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Freedom of the City. The. Freedom of the City may be obtained: 1. By servitude—that to say, by having been bound to a Freeman, according to the custom of the City, and served duly and truly seven years. 2. By patrimony —that is, being the son or daughter (unmarried or widow) of a Freeman, born after the admission of the father, and twenty-one years of age. 3. By Gift of the City, or Honorary Freedom. 4. By redemption or purchase. The sons of aliens, born in England, are now admitted under the same conditions as natural-born subjects.
Charles Dickens (Jr.), Dickens's Dictionary of London, 1879