On sufferance
Sufferance Suf"fer*ance, n. [OE. suffrance, OF. sufrance, soufrance, F. souffrance, L. sufferentia, from sufferens, -entis, p. pr. of sufferre. See {Suffer}.] 1. The state of suffering; the bearing of pain; endurance. [1913 Webster]

He must not only die the death, But thy unkindness shall his death draw out To lingering sufferance. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

2. Pain endured; misery; suffering; distress. [1913 Webster]

The seeming sufferances that you had borne. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

3. Loss; damage; injury. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]

A grievous . . . sufferance on most part of their fleet. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

4. Submission under difficult or oppressive circumstances; patience; moderation. --Chaucer. [1913 Webster]

But hasty heat tempering with sufferance wise. --Spenser. [1913 Webster]

5. Negative consent by not forbidding or hindering; toleration; permission; allowance; leave. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

In their beginning they are weak and wan, But soon, through sufferance, grow to fearful end. --Spenser. [1913 Webster]

Somewhiles by sufferance, and somewhiles by special leave and favor, they erected to themselves oratories. --Hooker. [1913 Webster]

6. A permission granted by the customs authorities for the shipment of goods. [Eng.] [1913 Webster]

{Estate of sufferance} (Law), the holding by a tenant who came in by a lawful title, but remains, after his right has expired, without positive leave of the owner. --Blackstone.

{On sufferance}, by mere toleration; as, to remain in a house on sufferance. [1913 Webster]

Syn: Endurance; pain; misery; inconvenience; patience; moderation; toleration; permission. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • on sufferance — Tolerated with reluctance • • • Main Entry: ↑suffer * * * on sufferance phrase if you do something on sufferance, someone allows you to do it but does not really want you to do it You’re only here on sufferance, you know – as a guest. Thesaurus:… …   Useful english dictionary

  • on sufferance — if you do something on sufferance, someone allows you to do it but does not really want you to do it You re only here on sufferance, you know – as a guest …   English dictionary

  • on sufferance — adverb Unwillingly agreed to or barely tolerated. I wasnt whole hearted about the decision but couldnt think of a better one, so went along with it on sufferance for the time being …   Wiktionary

  • Sufferance — Suf fer*ance, n. [OE. suffrance, OF. sufrance, soufrance, F. souffrance, L. sufferentia, from sufferens, entis, p. pr. of sufferre. See {Suffer}.] 1. The state of suffering; the bearing of pain; endurance. [1913 Webster] He must not only die the… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • sufferance — [suf′ər əns, suf′rəns] n. [ME < Anglo Fr souffrance < OFr < LL(Ec) sufferentia < L sufferens, prp.: see SUFFER] 1. the power or capacity to endure or tolerate pain, distress, etc. 2. consent, permission, or sanction implied by failure …   English World dictionary

  • sufferance — [[t]sʌ̱frəns[/t]] N UNCOUNT: usu on N If you are allowed to do something on sufferance, you can do it, although you know that the person who gave you permission would prefer that you did not do it. His party held office on sufferance... The… …   English dictionary

  • sufferance — suf|fer|ance [ˈsʌfərəns] n on sufferance formal if you live or work somewhere on sufferance, you are allowed to do it by someone who would prefer you did not do it ▪ He was never going to let her forget she was only here on sufferance …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • sufferance — noun on sufferance formal if you live or work somewhere on sufferance, you are allowed to do it by someone who would rather you did not do it: Martha made it clear I was only staying with them on sufferance …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • sufferance — noun /sʌ.fɚ.əns/ a) Endurance, especially patiently, of pain or adversity. I indulged in this meditation for a moment, and then again addressed the mourner, who stood leaning against the bed with that expression of resigned despair, of complete… …   Wiktionary

  • sufferance — suf|fer|ance [ sʌf(ə)rəns ] noun on sufferance MAINLY BRITISH if you do something on sufferance, someone allows you to do it but does not really want you to do it …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

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