from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A dwelling-house with the adjacent buildings and curtilage, including garden and orchard, appropriated to the use of the household; a manor-house and its appendages.
The family continued to inhabit this new messuage until about fifty years before the commencement of our history, when it was much damaged by a casual fire.
It is appended to a deed (preserved in the Public Record Office) dated in the ninth year of Edward the Third, whereby Walter de Grendene, clerk, sold to Margaret, his mother, one messuage, a barn and four acres of ground in the parish of Kingston-on-Thames.
Continuing along the road as we studied the home, we were led around to the landward front and into the midst of the ancient messuage.
This word comes from the Latin 'messuagium,' which is probably a derivative of ‘mansus,’ dwelling house; amount of land sufficient for a family.