drostdy, noun

droastdy, droostyShow more Also droastdy, droosty, drosdy, drosdtdy, drosty, and with initial capital.
South African Dutch, DutchShow more South African Dutch, from Dutch drost bailiff + -dij, -ij, suffix forming an abstract noun indicating function or sphere of influence.
‘In none of the scientific dictionaries of our language (sc. Dutch) have we found the form drostdy. Still the etymology is very clear: < drost + allomorph suffix -dji (< ij). The meaning should be “office, rank, dignity of drost”, “residence of a drost”. Analogical formations in modern Dutch are makelaardij “brokerage”, “agency” and proosdij “deanery”.’ (P.G.J. van Sterkenburgh, Stichting Instituut voor Nederlandse Lexicologie).
1. In historical contexts. During the 17th, 18th, and early 19th centuries, a magisterial and administrative district at the Cape over which a landdrost had jurisdiction. Also attributive. See also sub-drostdy.
1796 Statement of Expenditure in G.M. Theal Rec. of Cape Col. (1897) I. 351Sundry officers of the Drostdy of Stellenbosch...Rds 890.
1809 R. Collins in G.M. Theal Rec. of Cape Col. (1900) VII. 20This affords the advantage of a direct and regular communication between the two drosdies, and enables the Postholders to receive three dollars for each hour’s distance.
1811 Cape Town Gaz. & Afr. Advertiser Vol.6 No.276, 1A new Drostdy shall be formed from that part of the Drostdy of Zwellendam which lies to the Eastward of the Ghanka or Gauritz River.
1823 W.W. Bird State of Cape of G.H. 22The Landdrost, who is the chief officer of the district, or Drostdy, holds, together with six heemraden, as accessors, a court for petty cases.
1827 Reports of Commissioners upon Finances at Cape of G.H. I. 40It were to be wished that the districts now called drostdies, but to which in future we propose to give the designation of ‘counties’, should be multiplied, and their dimensions reduced.
1831 S. Afr. Almanac & Dir. 152This District [of Worcester]..was separated from the Stellenbosch district and was erected into a Drosdy in 1803.
1843 J.C. Chase Cape of G.H. 54Instead of the late absurd changes these sections of the colony have undergone from the name of drostdy to district, and from district to division, we shall have it permanently called by the good old English designation of the shire or county of Utenhay, &c.
1877 J. Noble S. Afr. 24He divided the country into five districts or ‘drostdies’ — Stellenbosch, Swellendam, Graaf Reinet, Uitenhage and Tulbagh.
1936 Cambridge Hist. of Brit. Empire VIII. 834The district over which the Landdrost had jurisdiction was known as the Drostdy, but the meaning of this word changed, and in later years it was only used to denote his official residence.
1963 R. Lewcock Early 19th C. Archit. 237In October 1820 Col. John Graham was appointed Landdrost for Albany with the seat of his Drostdy at Bathurst.
1974 Cape Times 28 Sept. (Suppl.) 1The tree is as old as George itself and George was founded in 1811 — the second Drostdy to be established after the British occupation.
2. In historical contexts. The offices and residence of a landdrost. Also attributive.
1797 Earl Macartney in G.M. Theal Rec. of Cape Col. (1898) II. 101The said Landdrost is there not only to examine the Spot where the Drosty with the best propriety and Convenience could be erected if Government at any Time should resolve to do so; but also what Materials for the Building thereof are to be found in its Vicinity.
1810 G. Barrington Acct of Voy. 336The Sunday river, in its passage from the snowy mountains, winds round the small plain on which the Drosdy is placed, and furnishes it with a copious supply of water.
1812 A. Plumptre tr. of H. Lichtenstein’s Trav. in Sn Afr. I. 172The Drosty at Zwellendam was built of like materials.
1821 C.I. Latrobe Jrnl of Visit 177The drosty is a substantial, spacious, well-furnished mansion, and the premises much improved by the present landrost.
1822 W.J. Burchell Trav. I. 128At the distance of half an hour’s walk northwards from the village, is the Drostdy, or official residence of the landdrost.
1832 Graham’s Town Jrnl 1 June 90Entering Graham’s Town from Algoa Bay road, it is lamentable to see the Drostdy House in so miserable a state of decay, and more particularly when we reflect that this building has cost upwards of Fifty Thousand Rix-dollars for its erection.
1861 P.B. Borcherds Auto-Biog. Mem. 28One day..we were invited by the landdrost to call at the drostdy.
1910 D. Fairbridge That Which Hath Been (1913) 237At the head of the street was the Drostdy in which he slept, stately and beautiful in its simple dignity.
1927 C.G. Botha Social Life in Cape Col. 69The principal buildings in a village were the drostdy, the parsonage and the church. The first comprised the residence of the Landdrost or Magistrate, with his court-room, offices and other accommodation to carry out the administrative duties of his district.
1948 H.E. Hockly Story of Brit. Settlers of 1820 73It was Donkin’s intention to move the entire civil administration of the newly constituted district of Albany from Grahamstown to Bathurst on the completion of the drostdy at the latter place.
1969 D. Child Yesterday’s Children 36Next to the church stood the parsonage, and the only other buildings of note were the drosty — residence of the landdrost or magistrate — and his courtroom and offices.
1983 S. Afr. Panorama Jan. 24Swellendam, with its numerous historical buildings, prides itself on one of the few remaining drostdy (magistrates) buildings in the country.
1988 D. Hughes et al. Complete Bk of S. Afr. Wine 266Slight damage to the old Drostdy during a storm in 1822 prompted the Governor to transfer the magistrate to new quarters.
3. obsolete. The capital town of a magisterial district.
a1823 J. Ewart Jrnl (1970) 411This Court..is always held in the principal village of the district from that circumstance called the drosdy or seat of the landrost.
1833 Graham’s Town Jrnl 2 May 2This spot ought unquestionably to have been fixed on for the capital or drostdy of the extensive district of Somerset.
1834 T. Pringle Afr. Sketches 133She had come from the drostdy, or district town, of Uitenhage.
1834 T. Pringle Afr. Sketches 296The source of the Ghamka, where the drostdy, or district village of Beaufort had been recently erected.
1842 R. Godlonton Sketches of E. Districts 51This duty discharged, a visit to the ‘Drostdy’, or market town, affords them an opportunity for laying in a supply of household necessaries.
During the 17th, 18th, and early 19th centuries, a magisterial and administrative district at the Cape over which a landdrost had jurisdiction. Also attributive.
The offices and residence of a landdrost. Also attributive.
The capital town of a magisterial district.
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