- (in Anglo-Saxon law)
- a fine imposed by a king or lord on a subject who committed a serious crime.
- a fee demanded for granting a special privilege.
- Chiefly Scot. responsibility for a crime, fault, or misfortune; blame.
- Chiefly Scot. to blame for; declare guilty of.
Origin of wite1
before 900; (noun) Middle English, Old English wīte penalty; cognate with Old High German wīzi, Old Norse vīti; (v.) Middle English witen, Old English wītan to blame
- a present plural of wit2.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for wites
Other crimes became punishable by fines which took the place of wites.
Being a grant of wites, it will not extend to the bootless the unemendable crimes.
Very easy therefore is the transition from a right to wites to such jurisdiction as the feudal lord enjoys.