This term 'tenant' originated from the feudal system, when lords as landowners held land for a certain period of time.

Under the feudal system all land belonged to the king and was lent out to the lords.  The lords did not own the land but held tenure in the land. 

Hence a tenant is a person to whom the landlord grants temporary and exclusive use of land or building in exchange for a consideration (benefit) usually a rent.

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