Definition for FARM

FARM, n. [Sax. farma, fearm, or feorm, food, provisions, board, a meal, a diner or supper, hospitality, substance, goods, use, fruit. Hence, feormian, to supply provisions, to entertain; also, to purge or purify, to expiate, to avail, to profit. Arm. ferm, or feurm; in ancient laws, firma; Fr. ferme, a farm, or letting to farm, whence affermer, to hire or lease. The sense of feorm seems to be corn or provisions, in which formerly rents were paid. The radical sense of feorm, provisions, is probably produce, issues, from one of the verbs in Br; produce and purification both implying separation, a throwing off or out.]

  1. A tract of land leased on rent reserved; ground let to a tenant on condition of his paying a certain sum annually or otherwise for the use of it. A farm is usually such a portion of land as is cultivated by one man, and includes the buildings and fences. Rents were formerly paid in provisions, or the produce of land; but now they are generally paid in money. This is the signification of farm in Great Britain, where most of the land is leased to cultivators.
  2. In the United State, a portion or tract of land, consisting usually of grass land, meadow, pasture, tillage and woodland, cultivated by one man and usually owned by him in fee. A like tract of land under lease is called a farm; but most cultivators are proprietors of the land, and called farmers. A tract of new land, covered with forest, if intended to be cultivated by one man as owner, is also called a farm. A man goes into the new states, or into the unsettled country, to buy a farm, that is, land for a farm.
  3. The state of land leased on rent reserved; a lease. It is great willfulness in landlords to make any longer farms to their tenants. Spenser.

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