• WordNet 3.6
    • n constable a lawman with less authority and jurisdiction than a sheriff
    • n constable a police officer of the lowest rank
    • n Constable English landscape painter (1776-1837)
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

Village Constable Village Constable
Sporting Constable Sporting Constable
The Constable Made his Entry on Horseback——150 The Constable Made his Entry on Horseback——150

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Constable A high officer in the monarchical establishments of the Middle Ages.
    • Constable (Law) An officer of the peace having power as a conservator of the public peace, and bound to execute the warrants of judicial officers.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n constable An officer of high rank in several of the medieval monarchies. The Lord High Constable of England was the seventh officer of the crown. He had the care of the common peace in deeds of arms and matters of war, being a judge of the court of chivalry, or court of honor. To this officer, and to the earl marshal, belonged the cognizance of contracts touching deeds of arms without the realm, and combats and blazonry within the realm. His power was so great, and was often used to such improper ends, that it was abridged by the 13th Richard II., and was afterward forfeited in the person of Edward Stafford, Duke of Buckingham, in the reign of Henry VIII. It has never been granted to any person since that time, except on a particular occasion. The office of Lord High Constable of Scotland is one of great antiquity and dignity. He had formerly the command of the king's armies while in the field, in the absence of the king. He was likewise judge of all crimes or offenses committed within four miles of the king's person, or within the same distance of the parliament or of the privy council, or of any general convention of the states of the kingdom. The office has been hereditary since 1314 in the family of Hay, earls of Erroll, and is expressly reserved in the treaty of union. The Constable of France was the first officer of the kings of France, and ultimately became commander-in-chief of the army and the highest judge in all questions of chivalry and honor. This office was suppressed in 1627. Napoleon reëstablished it during a few years, in favor of his brother Louis Bonaparte. The constable of a castle was the keeper or governor of a castle belonging to the king or a great noble. This office was often hereditary; thus, there were constables or hereditary keepers of the Tower, of Normandy, and of the castles of Windsor, Dover, etc.
    • n constable An officer chosen to aid in keeping the peace, and to serve legal process in cases of minor importance. In England constables of hundreds, or high constables (now in many districts called chief constables), are appointed either at quarter-sessions or by the justices of the hundred out of sessions; petty constables, or constables of vills or tithings, are annually sworn into the office at quarter-sessions for each parish, upon presentment of the vestry, and are subordinate to the high or chief constables. In the United States the constable is an official of a town or village, elected with the other local officers, or, as a special constable, acting under a temporary appointment. The constable was formerly of much more consequence both in England and the colonies, being the chief executive officer of the parish or town.
    • n constable To live beyond one's means. In this latter sense also overrun the constable.
    • n constable The commander of a constabulary or company of men-at-arms.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Constable kun′sta-bl formerly a state-officer of the highest rank: the warden of a castle: a peace-officer: a policeman
    • adj Constable of or pertaining to constables, or peace-officers
    • ***


  • William Shakespeare
    “You are thought here to be the most senseless and fit man for the constable of the watch, therefore bear you the lantern.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
OE. conestable, constable, a constable (in sense 1), OF. conestable, F. connétable, LL. conestabulus, constabularius, comes stabuli, orig., count of the stable, master of the horse, equerry; comes, count (L. companion) + L. stabulum, stable. See Count a nobleman, and Stable


In literature:

You and I must get Uncle Moses Jones elected constable.
"The Brass Bound Box" by Evelyn Raymond
Mrs Constable, in a pale shade of gray, was altogether charming; and nothing could excel the courteous manners of George Lennox.
"Hollyhock" by L. T. Meade
On the front seat beside the driver were the constable and Jason Sparr.
"Dave Porter and the Runaways" by Edward Stratemeyer
"A Boy's Town" by W. D. Howells
During Scarlett's speech four mounted constables have wended their way through the groups of diggers standing in the street.
"The Tale of Timber Town" by Alfred Grace
Constable Doyle says they were together for half an hour.
"The Valley of Silent Men" by James Oliver Curwood
Charleston's constable took the slayer into custody.
"When the West Was Young" by Frederick R. Bechdolt
They entered the office, where just then no one was present except the magistrate, one clerk and two constables.
"Victor's Triumph" by Mrs. E. D. E. N. Southworth
He desired only to be allowed to say a few words, which the constables permitted.
"Bunyan" by James Anthony Froude
In a city in the neighborhood of Kaiutschou there once lived a constable by the name of Dung.
"The Chinese Fairy Book" by Various

