precinct-house

precinct

[pree-singkt]
noun
1.
a district, as of a city, marked out for governmental or administrative purposes, or for police protection.
2.
Also called precinct house. the police station in such a district.
3.
Also called election district. one of a fixed number of districts, each containing one polling place, into which a city, town, etc., is divided for voting purposes.
4.
a space or place of definite or understood limits.
5.
Often, precincts. an enclosing boundary or limit.
6.
precincts, the parts or regions immediately surrounding a place; environs: the precincts of a town.
7.
Chiefly British. the ground immediately surrounding a church, temple, or the like.
8.
a walled or otherwise bounded or limited space within which a building or place is situated.

Origin:
1350–1400; Middle English < Medieval Latin praecinctum, noun use of neuter of Latin praecinctus, past participle of praecingere to gird about, surround, equivalent to prae- pre- + cing- (stem of cingere to surround; cf. cinch1) + -tus past participle suffix


1. ward. 4. territory. 8. compound.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
precinct (ˈpriːsɪŋkt)
 
n
1.  a.  an enclosed area or building marked by a fixed boundary such as a wall
 b.  such a boundary
2.  an area in a town, often closed to traffic, that is designed or reserved for a particular purpose: a shopping precinct; pedestrian precinct
3.  (US)
 a.  a district of a city for administrative or police purposes
 b.  the police responsible for such a district
4.  (US) a polling or electoral district
 
[C15: from Medieval Latin praecinctum (something) surrounded, from Latin praecingere to gird around, from prae before, around + cingere to gird]

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

precinct
early 15c., "district defined for purposes of government or representation," from M.L. precinctum "enclosure, boundary line," prop. neut. pp. of L. præcingere "to gird about, surround," from præ- "before" + cingere "to surround, encircle" (see cinch).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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