knight of the shire

noun
plural knights of the shire

Definition of knight of the shire 

1 : a knight selected by the freeholders to represent a shire in the House of Commons especially in medieval times the knight of the shire was the connecting link between the baron and the shopkeeper— T. B. Macaulay

2 : a parliamentary representative from a shire or county as distinguished from a representative of a city or a borough the number of knights of the shire was increased to 159— T. E. May

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History and Etymology for knight of the shire

Middle English

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