No lawyer will assert for any English subject a higher title than tenancy-in-fee, which bears the impress of holding and denies the assertion of ownership. The power of the nobles, the tenants-in-fee, was strengthened by an act passed in the reign of William and Mary, which altered the relation of landlord and tenant.

I have now concluded my brief sketch of the facts which seemed to me most important in tracing the history of LANDHOLDING IN ENGLAND, and laid before you not only the most vital changes, but also the principles which underlay them; and I shall have failed in conveying the ideas of my own mind if I have not shown you that at least from the Scandinavian or ANGLO-SAXON invasion, the ownership of land rested either in the people, or the Crown as representing the people: that individual proprietorship of land is not only unknown, but repugnant to the principles of the British Constitution; that the largest estate a subject can have is tenancy-in-fee, and that it is a holding and not an owning of the soil; and I cannot conceal from you the conviction which has impressed my mind, after much study and some personal examination of the state of proprietary occupants on the Continent, that the best interests of the nation, both socially, morally, and materially, will be promoted by a very large increase in the number of tenants-in-fee; which can be attained by the extension of principles of legistration now in active operation.