Stat. Merton20H. 3. c. 4. Lords may approve Common against their Neighbours, leaving them sufficient. Usurpation of Common during the Estate of particular Tenants.
Whereas in a Statute made at Merton, it was granted that Lords of Wastes, Woods, and Pastures, might approve the said Wastes, Woods, and Pastures, notwithstanding the Contradiction of their Tenants, so that the Tenants had sufficient Pasture to their Tenements with free [X2Egress and Regress to] the same: And Forasmuch as no Mention was made between [X3Neighbours and Neighbours,] many Lords of Wastes, Woods, and Pastures, have been hindered heretofore by the Contradiction of Neighbours having sufficient Pasture: And because foreign Tenants have no more Right to Common in the Wastes, Woods, or Pastures of any Lord than the Lord’s own Tenants; It is Ordained, That the Statute of Merton, provided between the Lord and his Tenants, from henceforth shall hold Place between Lords of Wastes, Woods, and Pastures, and their Neighbours; Saving sufficient Pasture to their Tenants and Neighbours, so that the Lords of such Wastes, Woods, and Pastures, may make Approvement of the Residue. And this shall be observed for such as claim Pasture as appurtenant to their Tenements. But if any do claim Common ( X4) by special Feoffment or Grant for a certain Number of Beasts, or otherwise [X5which] he ought to have of common Right, [X6whereas Covenant barreth the Law,] he shall have such Recovery as he ought to have had by Form of the Grant made unto him: By occasion of a Windmill, Sheepcote Deyry, inlarging of a Court necessary, or Courtelage, from henceforth no Man shall be grieved by Assise of Novel Disseisin for Common of Pasture . . . F2 And where one, having no Right to Common, usurpeth Common what Time an Heir is within Age, or a Woman is covert, or whilst the Pasture is in the Hands of Tenants in Dower, by the Courtesy, or otherwise for Term of Life or Years, or in Feetail, and have long Time used the Pasture, many hold opinion, that such Pastures ought to be said to belong to [X7the] Freehold, and that the Possessor ought to have Action by a Writ of Novel Disseisin, if he be deforced of such Pasture; but from henceforth this must be holden, that such as have entred within the Time that an Assise of Mortdauncestor [X8hath lien,] if they had no Common before, shall have no Recovery by a Writ of Novel Disseisin, if they be deforced.