serjeant at law
Sergeant Ser"geant, n. [F. sergent, fr. L. serviens, -entis, p. pr. of servire to serve. See {Serve}, and cf. {Servant}.] [Written also {serjeant}. Both spellings are authorized. In England {serjeant} is usually preferred, except for military officers. In the United States {sergeant} is common for civil officers also.] 1. Formerly, in England, an officer nearly answering to the more modern bailiff of the hundred; also, an officer whose duty was to attend on the king, and on the lord high steward in court, to arrest traitors and other offenders. He is now called sergeant-at-arms, and two of these officers, by allowance of the sovereign, attend on the houses of Parliament (one for each house) to execute their commands, and another attends the Court Chancery. [1913 Webster]

The sergeant of the town of Rome them sought. --Chaucer. [1913 Webster]

The magistrates sent the serjeant, saying, Let those men go. --Acts xvi. 35. [1913 Webster]

This fell sergeant, Death, Is strict in his arrest. --Shak. [1913 Webster]

2. (Mil.) In a company, battery, or troop, a noncommissioned officer next in rank above a corporal, whose duty is to instruct recruits in discipline, to form the ranks, etc. [1913 Webster]

Note: In the United States service, besides the sergeants belonging to the companies there are, in each regiment, a sergeant major, who is the chief noncommissioned officer, and has important duties as the assistant to the adjutant; a quartermaster sergeant, who assists the quartermaster; a color sergeant, who carries the colors; and a commissary sergeant, who assists in the care and distribution of the stores. Ordnance sergeants have charge of the ammunition at military posts. [1913 Webster]

3. (Law) A lawyer of the highest rank, answering to the doctor of the civil law; -- called also {serjeant at law}. [Eng.] --Blackstone. [1913 Webster]

4. A title sometimes given to the servants of the sovereign; as, sergeant surgeon, that is, a servant, or attendant, surgeon. [Eng.] [1913 Webster]

5. (Zo["o]l.) The cobia. [1913 Webster]

{Drill sergeant}. (Mil.) See under {Drill}.

{Sergeant-at-arms}, an officer of a legislative body, or of a deliberative or judicial assembly, who executes commands in preserving order and arresting offenders. See {Sergeant}, 1.

{Sergeant major}. (a) (Mil.) See the Note under def. 2, above. (b) (Zo["o]l.) The cow pilot. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • serjeant at law — In English legal history, an elite order of attorneys who had the exclusive privilege of arguing before the Court of Common Pleas and also supplied the judges for both Common Pleas and the Court of the King s Bench. Dictionary from West s… …   Law dictionary

  • Serjeant-at-law — (postnominal SL [cite web | url=http://www.burkes peerage.net/code/hith/help/ahp s.asp | title=Abbreviations (S), Burke s Peerage | accessdate=2006 12 07] ) was an order of barristers at the English or Irish bar. Serjeants at law ( servientes ad… …   Wikipedia

  • Serjeant at law — (engl.), soviel wie Sergeant at law (s. d.) …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • serjeant-at-law — [sär′jəntat lô′] n. pl. serjeants at law any of a former group of high ranking British barristers * * * …   Universalium

  • serjeant-at-law — [sär′jəntat lô′] n. pl. serjeants at law any of a former group of high ranking British barristers …   English World dictionary

  • serjeant at law — (Brit.) special type of British lawyer …   English contemporary dictionary

  • Serjeant-at-law — At one time the highest rank of English barrister at the bar; it was abolished in the late 19c. Working in the court of common pleas, the serjeants at law had a monopoly on pleading cases. They were appointed by the king after 16 years of study… …   Dictionary of Medieval Terms and Phrases

  • serjeant-at-law — noun an English barrister of the highest rank • Syn: ↑serjeant, ↑sergeant at law, ↑sergeant • Hypernyms: ↑barrister …   Useful english dictionary

  • serjeant-at-law — noun (plural serjeants at law) Usage: British Date: 1503 a member of a former class of barristers of the highest rank …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • serjeant-at-law — noun (plural serjeants at law) historical a barrister of the highest rank …   English new terms dictionary

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