Definition of bum-bailiff in English:


Line breaks: bum-bailiff


historical , derogatory
A bailiff empowered to collect debts or arrest debtors for non-payment: a confounded pettifogging bum-bailiff
More example sentences
  • They are also often called bum-bailiffs or, shortly, ‘bums’.
  • They will do what the law commands, but they will not volunteer to act as tip-staves of bum-bailiffs.
  • Up to the time that a post office was established on January 1, 1806, it was known as Bumbridge because the bum-bailiff fell through the bridge while attempting to arrest a person.


early 17th century: from bum2, so named because of the association of an approach from behind.

Definition of bum-bailiff in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day demoralize
Pronunciation: dɪˈmɒrəlʌɪz
cause (someone) to lose confidence or hope