likewife, if a man grants a lease for life to A, referving rent, with reverfion to B and his heirs, B hath a remainder descendible to his heirs general, and not a reverfion to which the rent is incident; but the grantor shall be entitled to the rent, during the continuance of A's eftate *.

In order to assist such persons as have any estate in remain [177] der, reverfion, or expectancy, after the death of others, against fraudulent concealments of their deaths, it is enacted by the statute 6 Ann. c. 18. that all perfons on whose lives any lands or tenements are holden, shall (upon application to the court of chancery and order made thereupon) once in every year, if required, be produced to the court, or it's commissioners; or, upon neglect or refufal, they shall be taken to be actually dead, and the perfon entitled to fuch

t Co. Litt. 151, 152.
Cro, Eliz, 321.

#3 Lev. 407.

* 1 And. 23.


expectant eftate may enter upon and hold the lands and tenements, till the party fhall appear to be living.

BEFORE We conclude the doctrine of remainders and reverfions, it may be proper to observe, that whenever a greater estate and a less coincide and meet in one and the fame perfon, without any intermediate estate y, the less is immediately annihilated; or, in the law phrafe, is faid to be merged, that is, funk or drowned in the greater. Thus, if there be tenant for years, and the reverfion in fee-fimple defcends to or is purchased by him, the term of years is merged in the inheritance, and shall never exift any more. But they must come to one and the fame perfon in one and the same right; elfe, if the freehold be in his own right, and he has a term in right of another (en auter droit) there is no merger. Therefore, if tenant for years dies, and makes him who hath the reverfion in fee his executor, whereby the term of years vests also in him, the term shall not merge; for he hath the fee in his own right, and the term of years in the right of the teftator, and fubject to his debts and legacies. So alfo, if he who hath the reverfion in fee marries the tenant for years, there is no merger; for he hath the inheritance in his own right, the lease in the right of his wife. An estate-tail is an exception to this rule: for a man may have in his own right both an estate tail and a reversion in fee; and the estatetail, though a lefs eftate, fhall not merge in the fee. For eftates-tail are protected and preferved from merger by the [178] operation and construction, though not by the exprefs words, of the ftatute de donis: which operation and construction have probably arifen upon this confideration; that, in the common cafes of merger of estates for life or years by uniting with the inheritance, the particular tenant hath the fole intereft in them, and hath full power at any time to defeat, destroy, or furrender them to him that hath the reversion ; therefore, when fuch an eftate unites with the reverfion. in fee, the law confiders it in the light of a virtual furrender of

12 Rep. 61. 8 Rep. 74.

y 3 Lev. 437.
Plow. 413. Cro. Jae, 275, Co. Litt. 338.


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the inferior eftate. But, in an estate-tail, the cafe is otherwife: the tenant for a long time had no power at all over it, fo as to bar or to destroy it, and now can only do it by certain special modes, by a fine, a recovery, and the like: it would therefore have been ftrangely improvident, to have permitted the tenant in tail, by purchafing the reversion in fee, to merge his particular eftate, and defeat the inheritance of his iffue: and hence it has become a maxim, that a tenancy in tail, which cannot be furrendered, cannot alfo be merged in the fee.

b Cro. Eliz. 302.

See pag 116.




E come now to treat of estates, with respect to the number and connexions of their owners, the tenants who occupy and hold them. And, confidered in this view, eftates of any quantity or length of duration, and whether they be in actual poffeffion or expectancy, may be held in four different ways; in feveralty, in joint-tenancy, in coparcenary, and in common.

I. HE that holds lands or tenements in feveralty, or is fole tenant thereof, is he that holds them in his own right only, without any other perfon being joined or connected with him in point of intereft, during his eftate therein. This is the most common and ufual way of holding an eftate; and therefore we may make the fame obfervations here, that we did upon eftates in poffeffion, as contradiftinguished from those in expectancy, in the preceding chapter: that there is little or nothing peculiar to be remarked concerning it, fince all eftates are fuppofed to be of this fort, unless where they are exprofsly declared to be otherwise; and that in laying down general rules and doctrines, we ufually apply them to fuch estates as are held in feveralty. I fhall therefore proceed to confider the other three species of eftates, in which there are always a plurality of tenants.

II. AN estate in joint-tenancy is where lands or tenements are granted to two or more perfons, to hold in fee-fimple, fee-tail, for life, for years, or at will. In confequence of fuch

fuch grants an estate is called an estate in joint-tenancy 2, and fometimes an estate in jointure, which word as well as the other fignifies an union or conjunction of intereft; though in common speech the term jointure, is now usually confined to that joint eftate, which by virtue of the ftatute 27 Hen. VIII. c. 10. is frequently vefted in the husband and wife before marriage, as a full fatisfaction and bar of the woman's dower.

In unfolding this title, and the two remaining ones in the present chapter, we will first inquire, how these estates may be created; next, their properties and respective incidents; and laftly, how they may be fevered or destroyed.

1. THE creation of an estate in joint-tenancy depends on the wording of the deed or devife, by which the tenants claim title; for this eftate can only arife by purchase or grant, that is, by the act of the parties, and never by the mere act of law. Now, if an estate be given to a plurality of perfons, without adding any restrictive, exclufive, or explanatory words, as if an eftate be granted to A and B and their heirs, this makes them immediately joint-tenants in fee of the lands. For the law interprets the grant fo as to make all parts of it take effect, which can only be done by creating an equal eftate in them both. As therefore the grantor has thus united their names, the law gives them a thorough union in all other refpects. For,

2. THE properties of a joint eftate are derived from it's unity, which is fourfold; the unity of intereft, the unity of title, the unity of time, and the unity of poffeffion: or, in other words, joint-tenants have one and the fame interest, accruing by one and the fame conveyance, commencing at one and the fame time, and held by one and the fame undivided poffeflion.

FIRST, they must have one and the fame intereft. One [ 181 1 joint-tenant cannot be entitled to one period of duration or quantity of interest in lands, and the other to a different;

a Litt. § 277:



b See pag. 1376


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