Definition of bridewell in English:


Line breaks: bride|well
Pronunciation: /ˈbrʌɪdw(ə)l


A prison or reform school for petty offenders.
More example sentences
  • They were hauled off to the barracks, spent the night in the bridewell, and the next day were convicted.
  • In the 17th century, bridewells and reformatory institutions started to appear.
  • With the advent of bridewells, convicts begin to inhabit separate punitive institutions for the first time.


mid 16th century: named after St Bride's Well in the City of London, near which such a building stood.

Definition of bridewell in:

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