attorney-ship

attorney

[uh-tur-nee]
noun, plural attorneys.
1.
a lawyer; attorney-at-law.
2.
an attorney-in-fact; agent.

Origin:
1250–1300; Middle English < Anglo-French attourne literally, (one who is) turned to, i.e., appointed, past participle of attourner to attorn

attorneyship, noun
subattorney, noun, plural subattorneys.
subattorneyship, noun

attorney, counsel, counselor, lawyer, litigator.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
attorney (əˈtɜːnɪ)
 
n
1.  a person legally appointed or empowered to act for another
2.  (US) a lawyer qualified to represent clients in legal proceedings
3.  (South African) a solicitor
 
[C14: from Old French atourné, from atourner to direct to; see attorn]
 
at'torneyship
 
n

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

attorney
c.1300, from O.Fr. atorné "(one) appointed," pp. of aturner "to decree, assign, appoint," from atorner (see attorn). The legal L. form attornare influenced the spelling in Anglo-Fr. The sense is of "one appointed to represent another's interests." In English law, a
private attorney was one appointed to act for another in business or legal affairs (usually for pay); an attorney at law or public attorney was a qualified legal agent in the courts of Common Law who prepared the cases for a barrister, who pleaded them (the equivalent of a solicitor in Chancery). So much a term of contempt in England that it was abolished by the Judicature Act of 1873 and merged with solicitor.
"Johnson observed that 'he did not care to speak ill of any man behind his back, but he believed the gentleman was an attorney.' " [Boswell]
The double -t- is a mistaken 15c. attempt to restore a non-existent Latin original. Attorney general first recorded 1530s in sense of "legal officer of the state" (late 13c. in Anglo-Fr.), from Fr., hence the odd plural (subject first, adjective second).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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