noun \ˈprä-pər-tē\

: something that is owned by a person, business, etc.

: a piece of land often with buildings on it that is owned by a person, business, etc.

: a special quality or characteristic of something

plural prop·er·ties

Full Definition of PROPERTY

a :  a quality or trait belonging and especially peculiar to an individual or thing
b :  an effect that an object has on another object or on the senses
c :  virtue 3
d :  an attribute common to all members of a class
a :  something owned or possessed; specifically :  a piece of real estate
b :  the exclusive right to possess, enjoy, and dispose of a thing :  ownership
c :  something to which a person or business has a legal title
d :  one (as a performer) who is under contract and whose work is especially valuable
e :  a book or script purchased for publication or production
:  an article or object used in a play or motion picture except painted scenery and costumes
prop·er·ty·less \-ləs\ adjective
prop·er·ty·less·ness \-nəs\ noun

Examples of PROPERTY

  1. We are not responsible for the loss of personal property.
  2. He was trying to sell stolen property.
  3. He was caught trespassing on private property.
  4. She owns all sorts of property around town.
  5. The students were caught smoking on school property.
  6. He owns several valuable properties in the area.
  7. a developer of commercial properties
  8. One of the properties of helium is its lightness.
  9. A unique property of garlic is its strong odor.
  10. The two plants have similar physical properties.

Origin of PROPERTY

Middle English proprete, from Anglo-French propreté, from Latin proprietat-, proprietas, from proprius own
First Known Use: 14th century

Related to PROPERTY

parcel, plat, plot, lot, tract
See Synonym Discussion at quality

Other Economics Terms

actuary, compound interest, globalization, indemnity, portfolio, rentier, stagflation, usurer


noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

In law, something that is owned or possessed. Concepts of property vary widely among cultures. In the West, property is generally regarded as either tangible (e.g., land or goods) or intangible (e.g., stocks and bonds or a patent). Individual ownership of property is emphasized in Western societies, whereas in many non-Western societies property ownership is deemphasized or conceived on a more strictly communal basis. The use of property is extensively regulated throughout the West. Landowners injured by adjoining land uses may sue in nuisance in Anglo-American countries; similar actions exist in civil-law countries. Throughout the West, landowners may agree to allow others to use their land in ways that would otherwise be actionable, and such agreements may be made to bind those to whom the land is conveyed. Anglo-American law tends to divide these grants of use rights into categories that reflect their common-law origins: easements (such as rights of way), profits (such as the right to take minerals or timber), real covenants (such as a promise to pay a homeowners' association fee), and equitable servitudes (such as a promise to use the property for residential purposes only). The civil law has fewer categories, the general category “servitudes” tending to cover for them all, and is a bit more restrictive. A common means of acquiring property is by transfer from the previous owner or owners. Such transfers include sales, donations, and inheritance. See also adverse possession; community property; intellectual property; prescription; real and personal property.


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