Jurisdiction as Property: Franchise Jurisdiction from Henry Iii to James I

36 Pages Posted: 11 Oct 2006

See all articles by Nicholas Szabo

Nicholas Szabo

George Washington University Law School

Date Written: April 21, 2006


In medieval and renaissance England jurisdictions were often held as property. Relationships between these jurisdictions were property relations. The basic laws of jurisdiction were trespass and title. Infringement of a jurisdiction was a trespass, and abuse of a defendant by a court could be a trespass. In addition, the king could use his writ of right to challenge title to a franchise. In determining title, a crucial idea was seisin, which for franchises generally meant proper and continual use, and for jurisdictions in particular came to mean the following of proper procedure. Defense of trespass by and seisin of a franchise court came to imply obligations of protecting individual rights and serving the public good as well as private gain. Thus the property relations between franchises played a significant role in the development of English jurisdictional and procedural law.

Keywords: jurisdiction, property, trespass, procedure, due process, franchise, history

Suggested Citation

Szabo, Nicholas, Jurisdiction as Property: Franchise Jurisdiction from Henry Iii to James I (April 21, 2006). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=936314 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.936314

Nicholas Szabo (Contact Author)

George Washington University Law School ( email )

Washington, DC
United States

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