Definition of bailiwick in English:



  • 1one's bailiwickOne's sphere of operations or area of interest.

    ‘after the war, the Middle East remained his bailiwick’
    • ‘Education is going to be your bailiwick for us, and then we're going to ask about that and a lot of other things.’
    • ‘Thus, it doesn't really monkey with the states' authority after all; it only makes sure they stay in their traditional bailiwick.’
    • ‘And she's looking at a couple of other projects, but that's kind of out of my bailiwick, if you will.’
    • ‘Here her analysis is most surefooted as she discusses late eighteenth and early nineteenth-century fiction, Benedict's professional bailiwick.’
    • ‘And it has done so even in areas where the crime at issue seems to be a crime that falls squarely into the state's bailiwick - and does not affect federal interests at all.’
    area, sphere, area of activity, discipline, province, department, domain, sector, line, branch, subject, speciality, specialty, specialization, specialism
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  • 2Law
    The district or jurisdiction of a bailie or bailiff.

    ‘the warden had the right to arrest all poachers found within his bailiwick’
    • ‘They are still causing mayhem in their southern bailiwick.’
    • ‘Will decentralization really bring politics closer to the people, or will we be returning to a bunch of little bailiwicks?’
    • ‘With very few exceptions, they easily agreed that what was going on in their bailiwicks was incomparable and required a different approach.’
    • ‘Their organization was strictly hierarchical, into priorates, then bailiwicks and lastly commanderies.’
    • ‘The queen appoints a lieutenant-governor as her representative in the two bailiwicks of Jersey and Guernsey.’


Late Middle English: from bailie + wick.