Distrain Dis*train", v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Distrained}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Distraining}.] [OE. destreinen to force, OF. destreindre to press, oppress, force, fr. L. distringere, districtum, to draw asunder, hinder, molest, LL., to punish severely; di- = stringere to draw tight, press together. See {Strain}, and cf. {Distress}, {District}, {Distraint}.] 1. To press heavily upon; to bear down upon with violence; hence, to constrain or compel; to bind; to distress, torment, or afflict. [Obs.] ``Distrained with chains.'' --Chaucer. [1913 Webster]

2. To rend; to tear. [Obs.] [1913 Webster]

Neither guile nor force might it [a net] distrain. --Spenser. [1913 Webster]

3. (Law) (a) To seize, as a pledge or indemnification; to take possession of as security for nonpayment of rent, the reparation of an injury done, etc.; to take by distress; as, to distrain goods for rent, or of an amercement. (b) To subject to distress; to coerce; as, to distrain a person by his goods and chattels. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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(for debt), , ,

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  • distrain — dis·train /di strān/ vb [Anglo French destreindre, literally, to constrict, force, from Old French, from Late Latin distringere to hinder, punish, from Latin, to pull in different directions, distract, from dis apart + stringere to draw tight] vt …   Law dictionary

  • distrain — dis‧train [dɪˈstreɪn] verb [transitive] LAW to take goods from someone to be sold in order to pay rent that is owed: • Legislation has largely restricted the right to distrain goods found upon the premises but not belonging to the tenant.… …   Financial and business terms

  • Distrain — Dis*train , v. i. To levy a distress. [1913 Webster] Upon whom I can distrain for debt. Camden. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • distrain — [di strān′] vt., vi. [ME distreinen < OFr destreindre < ML distringere, to force by seizure of goods < L, to pull asunder, detain < dis , apart + stringere, to draw tight, stretch: see STRICT] Law to seize and hold (property) as… …   English World dictionary

  • distrain — verb Etymology: Middle English distreynen, from Anglo French destreindre, from Medieval Latin distringere, from Latin, to draw apart, detain, from dis + stringere to bind tight more at strain Date: 14th century transitive verb 1. to force or… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • distrain — distrainable, adj. distrainee, n. distrainment, n. distrainor, distrainer, n. /di strayn /, Law. v.t. 1. to constrain by seizing and holding goods, etc., in pledge for rent, damages, etc., or in order to …   Universalium

  • distrain — verb /dɪˈstɹeɪn/ To seize somebodys property in place of, or to force, payment of a debt. But when he heard her answeres loth, he knew / Some secret sorrow did her heart distraine [...]. Syn: distress …   Wiktionary

  • Distrain — To force a person to do something or act out an obligation under threat of being dispossessed. Cf. Distraint of knighthood; Disseisin, Distress; Distringas …   Dictionary of Medieval Terms and Phrases

  • distrain — v. a. 742, 752 B …   Oldest English Words

  • distrain — dis·train || dɪ streɪn v. foreclose on property, take property in payment for debts …   English contemporary dictionary

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