Definition of mortmain
1 a : an inalienable possession of lands or buildings by an ecclesiastical or other corporation b : the condition of property or other gifts left to a corporation in perpetuity especially for religious, charitable, or public purposes
2 : the influence of the past regarded as controlling the present
Origin of mortmain
Middle English morte-mayne, from Anglo-French mortmain, from morte (feminine of mort dead) + main hand, from Latin manus — more at manual
First Known Use: 15th century
Rhymes with mortmain
abstain, again, air lane, airplane, amain, arcane, arraign, attain, Bahrain, Bassein, Beltane, biplane, birdbrain, block plane, bloodstain, boat train, brain drain, bugbane, campaign, champagne, champaign, Champlain, checkrein, chicane, chilblain, choke chain, chow mein, cinquain, cocaine, Cockaigne, Coltrane, coxswain, complain, constrain, contain, cordwain, cowbane, crackbrain, demesne, deplane, destain, detain, detrain, devein, disdain, distain, distrain, dogbane, domain, drivetrain, dumb cane, edge-grain, Elaine, enchain, enplane, entrain, ethane, explain, eyestrain, fast lane, fleabane, floatplane, floodplain, food chain, forebrain, Fort Wayne, Gawain, germane, Great Dane, grosgrain, half plane, henbane, hindbrain, house-train, humane, Hussein, Igraine, immane, inane, ingrain, insane, jack plane, lamebrain, left brain, lightplane, lo mein, long-chain, Lorraine, maintain, marchpane, membrane, methane, midbrain, migraine, Montaigne, montane, moraine, Moulmein, mundane, neck-rein, New Spain, obtain, octane, ordain, pertain, plain-Jane, profane, propane, ptomaine, purslane, quatrain, raise Cain, refrain, remain, restrain, retain, retrain, right brain, romaine, sailplane, sea-lane, seaplane, seatrain, split-brain, sustain, tailplane, tearstain, terrane, Touraine, towplane, triplane, Ukraine, unchain, urbane, vervain, vicereine, villein, volplane, warplane, wave train, wolfsbane
Learn More about mortmain
Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about "mortmain"
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