Laws of inheritance were precise in ancient Israel, and gave priority to the eldest son (Deut. 21:17) of a man's wife, and therefore by rights Esau rather than Jacob was entitled to his father's blessing (Gen. 27:36). Cf. Luke 15:31. However, it was possible for a daughter also to inherit (Job 42:15) provided that she did not marry outside the tribe (Num. 27:1–8). If there were no children, the brother of the deceased came into the inheritance.
Paul uses the principle of inheritance to describe a person's relationship to God (Rom. 8:16–17; cf. Heb. 9:15).

Dictionary of the Bible.

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  • heir — / ar/ n: one who inherits or is entitled to succeed to the possession of property after the death of its owner: as a: one who by operation of law inherits the property and esp. the real property of a person who dies without leaving a valid will… …   Law dictionary

  • Heir — ([^a]r), n. [OE. heir, eir, hair, OF. heir, eir, F. hoir, L. heres; of uncertain origin. Cf. {Hereditary}, {Heritage}.] 1. One who inherits, or is entitled to succeed to the possession of, any property after the death of its owner; one on whom… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • heir — [eə ǁ er] noun [countable] LAW the person who has the legal right to receive another person s money, property, or business after that person has died: heir to • Taki is heir to a Greek shipping fortune. * * * heir UK US /eər/ noun [C] ► LAW …   Financial and business terms

  • heir — c.1300, from Anglo Fr. heir, O.Fr. oir heir, successor, from L. heredem (nom. heres) heir, heiress (see HEREDITY (Cf. heredity)). Heir apparent (late 14c.) has the French order of noun adjective, though it was not originally so written in English …   Etymology dictionary

  • heir — An heir apparent is an heir whose claim cannot be set aside by the birth of another heir. An heir presumptive is an heir whose claim may be set aside if another heir with a stronger claim is born. Heir apparent is often used now of a person… …   Modern English usage

  • heir — [ er ] noun count ** 1. ) someone who will receive money, property, or a title when another person dies: a real estate heir heir to: Hesketh was the heir to a grocery fortune. heir to the throne (=the next king or queen): Richard was now heir to… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • heir — [eə US er] n [Date: 1300 1400; : Old French; Origin: Latin heres] 1.) the person who has the legal right to receive the property or title of another person when they die heir to ▪ John was the sole heir to a vast estate. heir to the throne (=the… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Heir — Heir, v. t. To inherit; to succeed to. [R.] [1913 Webster] One only daughter heired the royal state. Dryden. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • heir — [n] person who inherits possessions beneficiary, crown prince/princess, devisee, grantee, heritor, inheritor, next in line, scion, successor; concepts 355,414 Ant. heiress …   New thesaurus

  • heir — ► NOUN 1) a person legally entitled to the property or rank of another on that person s death. 2) a person who continues the work of a predecessor. DERIVATIVES heirship noun. ORIGIN Old French, from Latin heres …   English terms dictionary

  • heir — [er] n. [ME < OFr < L heres: see HEREDITY] 1. a person who inherits or is legally entitled to inherit, through the natural action of the law, another s property or title upon the other s death 2. anyone who receives property of a deceased… …   English World dictionary