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cess1

[ses]
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noun
  1. British. a tax, assessment, or lien.
  2. (in Scotland) a land tax.
  3. (in Ireland) a military assessment.
  4. (in India) an import or sales tax on a commodity.
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verb (used with object)
  1. British. to tax; assess.
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Origin of cess1

1400–50; late Middle English; aphetic variant of obsolete assess assessment, noun use of assess (v.)

cess2

[ses]
noun Irish English Informal.
  1. luck (usually used in the expression bad cess to): Bad cess to them!
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Origin of cess2

First recorded in 1855–60; perhaps aphetic variant of success
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for cesses

Historical Examples

  • The washing water and chloride of lime are then to be worked down the gutters, into the sinks, cesses, or natural watercourses.

    On the cattle plague: or, Contagious typhus in horned cattle. Its history, origin, description, and treatment

    Honor Bourguignon


British Dictionary definitions for cesses

cess1

noun
  1. British any of several special taxes, such as a land tax in Scotland
  2. (formerly, in Ireland)
    1. the obligation to provide the soldiers and household of the lord deputy with supplies at fixed prices
    2. any military exaction
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verb
  1. (tr) British to tax or assess for taxation
  2. (formerly in Ireland) to impose (soldiers) upon a population, to be supported by them
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Word Origin

C16: short for assessment

cess2

noun
  1. an Irish slang word for luck bad cess to you!
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Word Origin

C19: probably from cess 1 (sense 2)

cess3

noun
  1. short for cesspool
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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

Word Origin and History for cesses

cess

n.

"tax, levy," 1530s, short for assess (q.v.).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper