Definitions for: Jail


[n] a correctional institution used to detain persons who are in the lawful custody of the government (either accused persons awaiting trial or convicted persons serving a sentence)
[v] lock up or confine, in or as in a jail; "The suspects were imprisoned without trial"; "the murderer was incarcerated for the rest of his life"



Webster (1913) Definition: Jail, n. [OE. jaile, gail, gayhol, OF. gaole, gaiole,
jaiole, F. ge[^o]le, LL. gabiola, dim. of gabia cage, for L.
cavea cavity, cage. See Cage.]
A kind of prison; a building for the confinement of persons
held in lawful custody, especially for minor offenses or with
reference to some future judicial proceeding. [Written also
gaol.]

This jail I count the house of liberty. --Milton.

Jail bird, a prisoner; one who has been confined in prison.
[Slang]

Jail delivery, the release of prisoners from jail, either
legally or by violence.

Jail delivery commission. See under Gaol.

Jail fever (Med.), typhus fever, or a disease resembling
it, generated in jails and other places crowded with
people; -- called also hospital fever, and ship fever.


Jail liberties, or Jail limits, a space or district
around a jail within which an imprisoned debtor was, on
certain conditions, allowed to go at large. --Abbott.

Jail lock, a peculiar form of padlock; -- called also
Scandinavian lock.


Jail, v. t.
To imprison. [R.] --T. Adams (1614).

[Bolts] that jail you from free life. --Tennyson.

Synonyms: clink, gaol, gaol, immure, imprison, incarcerate, jailhouse, jug, lag, put away, put behind bars, remand, slammer

See Also: bastille, confine, correctional institution, detain, holding cell, hoosegow, hoosgow, house of correction, lockup, pokey, workhouse

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