AskDefine | Define laird

Dictionary Definition

laird n : a landowner

User Contributed Dictionary

English

Pronunciation

  • a UK: /leə(ɹ)d/, /lE@d/

Noun

  1. The owner of a Scottish estate; a landlord

Extensive Definition

A Laird is a hereditary title for the owner of a landed estate in Scotland. The title of Laird may carry certain local or feudal rights, though unlike a Lordship, a Lairdship has never carried voting rights, either in the historic Parliament of Scotland or, after unification with the Kingdom of England, in the British House of Lords.
Though traditionally translated as "Lord", Laird is not a title of nobility. Unlike Lord of the Manor titles, the title of laird is a 'corporeal heriditament' (an inheritable property that has an explicit tie to the physical land), i.e. the title can not be held in gross, and can not be bought and sold without selling the physical land. Though the title Laird is not gender specific, in more recent times some female Lairds have opted to use the title Lady instead.
Addressing a Laird
  1. Laird [Personal name] of [Lairdship] or
  2. Lady [Personal name] of [Lairdship]
A definite article is not used and the "of" must be retained to distinguish from titles of the nobility. In some cases Laird is translated as Lord but this can cause confusion.
laird in Danish: Laird
laird in German: Laird
laird in French: Laird
laird in Polish: Laird szkocki
laird in Russian: Лэрд
laird in Finnish: Laird
laird in Swedish: Laird

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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