In poetry:

EMILY JANE was a nursery maid,
JAMES was a bold Life Guard,
JOHN was a constable, poorly paid
(And I am a doggerel bard).
"Emily, John, James, and I" by William Schwenck Gilbert
But if you are a portly man,
Put on your fiercest frown,
And talk about a constable
To turn them out of town;
Then close your sentence with an oath,
And shut the window down!
"The Music-Grinders" by Oliver Wendell Holmes
But Constable Clark did not look very jolly,
He had no excuse for such absolute folly;
He admitted the girls were just out on a spree,
And hoped that His Worship would set them both free.
"The Maids of the Mountains" by Anonymous Oceania
But I got into trouble that very same night!
Being drunk in the street I got into a fight,
A constable seized me - I gave him a box -
And was put in the watch house and then in the stocks.
"The Lass in the Female Factory" by Anonymous Oceania
Now all the racks poor Thomas feels
Of constables about his heels.
A dreadful prison's on his right;
A wife as dreadful comes in sight:
A halter he began to see
Ah! the most dreadful of the three!
"The Parrish Wedding" by William Hutton
So I cleared the inn of wine,
And I tried to climb the sign,
And I tried to hail the constable as "Marion."
But he said I couldn't speak,
And he bowled me to the Beak
Because I was a Happy Vegetarian.
"The Logical Vegetarian" by Gilbert Keith Chesterton

In news:

Constable accused of rape released, won't be charged.
Former Constable Rust's trial pushed back to Wednesday.
Tyler, tx — The trial for former Precinct 3 Constable Dustin Rust is now slated to begin on Wednesday, October 3.
There's a surprise in that criminal probe of Victor Trevino's constables office.
The county attorney says his office has done a lot to clean up the constables ' operations.
Jones, 50, of Trophy Club is a reserve deputy with the Precinct 4 constable 's office in southern Denton County.
After the recount, Diaz, who also is a reserve deputy for the Precinct 3 constable 's office, leads 2,079 votes to 2,062 votes.
Constables typically work on commission, so having another office close by meant competition for the fees constables earn by serving court documents and evictions.
The service for Brazos County Constable Brian Bachmann will be held Saturday afternoon at Reed Arena on the A&M campus in College Station.
Tommy Myrick, a pastor at the constable 's church, said Bachmann hated serving evictions and when he would have to put someone out of their home, he would do whatever he could to find them a new one.
Constable 's funeral Saturday at Texas A&M's Reed Arena.
During Bachmann's campaign for constable he said that he wanted to bring constables back to the community.
A veteran Brazos County constable , a bystander and the alleged shooter all died in yesterdays shocking gun battle in College Station.
An Allen Parish constable was killed in an on- duty crash on Dec 5.
The criminal mischief charge against Vogt, a former constable, later was dismissed.

In science:

We also thank Marc Spradlin and Anastasia Volovich for reading the manuscript and acknowledge useful discussions with Neil Constable, Alfred Goldhaber, and Lubos Motl.
Instability and Degeneracy in the BMN Correspondence
Constable, School of Mathematics and Statistics, University of St.
A Non-potential Model for the Sun's Open Magnetic Flux
Simaika, Long-Term Storage: An Experimental Study, Constable, London, 1965.
Statistical Methods for Estimating the non-random Content of Financial Markets
Simaika, Long-Term Storage: An Experimental Study, Constable, London, 1965.
About the non-random Content of Financial Markets
The terrestrial magnetic field, blamed on the core, has been dropping about 5% per century since 1840 (after 2.5 centuries of constancy), as a result of patches of reverse flux in the southern hemisphere, but it is not about to flip (Constable and Korte 2006).
Astrophysics in 2006