BLACKMAIL , a
See also:term, in
See also:law, used in three
See also:special meanings, at different times . The usual derivation of the second
See also:half of the word is from Norman Fr. maille (medalia; cf . " medal "), small copper
See also:coin; the New English
See also:Dictionary derives from "
See also:mail " (q.v.), meaning
See also:rent or tribute . (I) The
See also:primary meaning of " blackmail " was rent paid in labour,
See also:grain or baser
See also:metal (i.e.
See also:money other than sterling money), called reditus nigri, in contradistinction to rent paid in
See also:silver or
See also:white money (mailles blanches) . (2) In the
See also:northern counties of England (
See also:Northumberland, Westmorland and the bishopric of Durham) it signified a tribute in money, corn,
See also:cattle or other
See also:consideration exacted from farmers and small owners by freebooters in return for immunity from robbers or
See also:moss-troopers . By a
See also:statute of 16oi it was made a
See also:felony without benefit of
See also:clergy to receive or pay such tribute, but the practice lingered until the union of England and Scotland in 1707 . (3) The word now signifies extortion of money or
See also:property by threats' of
See also:libel, presecution, exposure, &c . See such headings as COERCION,
See also:CONSPIRACY, EXTORTION, and authorities quoted under CRIMINAL LAW .
RICHARD DODDRIDGE BLACKMORE (1825-1900)
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