Right of Way
(The). The legal right to make use of a certain passage whether high-road, by-road, or private road. Watercourses, ferries, rivers, etc., are included in the word “ways.” Private right of way may be claimed by immemorial usage, special permission, of necessity; but a funeral cortège or bridal party having passed over a certain field does not give to the public the right of way, as many suppose.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894