A peasant is an agricultural worker who subsists by working a small plot of ground. The word is derived from 15th century French païsant meaning one from the pays, or countryside. The term peasant today is sometimes used in a pejorative sense for impoverished farmers.
"There were free and unfree peasants. Free peasants could leave the manor as they wished. Unfree peasants had to buy their way out of the manor by paying their lord."