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In ecclesiastical law, one of the formalities by which an archbishop confirms the election of a bishop. During the feudal ages, the rite by which an overlord granted a portion of his lands to his vassal.

The investiture ceremony, which took place in the presence of other vassals, consisted of the vassal taking an oath of fealty to the overlord who, in turn, gave him a clod of dirt or a twig, symbolic of the open and notorious transfer of possession of the land. The ritual, used at a time when writing and record keeping were not widely practiced, fixed the date of the vassal's acquisition of the land and, in cases of disputes over the land, provided a source of evidence in the form of testimony of the vassals who witnessed the proceedings.



See: assignment, delegation, deputation, installation

INVESTITURE, estates. The act of giving possession of lands by actual seisin When livery of seisin was made to a person by the common law he was invested with the whole fee; this, the foreign feudists and sometimes 'our own law writers call investiture, but generally speaking, it is termed by the common law writers, the seisin of the fee. 2 Bl. Com. 209, 313; Feame on Rem. 223, n. (z).
     2. By the canon law investiture was made per baculum et annulum, by the ring and crosier, which were regarded as symbols of the episcopal jurisdiction. Ecclesiastical and secular fiefs were governed by the same rule in this respect that previously to investiture, neither a bishop, abbey or lay lord could take possession of a fief. conferred upon them previously to investiture by the prince.
     3. Pope Gregory VI. first disputed the right of sovereigns to give investiture of ecclesiastical fiefs, A. D. 1045, but Pope Gregory VII. carried. on the dispute with much more vigor, A. D. 1073. He excommunicated the emperor, Henry IV. The Popes Victor III., Urban II. and Paul II., continued the contest. This dispute, it is said, cost Christendom sixty- three battles, and the lives of many millions of men. De Pradt.

References in periodicals archive ?
Yes, the failure of the investiture could have hardened government against post-poll talks!
Brian Jones from Sunderland is made an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) by the Prince of Wales at an Investiture ceremony at Buckingham Palace
If Rajoy can garner the support he needs from a cluster of other smaller parties to form a realistic government proposal, he will hold an investiture ballot.
Three years and one day ago, the last UO president, Michael Gottfredson, celebrated his investiture.
It was an honour and great pleasure to attend the investiture with my family to receive the medal from Prince Charles," said Mr Goodwin.
The citation read out at the investiture ceremony, inter alia states, that "during [General Weerasooriya's] ambassadorial assignment, he played a key role in strengthening and deepening Pakistan-Sri Lanka friendly cooperative ties, including the signing of a Free Trade Agreement between the two countries.
tat au ministere des Affaires etrangeres a transferai la felicitation du president de la Republique, Marechal Omer Al-Bashir au President de la Republique du Chili a l'occasion de son election et l' investiture President de la Republique du Chili et la formation du nouveau gouvernement exprimant l'espoir de renforcer les liens bilaterale entre les deux pays.
The actress played down her achievements over the decades after the Windsor Castle investiture ceremony and joked: "It is amazing, it's marvellous recognition for keeping at it for as long as I have, but also for the charities.
The Gavin and Stacey star was one of 80 people who Her Majesty honoured at an investiture ceremony at Windsor Castle.
The comic actor was presented with the honour during a Buckingham Palace investiture ceremony.
The article also revealed that the Prince of Wales staged a dress rehearsal to teach Prince William the intricacies of hosting an investiture, and it included a sword being sent especially from London.
PRINCE Charles showed William how to get into the swing of things when it came to granting knighthoods ahead of his son's first investiture service.