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Bóaire was a title given to a member of medieval and earlier Gaelic societies prior to the introductions of English law according to Early Irish law. The terms means a "Cow lord". Despite this a Bóaire was a "free-holder", and ranked below the noble grades but above the unfree. He would own a share of land, which he inherited from members of his kin and which he could not alienate without his kin's approval. He would normally have cattle given to him by a lord in exchange for entering into a clientship relationship.
Some texts give a number of different sub ranks such are the ócaire, young lord, and Mruighfer, land man which was the highest non-noble rank.
Despite lacking an actual noble title, a limited number of bóaire could have noble rank in fact either as the head of their kin group, or by performing services or acquiring wealth double that of a normal lord.
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