How Do You Spell METAYER?

Pronunciation: [mˌɛtəɹˈa͡ɪə] (IPA)

The word "Metayer" is derived from French and refers to a system of farming where the land and crops are shared between the landowner and tenant farmer. It is spelled as [mɛtejɛ] in IPA phonetic transcription, with the stress on the second syllable. The "e" at the end of the first syllable is pronounced as an open-mid vowel sound, while the "ai" combination in the second syllable is pronounced like an open "e" sound followed by "i".

METAYER Meaning and Definition

  1. Metayer is a historical agricultural system prevalent in France and certain other regions during the Middle Ages and Early Modern period. Derived from the French word métayage, which means "sharing," metayer refers to a form of sharecropping where the landowner and tenant farmer would divide the proceeds of a harvest in a predetermined proportion.

    Under the metayer system, the landowner provided the land and initial capital for farming operations, such as seeds, tools, and equipment, while the tenant farmer (known as the métayer) supplied their labor and expertise. The harvest, or the resulting agricultural produce, was divided between the two parties, typically with the landowner receiving a larger share, ranging from one-third to one-half depending on the specific arrangements.

    Metayer arrangements varied from region to region and were subject to negotiation. The tenant farmer's share served as a form of rent or payment for the use of the land, and this proportion was often adjusted based on factors such as the quality of the soil, the crop yield, and the overall productivity.

    The metayer system provided an economical solution for landowners who may have had limited resources or manpower to cultivate their lands effectively. It also allowed tenant farmers to access land and resources they may not have otherwise been able to afford, providing them with a means of livelihood. The metayer system declined in prominence with the onset of industrialization and the consolidation of land ownership in the hands of a few wealthy landowners.

  2. One who tills the land for a landlord on condition of receiving half the produce.

    Etymological and pronouncing dictionary of the English language. By Stormonth, James, Phelp, P. H. Published 1874.

Common Misspellings for METAYER

Etymology of METAYER

The word "metayer" comes from the French term "métayer", which in turn derives from the Old French word "mestayer". This Old French word is a combination of "mestre", meaning "master", and "ayer", meaning "to cultivate" or "to work". In English, "metayer" refers to a sharecropper or tenant farmer who pays a portion of the harvest as rent to the landowner.

Similar spelling words for METAYER


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