Online Encyclopedia

THRALL

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V26, Page 886 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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THRALL, a slave, a captive or bondman, a term especially applied to the serfs (Lat. servi) of the early northern Teutonic peoples. It only occurs in Old English as a word borrowed from the Norse, the proper term in Old English being " theow " (peow); the Icel. Israeli (Dan. trael, Swed. trill) is probably represented by O. H. Ger. dregil, trigil, trikil, a slave, and would therefore be derived from the root meaning " to run," seen in 0. Eng. praegian, Goth. thagjan, cf. Gr. r(AVM ; Skeat (Etym. Diet., 1898) compares the " trochilus " (Gr. apoxi)os), the small bird that according to Herodotus waits or attends on the crocodile and picks insects out of his teeth.
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