Pocket borough
Borough Bor"ough, n. [OE. burgh, burw, boru, port, town, burrow, AS. burh, burg; akin to Icel., Sw., & Dan. borg, OS. & D. burg, OHG. puruc, purc, MHG. burc, G. burg, Goth. ba['u]rgs; and from the root of AS. beorgan to hide, save, defend, G. bergen; or perh. from that of AS. beorg hill, mountain. [root]95. See {Bury}, v. t., and cf. {Burrow}, {Burg}, {Bury}, n., {Burgess}, {Iceberg}, {Borrow}, {Harbor}, {Hauberk}.] 1. In England, an incorporated town that is not a city; also, a town that sends members to parliament; in Scotland, a body corporate, consisting of the inhabitants of a certain district, erected by the sovereign, with a certain jurisdiction; in America, an incorporated town or village, as in Pennsylvania and Connecticut. --Burrill. Erskine. [1913 Webster]

2. The collective body of citizens or inhabitants of a borough; as, the borough voted to lay a tax. [1913 Webster]

{Close borough}, or {Pocket borough}, a borough having the right of sending a member to Parliament, whose nomination is in the hands of a single person.

{Rotten borough}, a name given to any borough which, at the time of the passage of the Reform Bill of 1832, contained but few voters, yet retained the privilege of sending a member to Parliament. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Pocket borough — Pocket Pock et (p[o^]k [e^]t), n. [OE. poket, Prov. F. & OF. poquette, F. pochette, dim. fr. poque, pouque, F. poche; probably of Teutonic origin. See {Poke} a pocket, and cf. {Poach} to cook eggs, to plunder, and {Pouch}.] 1. A bag or pouch;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • pocket borough — n. in Great Britain before 1832, a borough whose representation in Parliament was controlled by one family or person …   English World dictionary

  • pocket borough — 1. (before the Reform Bill of 1832) any English borough whose representatives in Parliament were controlled by an individual or family. 2. an election district under the control of an individual, family, or group. [1855 60] * * * ▪ British… …   Universalium

  • pocket borough — noun a sparsely populated borough in which all or most of the land is owned by a single family • Hypernyms: ↑borough …   Useful english dictionary

  • POCKET BOROUGH —    a borough in which the influence of some magnate of the place determines the voting at an election time, a thing pretty much of the past …   The Nuttall Encyclopaedia

  • pocket borough —  A British parliamentary borough controlled by one person or group; common before parliamentary reforms of 1832 …   Bryson’s dictionary for writers and editors

  • pocket borough — noun historical (in the UK) a borough in which the election of political representatives was controlled by one person or family …   English new terms dictionary

  • pocket borough — pock′et bor ough n. why (before 1832) an English borough whose representation in Parliament was controlled by an individual or family …   From formal English to slang

  • pocket borough — noun Date: 1856 an English constituency controlled before parliamentary reform by a single person or family …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Pocket — Pock et (p[o^]k [e^]t), n. [OE. poket, Prov. F. & OF. poquette, F. pochette, dim. fr. poque, pouque, F. poche; probably of Teutonic origin. See {Poke} a pocket, and cf. {Poach} to cook eggs, to plunder, and {Pouch}.] 1. A bag or pouch;… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”