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frankpledge

[frangk-plej]
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noun Old English Law.
  1. a system of dividing a community into tithings or groups of ten men, each member of which was responsible for the conduct of the other members of his group and for the assurance that a member charged with a breach of the law would be produced at court.
  2. a member of a tithing.
  3. the tithing itself.

Origin of frankpledge

1250–1300; Middle English fra(u)nkplegge < Anglo-French frauncplege. See frank1, pledge
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for frankpledge

frankpledge

noun (in medieval England)
  1. the corporate responsibility of members of a tithing for the good behaviour of each other
  2. a member of a tithing
  3. a tithing itself

Word Origin

C15: via Anglo-French from Old French franc free (see frank) + plege pledge
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