A symbolical acknowledgment made by a feudal tenant to, and in the presence of, his lord, on receiving investiture of fee, or coming to it by succession, that he was his man, or vassal; profession of fealty to a sovereign.
The ceremony by which a vassal pledges his fealty to his liege, and acknowledges all other feudal obligations, in return for a grant of land. (MEDIEV-L. Medieval Terms) Acknowledgement by feudal tenant in return for his land that he is his lord's man (homme). (Sayles, George O. The King's Parliament of England, 144) A ceremony by which a man acknowledges himself to be the vassal of a lord; an act showing respect and deference, usually a preliminary step in the procedure by which a lord grants a fief to a vassal. (Hogue, Arthur R. Origins of the Common Law, 256)
The public pronouncement of a vassal to his lord where he swore to become ‘his man', an oath that carried a promise of loyalty. The homage ceremony, accomplished by placing the vassal's hands into that of the lord. In exchange, the lord pledged to protect and defend the vassal. The ceremony was distinct from, but often a part of, a fealty oath, wherein the vassal pledged to do a specified service in exchange for the land of fief. Both were highly personal and powerful oaths, which were meant to bind lord and vassal together. 15th century royal oath of homage (1365-1480)