serfdom

play
serf·dom \ ˈsərf-dəm , -təm \
Updated on: 11 Sep 2017

Definition of serfdom

:the condition of a tenant farmer bound to a hereditary plot of land and to the will of a landlord : the state or fact of being a serf
  • Despite obvious personal repugnance for serfdom, she enhanced the powers of nobles to demand more labor from their ill-treated and unorganized serfs.
  • —Carol S. Leonard
  • Servitude stretched from serfdom in Russia to the sugar plantations of the Caribbean to the indigenous slave systems in Africa that supplied both the Arabian and Atlantic trades.
  • —Adam Hochschild

First Known Use of serfdom

1837


Learn More about serfdom


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up serfdom? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

alert quickness of mind or body

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!