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Related to ealdorman: Thegn, Þegn


The chief magistrate of a district in Anglo-Saxon England.

[Old English; see alderman.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


n, pl -men
(Historical Terms) an official of Anglo-Saxon England, appointed by the king, who was responsible for law, order, and justice in his shire and for leading his local fyrd in battle
[Old English ealdor lord + man]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈɔl dər mən)

n., pl. -men.
the chief magistrate of a shire in Anglo-Saxon England.
[before 900; < Old English; see alderman]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The entry for 750 in the Chronicle D reads "Her Cudred Waestseaxna cyning gefeaht wid aedelhun pone ofermodigan ealdormann" (Microfiche 321)--"Here Cuthred, king of the West Saxons, fought with Aethelhun, that ofermodigan ealdorman." Just as Lucifer did, Aethelhun rebels against his rightful lord, and the Chronicler ascribes this rebellion to his ofermod.
Nor does Barrow mention, for instance, the late ninth-century inscription in the Codex Aureus of Christ Church, which records its purchase from Viking raiders by an ealdorman of Surrey.
As Jeff Watkin points out, this may reflect the latter's higher status; while she was from the royal house of Wessex, her husband was a mere ealdorman.
OE ic eom Apollonius se tirisca ealdorman), the Prince of Tyr (1393).
. Sarah House 090 accommodation pounds 426 Here stands Ealdorman Brithnoth, the 68-year-old warrior who fought the Viking invasion, and lost, in 991AD.
The small number of surviving manuscripts might seem to argue against any widespread circulation of texts, but Pratt provides counter arguments for the effectiveness of Alfred's campaign to improve the literacy of his ealdorman and thegns as well as his bishops.
She shows how the monastic writers of Ramsey contrasted the recent evil perpetrated by a nobleman with an idealized depiction of their noble co-founder Ealdorman AEthelwine, whom they linked with biblical heroes.
In 991 Ealdorman Brihtnoth was killed at the famous battle of Maldon in Essex by a Viking host under Olaf Tryggvason, a Norwegian who returned to plunder the north-east in 993.
[In this same year, Alfred, king of the Anglo-Saxons, restored the city of London splendidly--after so many towns had been burned and so many people slaughtered--and made it habitable again; he entrusted it to the care of AEthelred, ealdorman of the Mercians.
The ruling class was the ealdorman and thanes, there were freeholders, holding their own land and other freemen such as tradesmen, craftsmen, merchants and clergy.