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Law Dictionary Home Dictionary Definition timber

Timber, has an enlarged or restricted sense, according to the connection in which it is employed, and may refer to standing trees or wood suitable for the manufacture of lumber to be used for building and allied purposes, Corpus Juris Secundum, Vol. 54, p. 1. Timber, may be used in a restricted as well as enlarged sense. In the restricted sense it means specified trees like oak, ash, elm, teace, blackwood, ebony etc. and in the enlarged sense it means woods suitable for building, furniture, and carpentry etc., and includes standing trees. Its true meaning has to be determined from the context in which it is employed, Divisional Forest Officer v. Tata Finlay Ltd., AIR 2001 SC 2672. [See also Kerala Grants and Leases (Modification of Rights) Act, 1980, s. 4] Means at common law oak, ash and elm are timber if over twenty years old, but not so old as to have unusable wood in them. Other trees may be timber by the custom of the country. Thus beech is timber by the custom of Buckinghamshire and Parts of Gloucestershire. Aspen and horse chestnut are timber in some counties. Trees less than six inches in diameter have been said not to be timber, Halsbury's Law of England, 4th Edn., Vol. 19, p. 21. It means building material, timber, wood suitable for building or for use in carpentry; the wood of growing trees suitable for structural uses: growing trees themselves; a single beam or piece of wood forming or capable of forming part of a structure, (New Webster's Dictionary); See also Divisional Forest Officer v. Tata Finlay Ltd., (2001) 5 SCC 684. Timber, wood felled for building or other suchlike use; in a legal sense it generally means oak, ash, and elm, but in some parts of the country is used in a wider sense, which is recognized by the law. Until extinguishment as provided by Part VI. of the Law of Property Act, 1922 (see COPYHOLD), the lord's right to timber on copyhold land remained as an incident of the enfranchised tenure. The right was the whole value if the lord could enter and remove the timber, otherwise half the value. Co. Litt. 53 a; 1 Rol. Abr. 649. See Dashwood v. Magniac, (1891) 3 Ch 306; Sugd. V. and P. 26; Woodf. L. and T.; TREE; and WASTE. Carrige of Timber.'s. 61 of the Merchant Shipping (Safety and Load Line Conventions) Act, 1932 (see DECK CARGO), provides for timber cargo regula-tions as to how timber is to be carried. It includes trees when they have fallen or have been felled, and all wood whether cut up or fashioned or hollowed out for any purpose or not. [Indian Forest Act, 1927, s. 2 (6)] The word 'timber' may be used in a restricted as well as enlarged sense. In the restricted sense it means specified trees like oak, ash, elm, teak, blackwood, ebony, Karumthali etc. and in the enlarged sense it means woods suitable for building, furniture and carpentry etc., and includes standing trees. Its true meaning has to be determined from the context in which it is employed. In this connection it will be appropriate to refer to s. 3 of the 1980 Act which specified the terms and conditions of the grants and leases of lands to which the Act applies. A perusal of Clause (a) in the light of the meaning of 'timber', noted above, shows that the word 'timber' is used in s. 4 of the 1980 Act, in the enlarged sense to mean trees other than teak, blackwood, ebony, Karumthali etc., and in that sense it includes standing eucalyptus trees, Divisional Forest Officer v. Tata Finlay Ltd., AIR 2001 SC 2672 (2676): (2001) 5 SCC 684. See also AIR 1985 SC 1293 (1310). [Kerala Grants and leases Modification of Rights) Act, 1980 (16 of 1980), s. 4 and 3(a)]

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