chattel

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Middle English chatel, from Old French chatel, from Medieval Latin capitāle (English capital), from Latin capitālis ‎(of the head), from caput ‎(head) + -alis ‎(-al). Compare cattle ‎(cows), which is from an Anglo-Norman variant. Compare also capital and kith and kine ‎(all one’s possessions), which also use “cow” to mean “property”.

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

chattel ‎(plural chattels)

  1. Tangible, movable property.
    • 1990, Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, Good Omens, Corgi, p.387
      … although of course the firm had changed hands many times over the centuries, […] But the box has always been part of the chattels, as it were.
  2. A slave.

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