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90s Slang You Should Know


[bey-luh-wik] /ˈbeɪ ləˌwɪk/
the district within which a bailie or bailiff has jurisdiction.
a person's area of skill, knowledge, authority, or work:
to confine suggestions to one's own bailiwick.
Origin of bailiwick
1425-75; late Middle English, equivalent to baili- bailie + wick wick3
Related forms
subbailiwick, noun
2. domain, department, sphere, territory, turf. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for bailiwick
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • There was no longer any motive for occupying the bailiwick of Bergdorf when there were no Prussians in that quarter.

    Memoirs of Napoleon Bonaparte, Complete Louis Antoine Fauvelet de Bourrienne
  • Gimpy Gordon scuttled out of my bailiwick almost on a dead run.

    The Big Fix George Oliver Smith
  • Carolyn May was quite as much puzzled by that expression as she had been by bailiwick.

    Carolyn of the Corners Ruth Belmore Endicott
  • You must keep out of her bailiwick if you want to keep her friendship.

    The Little Colonel: Maid of Honor Annie Fellows Johnston
  • "But the galley now lies in this river, which is within my bailiwick," retorted Brakkeleye stoutly.

    The Winning of the Golden Spurs Percy F. Westerman
  • But would she not find me, instead, and drive me out of her bailiwick?

    Wood Folk at School William J. Long
  • In 1733 the bailiwick was transferred to Vevey and just seventy years later the castle became the property of Vaud.

    The Spell of Switzerland Nathan Haskell Dole
  • Meere succeeded at the assizes in sustaining his right to the bailiwick.

    Sir Walter Ralegh William Stebbing
  • This guy, Lester, makes out a bond before we're within two days' drive of his bailiwick.

    Square Deal Sanderson Charles Alden Seltzer
British Dictionary definitions for bailiwick


(law) the area over which a bailiff has jurisdiction
a person's special field of interest, authority, or skill
Word Origin
C15: from baili(e) + wick²
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for bailiwick

"district of a bailiff," early 15c., baillifwik, from bailiff (q.v.) + Middle English form of Old English wic "village" (see wick (n.2)). Figurative sense of "one's natural or proper sphere" is first recorded 1843.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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