Middle English Dictionary Entry

hǒus-hōld n.
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Entry Info

Definitions (Senses and Subsenses)

1a.
(a) The members of a family collectively, including servants, a family; the familia of a bishop, abbot, etc.; also, a hive full of bees; also fig.; (b) the persons living with a king, queen, or noble; attendants, retainers, retinue; court;(c) ?a court of justice; (d) as surname.
1b.
In phrases: purtenaunce of ~, household goods; of the ~, of a remedy:?household, domestic [cp. homli adj. 1. (a)]; abiden in ~ with, to remain or live with (sb.); holden in ~, keep (sb.) as a member of one's family; kepen (holden) ~, have a residence, dwell, keep house, hold court; kepen in ~, keep (persons together) as a family; maken ~, make a home, set up housekeeping; putten out of ~, dismiss (a servant), disown (a child).
2.
(a) A dwelling place, residence; (b) separate quarters occupied by small groups of nuns in a convent; (c) a landholding able to support one household [cp. hide n. (2)].
3.
(a) Furniture and articles belonging to a household, household goods; household food; (b) domestic affairs, housekeeping; (c) eating and drinking in a household; ?hospitality.
4.
In cpds. & combs.: ~ bred, ?bread for servants; ~ fader, the head of a household; ~ gere (stuffe), equipment of any kind belonging to a household; ~ man, one who belongs to a household, a servant or attendant; ~ meine, members of a household, servants; ~ nede, ~ servaunt.