Feudal law required that the king should take seisin of the earldom before regranting it and receiving the homage, and the sheriff of Ayr was directed to take it on Baliol's behalf.
The disabilities under which a feudal owner very frequently lay gave rise to the practice of conveying land by other methods than that of feoffment with livery of seisin, that is, a handing over of the feudal possession.
The essential elements were livery of seisin (delivery of possession), which consisted in formally giving to the feoffee on the land a clod or turf, or a growing twig, as a symbol of the transfer of the land, and words by the feoffor declaratory of his intent to deliver possession to the feoffee with a "limitation" of the estate intended to be transferred.
Experience, however, has 1 Up to the middle of the 15th century "seisin " was applied to chattels equally with freeholds, the word " possessed " being rarely used.
P. 324 and " The Mystery of Seisin," Law Q.
On the 12th of October 1352 Henry Sturmy of Elvetham, sheriff and escheator of Hants, and frequently a justice in eyre for the forests of Hants and Wilts, at Winchester, describes William of Wykeham as "my clerk" in a power of attorney dated at Winchester, to deliver seisin of lands in Meonstoke Ferrand, Hants, which he had sold to William of Edyndon, bishop of Winchester (Win.
292, where the deed is also misdated 1353), his attorney to take seisin of lands in Meonstoke Tour, Hants, which he had bought from Alice de Roche, daughter of William of Tour (ibid.