What does "mortgage" mean?

In the 17th and 18th centuries as people were going to the "new world", America, many of them couldn't afford the boat ride.

So to get to America, they would agree to be indentured servants. They would commit to work for someone for 3 to 7 years, and in the end they would be part of this new free world, at least that was the idea.

You see, in many cases, the indentured servant would become further indebted to their "employer" who would then agree to forgive that debt if they would stay on, many times indefinitely.

Today, we still have indentured servants, more like financial slaves really. But instead of being obligated for 7 years, it's 30, or more. And that's assuming you actually become debt free, but incidentally, many people won't see that day before they die.

In fact, dissect the word "mortgage" and what do you get? Well "mort" comes from the Latin word for death, and "gage" comes from Latin to mean pledge, so a mortgage effectively is a "death pledge", that's often the case.

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