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Line breaks: feu¦dal
Pronunciation: /ˈfjuːd(ə)l

Definition of feudal in English:


1According to, resembling, or denoting the system of feudalism: the feudal system
More example sentences
  • After the Norman Conquest the system of feudal landholding required the lord of the manor to provide a court for his tenants.
  • The feudal system meant that knights had to provide the king with soldiers when the king demanded them.
  • The Viking Age ended when many states in Europe developed the feudal system.
1.1Absurdly outdated or old-fashioned: his view of patriotism was more than old-fashioned—it was positively feudal
More example sentences
  • We know it was feudal, backward and deeply conservative, in pressing need of reforms.
  • Why does Lee persist in this feudal and backward way of thinking as soon as he turns to talk about China?
  • The in-laws phoned my husband for months at times when they knew I probably would not be home, and harassed him endlessly with their feudal views of how he should shut up his rebellious wife.


early 17th century: from medieval Latin feudalis, from feudum (see fee).



Pronunciation: /-ˈzeɪʃ(ə)n/
Example sentences
  • Most of the key features of Scottish history, such as feudalisation, reformation and industrialisation, happened in other countries as well.
  • Extensive political and economic changes reflected the process of feudalization intrinsic to the Norman system of social administration and land use.
  • The result was the feudalization of government.


(also feudalise) verb
Example sentences
  • They were not thought of when charters were made and land was feudalised.
  • The south-eastern Highlands were more feudalized, and stood in contrast to what many contemporaries, including James VI, regarded as the real problem area: the Isles (until 1496 a separate lordship) and the western Highland mainland.
  • From the 11th century the Normans colonized and feudalized much of Wales and Romanized the Church, but the native Welsh retained their own laws and tribal organization.


Example sentences
  • The ‘historicising’ approach, the aristocratic strangeness of a highly artificial, elaborate, feudally coded language, falls away.
  • Like Thatcher, who learnt this game from traditional Labour, Welsh socialism talked all too easily and feudally about ‘our people’.
  • The fact that feudal tenure commonly served an ostensibly military purpose, that of providing armed men for a lord's host, licensed kings to express their superior lordship by manipulating the descent of feudally held lands.

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