/tan"euh stree, thaw"neuh-/, n.
the system among various Celtic tribes of choosing a tanist.
[1590-1600; TANIST + -RY]

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▪ Celtic government
      a custom among various Celtic tribes—notably in Scotland and Ireland—by which the king or chief of the clan was elected by family heads in full assembly. He held office for life and was required by custom to be of full age, in possession of all his faculties, and without any remarkable blemish of mind or body. At the same time and subject to the same conditions, a tanist, or next heir to the chieftaincy, was elected, who, if the king died or became disqualified, at once became king. Sometimes the king's son became tanist, but not because the system of primogeniture was in any way recognized; indeed, the only principle adopted was that the dignity of chieftainship should descend to the eldest and most worthy of the same blood, who well could be a brother, nephew, or cousin. This system of succession left the headship open to the ambitious and was a frequent source of strife both in families and between the clans. Tanistry in Scotland was abolished by a legal decision in the reign of James I (1406–37) and the English system of primogeniture substituted.

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Universalium. 2010.

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  • Tanistry — was a system for passing on titles and lands. In this system the Tanist (Irish Tánaiste ; Scottish Gaelic Tànaiste ; Manx Tanishtagh ) was the office of heir apparent, or second in command, among the (royal) Gaelic patrilineal dynasties of… …   Wikipedia

  • Tanistry — (gäl. Tànaisteachd [ˈt̪ʰaːn̪ˠaʃtʃʲaxt̪], ir. Táinste [ˈt̪ˠaːnʲɕtʲə], Manx Tanishtagh [ˈtanʲɪʃtəx], deutsch Thanwahl, Anführerwahl oder Wahl des designierten Thronerbens/Nachfolgers, abgeleitet von gälisch tana (Herrschaft) und an tanaise… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Tanistry — Tan ist*ry, n. [See {Tanist}.] In Ireland, a tenure of family lands by which the proprietor had only a life estate, to which he was admitted by election. [1913 Webster] Note: The primitive intention seems to have been that the inheritance should… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Tanistry — Árbol genealógico de los primeros reyes escoceses. El tanistry era un sistema para heredar títulos y tierras. En este sistema, el tanista (irlandés Tánaiste; gaélico escocés Tànaiste; manx Tanishtagh) era el presunto heredero del monarca en… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Tanistry — Tanistrie La tanistrie est une loi de succession coutumière qui fut pratiquée sous une forme ou sous une autre par certains groupes celtes et pictes. Suivant cette coutume, le successeur d’un roi ou d’un chef de clan doit être choisi parmi sa… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • tanistry — noun A former form of tenure, in Scotland and Ireland, in which land was held for life and then passed to an elected member of the same family …   Wiktionary

  • TANISTRY —    a method of tenure which prevailed among the Gaelic Celts; according to this custom succession, whether in office or land, was determined by the family as a whole, who on the death of one holder elected another from its number; the practice… …   The Nuttall Encyclopaedia

  • tanistry — tan·ist·ry …   English syllables

  • tanistry — /ˈtænəstri/ (say tanuhstree) noun the system among various Celtic tribes of choosing a tanist …   Australian-English dictionary

  • tanistry — /tsnastriy/06n°/ In old Irish law, a species of tenure, founded on ancient usage, which allotted the inheritance of lands, castles, etc., to the oldest and worthiest man of the deceased s name and blood. It was abolished in the reign of James I …   Black's law dictionary

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