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Law, culture, and Catholicism...up in smoke!

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

So, XH and XW are locked in a nasty custody battle over Wiseacre...

Saw this post on the Wall Street Journal's law blog today, and couldn't resist sharing. In case you're the one person in law school who wondered where the terms "Blackacre," "Greenacre," etc., came from...now you know.
Anyone who has spent any time in first year property remembers Blackacre, Greenacre and the like. I am told that the various colors indicated the use of the land in ages gone by. I think [Greenacre] indicated raising crops and [Blackacre] had something to do with mining. My last name is Whitaker, which comes from Whiteacre. I have tried unsuccessfully to find a list showing the various meanings for the real property used for hypotheticals. Black's Law Dictionary was no help. So, my totally trivial question - does any one have a list of the x acres for our amusement?

Thanks for the note, Ms. Whiteacre, er, Whitaker. Our crack Wikipedia research tells us that the late UCLA property law professor Jesse Dukeminier traces the use of these words to Sir Edward Coke, responsible for another property classic - "a man's home is his castle." Dukeminier suggested that the terms might come from crops ("peas and beans are black, corn and potatoes are white, hay is green").