This chapter examines the divergence between popular conceptions of property and its legal reality, and explains why this disparity is particularly puzzling in light of our expectations about how law and social beliefs interact. It identifies three narratives drawing from different field's law and economics, biology and psychology, and behavioral economics and shows how each of them play a part in explaining this puzzle. The gap between the practical reality of property and popular conceptions of the institution is puzzling. The essentialist story described in the chapter is about property adds something that the previous welfarist narrative lacked. Welfarism, with its rational-actor and utility-maximizing assumptions, can explain why owners strongly prefer property absolutism, but it cannot explain why non-owners also do so. Cognitive psychological research has shown that people display a strong tendency against moving from initial baselines.