Dictionary

distrain

verb dis·train \di-ˈstrān\

Definition of DISTRAIN

transitive verb
1
:  to force or compel to satisfy an obligation by means of a distress
2
:  to seize by distress
intransitive verb
:  to levy a distress
dis·train·able \-ˈstrā-nə-bəl\ adjective
dis·train·er \-ˈstrā-nər\ also dis·train·or \-ˈstrā-nər, -ˌstrā-ˈnr\ noun

Origin of DISTRAIN

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
First Known Use: 14th century

Other Legal Terms

actionable, alienable, carceral, chattel, complicity, decedent, larceny, malfeasance, modus operandi

Browse

Next Word in the Dictionary: distraineePrevious Word in the Dictionary: distractionAll Words Near: distrain
April 01, 2015
diapause Hear it
a period of physiological dormancy
Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears