American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A wooden framework on a post, with holes for the head and hands, in which offenders were formerly locked to be exposed to public scorn as punishment.
- v. To expose to ridicule and abuse.
- v. To put in a pillory as punishment.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A frame of wood erected on a post or pole, with movable boards resembling those in the stocks, and holes through which were put the head and hands of an offender, who was thus exposed to public derision. In Great Britain it was a common punishment appointed for forestallers, users of deceitful weights, common scolds, political offenders, those guilty of perjury, forgery, libel, seditious writings, etc. It was abolished in 1837.
- To punish by exposure in the pillory.
- Hence Figuratively, to expose to ridicule, contempt, abuse, and the like.
- n. A framework on a post, with holes for the hands and head, used as a means of punishment and humiliation.
- v. transitive To put in a pillory.
- v. transitive To subject to humiliation, scorn, ridicule or abuse.
- v. transitive To criticize harshly.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. A frame of adjustable boards erected on a post, and having holes through which the head and hands of an offender were thrust so as to be exposed in front of it.
- v. To set in, or punish with, the pillory.
- v. Figuratively, to expose to public scorn.
- n. a wooden instrument of punishment on a post with holes for the wrists and neck; offenders were locked in and so exposed to public scorn
- v. punish by putting in a pillory
- v. expose to ridicule or public scorn
- v. criticize harshly or violently
- Middle English, from Old French pilori, probably from Latin pīla, pillar. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“I do not like to stand on your what you call pillory --- it is very bad way to take de air, I think; and I do not like your prisons no more, where one cannot take de air at all. '”
“Den, gentlemens, I shall take my leave of you, dat is all; I do not like to stand on your what you call pillory -- it is very bad way to take de air, I think; and I do not like your prisons no more, where one cannot take de air at all.”
““Den, gentlemens, I shall take my leave of you, dat is all; I do not like to stand on your what you call pillory — it is very bad way to take de air, I think; and I do not like your prisons no more, where one cannot take de air at all.””
“There is a piece of business to be transacted between writer and reader before any further dealings are possible, and to be reminded in the middle of this private interview that Defoe sold stockings, had brown hair, and was stood in the pillory is a distraction and a worry.”
“Exposure in the pillory was a favourite prescription, a kind of judicial panacea, to which all sorts of the morally infirm were introduced in turn.”
“For a man in the pillory was a fitting object for laughter and rude jests.”
“Be that as it might, the scaffold of the pillory was a point of view that revealed to Hester Prynne the entire track along which she had been treading, since her happy infancy.”
“The furious controversies of that age, in which the stake, the prison, and the pillory were the popular theological arguments, produced a characteristic effect on his sympathies.”
“In days when the pillory was the punishment for common libel, it cannot be thought much that heresy and infidelity should be punished by public opprobrium.”
Essays and Reviews: The Education of the World, Bunsen's Biblical Researches, On the Study of the Evidences of Christianity; Seances Historiques de Gen��ve; On the Mosaic Cosmogony; Tendencies of Religious Thought in England, 1688-1750; On the Interpretation of Scripture.
“(Perhaps the "pillory" was already booked-up solid.) dylan”
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