con·​sta·​ble | \ ˈkän(t)-stə-bəl How to pronounce constable (audio) , ˈkən(t)- How to pronounce constable (audio) \

Definition of constable

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a high officer of a royal court or noble household especially in the Middle Ages
2 : the warden or governor of a royal castle or a fortified town
3a : a public officer usually of a town or township responsible for keeping the peace and for minor judicial duties
b chiefly British : police officer especially : one ranking below sergeant


biographical name
Con·​sta·​ble | \ ˈkən(t)-stə-bəl How to pronounce Constable (audio) , ˈkän(t)-\

Definition of Constable (Entry 2 of 2)

John 1776–1837 English painter

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Synonyms for constable

Synonyms: Noun

bobby [British], bull [slang], cop, copper, flatfoot [slang], fuzz, gendarme, lawman, officer, police officer, policeman, shamus [slang]

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Examples of constable in a Sentence


reported the crime to the local constable

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Harris County constables say Clayton Sambury, 78, was visiting the Dallas area from Houston. Dallas News, "Silver Alert: Houston man with cognitive impairment last seen driving in Richardson," 26 June 2019 Two Humane Society emergency animal technicians were called to the house near 46th Street and McDowell Road the previous day to check on the conditions of the dogs, according to the Human Society and Maricopa County constable's office. Rocky Baier, azcentral, "38 Chihuahuas taken in by Arizona Humane Society from foreclosed Phoenix home," 14 June 2019 Walcott was aware of this development and on Sept. 23, before the constable could find his bearings, started the plane towards the runway. Abeer Kapoor, Quartz India, "The fascinating story of an American smuggler’s daring escapades in 1960s India," 19 June 2019 Pat Ruby, a retired professional duckpin bowler and constable, died Saturday of heart failure at the University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center in Towson. Frederick N. Rasmussen,, "Pat Ruby, retired professional duckpin bowler and constable, dies," 18 June 2019 He was arrested and faces charges of felon in possession of a weapon and evading law enforcement, according to the constable’s office. Samantha Ketterer, Houston Chronicle, "Officers arrest two men after separate foot chases in Houston," 3 July 2018 Bob Valdez, the aging town constable, prosecutes his relentless, suicidal crusade against a powerful horse smuggler and his gang to get restitution money for an Indian woman whose husband was mistakenly killed. Sam Sacks, WSJ, "Fiction: A Proving Ground for Men and Storytellers," 16 Aug. 2018 Pappas worked from 1983 through 1995 as a peace officer with two Houston-area constable offices. Amy Lieu, Fox News, "Suspect in killing of HW Bush's doctor may have 'hit list,' report says," 3 Aug. 2018 Testing to become constables, low-level Indian police officers, began Tuesday. Washington Post, "Indian authorities break up police test-cheating gang," 19 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'constable.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of constable


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for constable


Middle English conestable, from Anglo-French, from Late Latin comes stabuli, literally, officer of the stable

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Statistics for constable

Last Updated

12 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for constable

The first known use of constable was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for constable



English Language Learners Definition of constable

US : a public official whose job is similar to that of a police officer but who is elected or appointed rather than hired


con·​sta·​ble | \ ˈkän-stə-bəl How to pronounce constable (audio) , ˈkən-\

Kids Definition of constable

: a police officer usually of a village or small town


con·​sta·​ble | \ ˈkän-stə-bəl, ˈkən- How to pronounce constable (audio) \

Legal Definition of constable

: a public officer usually of a town or township responsible for keeping the peace and for minor judicial duties

History and Etymology for constable

Old French conestable military commander, chief of the royal household, from Late Latin comes stabuli, literally, officer of the stable

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Comments on constable

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