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Webster's Dictionary 1828 - Online Edition

Webster's Dictionary 1828

Americal Dictionary of the English Language

American Dictionary
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Distrain

DISTRAIN, verb transitive [Latin Dis and stringo. See Strain. Blackstone writes distrein.]

1. To seize for debt; to take a personal chatel from the possession of a wrong-doer into the possession of the injured party, to satisfy a demand, or compel the performance of a duty; as, to distrain goods fro rent, or for an amercement.

2. To rend; to tear.

DISTRAIN, verb intransitive To make seizure of goods.

On whom I cannot distrain for debt.

For neglecting to do suit to the lords court, or other personal service, the lord may distrain of common right.

[In this phrase however some word seems to be understood; as, to distrain goods.]