lease

1) A verb said to mean to glean, pick or gather (OED).

In the examples quoted here the grain was being sorted, a meaning that corresponds to the OED reference of 1703, attributed to the Yorkshire diarist Thoresby: 1580 Item payd at Stockeld the same daye for bering & leasing sede wheat iiijs xd

1619 New wheat leazed and threshed 42 stowks, Brandsby

1642 the charges he shalbe att for and aboute the leasinge, thrashing, wyneinge ... the same corne, Shipton

1665-6 in the latter end of harvest last [they] were leesing Rye togeather, Hatfield Woodhouse.

dates 1580 1619 1642 1665-1666

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2) Used of pasture land, but difficult to separate from the plural of 'lea' and 'ley ground'.

1398-9 'the farm of the pasture called les leeghes', Acaster Selby

1576 all such … landes leyes meddowes … in Slawghthwayte

1618 turned the gelding lowse in my Cow leaze where he ought not to goe, Brandsby

1668 they present Valentine Cletherow for putting his Sheepe into the leyes before they were common, Bridlington. It may be the element in minor names such as Woodsome Lees: 1566 Edmundus Brodeheade off Lees ultra Wodsom sepult, Almondbury. See EPNE11,18.

spellings leyes
dates 1398-1399 1566 1576 1618 1668

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Photo by Kreuzschnabel CC BY-SA 3.0