landdrost, noun

Forms:
landdrest, landdroostShow more Formerly also landdrest, landdroost, landrest, landros, landrost, landruest, llandrost, and with initial capital.
Plurals:
landdrosts, occasionally landdrosten.
Origin:
South African Dutch, Dutch, AfrikaansShow more South African Dutch, from Dutch land country + drost bailiff. (In Afrikaans, landdros magistrate).
historical
Note:
The first landdrost was appointed in 1685; in 1827, landdrosts were replaced by civil commissioners and magistrates, but the title was revived in the Boer republics (see sense 2).
1. Under Dutch East India Company rule: the magistrate and chief administrator of a district or ‘drostdy’ (see drostdy sense 1), and chairman of the board of heemraden; drost. Also attributive. See also heemraad.
1731 G. Medley tr. of P. Kolben’s Present State of Cape of G.H. II. 10He gave this Land-Drost the Powers of a Fiscal Independent (an Officer in the Capian Colony) to seize and prosecute all Criminals, Vagabonds and disorderly Persons in the Colonies for which he was appointed.
1776 F. Masson in Phil. Trans. of Royal Soc. LXVI. 286Dined with the Land Drost, who is a justice of peace, and collects different taxes from the peasants.
1786 G. Forster tr. of A. Sparrman’s Voy. to Cape of G.H. II. 144The land-drost has appointed one of the farmers, with the title of veld-corporal, to command in these wars.
1790 W. Paterson Narr. of Four Journeys 20Zwellendam..is the residence of a Land Drost, or chief justice.
1795 C.R. Hopson tr. of C.P. Thunberg’s Trav. I. 167Arrived at Zwellendam, the residence of one of the company’s land-drosts, whose jurisdiction extends over all the interior part of the country that lies beyond this spot, and whose office is in some respect, though not absolutely, similar to that of the governor of a province.
1822 W.J. Burchell Trav. I. 75Each [district] is placed under the superintendance of either a Landdrost or a deputy landdrost, who administers the government, in most respects, as the representative of the governor; and it is through him that all laws, proclamations, and inferior regulations, are carried into effect.
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 assessors, a court for petty cases, both criminal and civil; and also a matrimonial court.
1830 in Stat. Law of Cape of G.H. (1862) 31 Oct.The office of landdrost was abolished on the 31st day of December, 1827.
1832 Graham’s Town Jrnl 22 June 102I hope the Civil Commissioners of both the districts will order immediate repairs. In the old times of Landdrosts such complaints would not be long unattended to.
1837 J.E. Alexander Narr. of Voy. I. 355Before civil commissioners were appointed for the Cape districts, the landrost was the chief officer in each; and his residence was styled ‘the drostdy’.
1943 J. Burger Black Man’s Burden 18In 1834..the old Dutch local courts of Landdrost and Heemraden were abolished and paid magistrates appointed, and a few years later popularly elected municipal councils were instituted.
1955 L. Marquard Story of S. Afr. 64Local government for this whole area centred in the village of Stellenbosch. The chief government official was the landdrost who was assisted by a district secretary and an unpaid board of heemraden to administer the district, try petty cases, collect taxes, register wills and notarial deeds, pay out ‘lion and tiger money’ as a reward for the destruction of wild animals, and organize and control the burgher militia.
1985 S. Afr. Panorama Oct. 15Building started in 1804 when the first landdros (magistrate), Hendrik van de Graaff was appointed to the Land of Waveren and the newly proclaimed town of Tulbagh.
2. In the former Boer republics: a magistrate. Also attributive.
1846 Natal Witness 8 MayA further sum..which he also owes..by virtue of a certain Deed..signed by him..before Johan Philip Zietsman, then Landdrost of this District of Pietermaritzburg.
1856 Cape of G.H. Almanac & Annual Register 291British authority again having been withdrawn from the whole of this country (sc. the Orange River Sovereignty) on the 23rd February 1854..its government is now in the hands of a President, freely elected by the inhabitants, assisted by an Executive Council and Landdrosts and Heemraden in the several districts while the Volksraad exercises legislative functions.
1877 F. Jeppe Tvl Bk Almanac & Dir. (1976) 35The chief officer in each district is the ‘Landdrost’ who acts as Magistrate and Civil Commissioner with the assistance of a Landdrost Clerk, who is at the same time Public Prosecutor, Postmaster and Distributor of Stamps. Each district is further provided with a baljuw or sheriff, gaoler, and staff of constable.
1877 F. Jeppe Tvl Bk Almanac & Dir. (1976) 37Landdrost Court — This Court has police, criminal, and civil jurisdiction, regulated by law, the latter in all cases up to £3710s. From this court of Landdrost or Resident Magistrate, there is an appeal to the Landdrost and Heemraden Court.
1880 G.F. Austen Diary (1981) 7Through the whole of this day, hostilities were actively carried on between the Llandrost’s office and the Boers.
1895 Star 30 Dec. 2Government this morning received telegrams from the Landdrost of Potchefstroom..that a large force of mounted men had crossed the Bechuanaland border into the Transvaal and were evidently en route for Johannesburg.
1900 H.C. Hillegas Oom Paul’s People 204In Johannesburg and Pretoria the land-drosts are men of eminent station in the legal profession of South Africa, and are drawn from all parts of the country, regardless of their political or racial qualifications.
1923 B. Ronan Forty S. Afr. Yrs 173One of the most conspicuous figures of the early days of the Rand was its first Landdrost, Major von Brandis.
1934 N. Devitt Mem. of Magistrate 30In the Transvaal and Free State the Landdrost and Predikant were the two men always most looked up to.
1947 L. Hastings Dragons Are Extra 35Any old leader or landrost of the Free State or Transvaal had just Botha’s sort of serenity.
1965 C. Van Heyningen Orange Days 24Anton was afterwards magistrate (landdrost) of Hoopstad.
1973 The 1820 Vol.46 No.11, 7The landdrost was a well-known figure in Johannesburg, in his flat-topped hat, morning coat, light trousers and with his characteristic limp.
the magistrate and chief administrator of a district or ‘drostdy’ (see drostdy1), and chairman of the board of heemraden; drost. Also attributive.
a magistrate. Also attributive.
Derivatives:
Hence landdrostdy noun, drostdy sense 1; landdrostship noun nonce, the office of landdrost.
1821 T. Philipps Philipps, 1820 Settler (1960) 104Capt. Trappes having Bird’s interest expected to have succeeded to the Landdrostship, and in this state matters were when the Govnr determined to come up here.
1972 Evening Post 19 Feb. (Weekend Mag.) 2The veldkornetcy of Achter Bruintjes Hoochte..was by then the eastern section of the Graaff-Reinet landdrostdy.

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17311985