Tithingman

Definitions

  • Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Tithingman A parish officer elected annually to preserve good order in the church during divine service, to make complaint of any disorderly conduct, and to enforce the observance of the Sabbath.
    • Tithingman (Law) A peace officer; an under constable.
    • Tithingman (O. Eng. Law) The chief man of a tithing; a headborough; one elected to preside over the tithing.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n tithingman In old English law, the chief man of a tithing: same as headborough.
    • n tithingman In England, a peace-officer; an under-constable; in early New England hist., a town officer elected each year to exercise a general moral police (derived from the constabulary functions of the English tithing-man) in the town. Later his functions were nearly confined to preserving order during divine service and enforcing attendance upon it. An officer called the tithing-man, with similar moral police duties, was also, in the seventeenth century, chosen in Maryland manors.
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Usage

In literature:

She was very much afraid of the tithingman, who sat on a high seat.
"The Child's World" by Hetty Browne, Sarah Withers, W.K. Tate
Little Ben went to the South Church on Sundays, and the tithingman was there.
"True to His Home" by Hezekiah Butterworth
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