Term of the day: quarter-day

Travel obligations and internet issues are going to be interfering with daily posts for at least some of the next 10 days to two weeks. So nobody will go into withdrawal, however, The Legal Genealogist offers…

The term of the day:

QUARTER-DAY.

quarter.day“The four days in the year upon which, by law or custom, moneys payable in quarter-yearly installments are collectible, are called ‘quarter-days.’”1

For a bit more detail, there’s this more complete explanation:

In British and Irish tradition, the quarter days were the four dates in each year on which servants were hired, and rents were due. They fell on four religious festivals roughly three months apart and close to the two solstices and two equinoxes.

The significance of quarter days is now limited, although leasehold payments and rents for land and premises in England are often still due on the old English quarter days.

The quarter days have been observed at least since the Middle Ages, and they ensured that debts and unresolved lawsuits were not allowed to linger on. Accounts had to be settled, a reckoning had to be made and publicly recorded on the quarter days.2

Quarter days. Not a quarter of a day.


SOURCES

  1. Henry Campbell Black, A Dictionary of Law (St. Paul, Minn. : West, 1891), 976, “Quarter day.”
  2. Wikipedia (http://www.wikipedia.com), “Quarter days,” rev. 15 July 2013.
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2 Responses to Term of the day: quarter-day

  1. Rondina says:

    I like this definition thing while your busy. We’re still going to learn something.

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