- A hereditary tenant farmer whose status differed little from that of a slave. Though technically free and with some legal rights (e.g., they could not be ejected from their land), they were bound to the soil in perpetuity. Their freedom to marry was restricted, and they could not join the army. The origin of the colonus lies in the unsettled conditions of the second half of the third century. It was then that many free peasants sought the protection of wealthy landowners to whom they transferred the ownership of their land in return for physical protection and payment of their taxes. The state seems to have worked with magnates to make this informal process a legal one that made the coloni chattel who were tied to their land, all in the interest of securing a stable base of agricultural workers. Coloni were a fact of agricultural life throughout the empire from the fourth through the sixth centuries, their conditions varying from province to province. In the East, coloni disappear after the sixth century. In the West, the coloni became the serfs of the Middle Ages.
Historical Dictionary of Byzantium . John H. Rosser .
Look at other dictionaries:
Colōnus — (v. lat.), so v. w. Colonist … Pierer's Universal-Lexikon
Colōnus — (lat.), in der Sprache der Quellen des römischen Rechts: 1) der Pächter; C. partiarius, der Pächter, der als Pachtzins einen Teil der Früchte dem Verpachter gibt. 2) Der halbfreie Grundhold der römischen Kaiserzeit, der glebae adscriptus (an die… … Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon
Colonus — Colōnus (lat.), Landbauer, Kolone (s. Kolonat) … Kleines Konversations-Lexikon
Colonus — For a type of tenant farmer of the late Roman Empire, see Colonus (person). Colonus Κολωνός Neighborhood … Wikipedia
Colonus, S. — S. Colonus, C. (1. Dee.). Vom Lat. = Landwirth, Bauer etc. – Dieser hl. Colonus war ein Bekenner des Glaubens im Gebiete von Agen (Aginnum) in Aquitanien. (El.) … Vollständiges Heiligen-Lexikon
colonus — /keuh loh neuhs/, n., pl. coloni / nuy, nee/. a serf in the latter period of the Roman Empire or in the early feudal period. [1885 90; < L colonus inhabitant of a colony, tenant farmer, farmer, deriv. of colere to inhabit, till, cultivate; cf.… … Universalium
colonus — co•lo•nus [[t]kəˈloʊ nəs[/t]] n. pl. ni ( nī, nē). anh a serf or tenant farmer in the later Roman Empire or early feudal period • Etymology: 1885–90; < L colōnus inhabitant of a colony, tenant farmer, farmer, der. of colere to inhabit,… … From formal English to slang
colonus — noun (plural coloni) Etymology: Latin, literally, farmer Date: 1857 a free born serf in the later Roman Empire who could sometimes own property but who was bound to the land and obliged to pay a rent usually in produce … New Collegiate Dictionary
COLONUS — a demos of Attica, a mile NW. of Athens, the birthplace of Sophocles … The Nuttall Encyclopaedia
colonus — See colona … Etymological dictionary of grasses