Definition of soke in US English:



  • 1A right of local jurisdiction.

    • ‘In 1888 the soke of Peterborough, which retained special jurisdictions, was given its own county council, and in 1965 was merged with Huntingdonshire, before finding its way in 1972 into a substantially enlarged Cambridgeshire.’
    • ‘Maud, William the Conqueror's queen, held the town and soke as part of the king's demesne.’
    1. 1.1 A district under a particular jurisdiction; a minor administrative district.
      • ‘For this reason the five hide units were combined in some regions into districts of 300 hides, which were called ship sokes.’
      • ‘Clear parallels can be drawn between the soke and the Northumbrian shire, yet they were not made because, according to Stenton, the soke was Danish.’
      • ‘The private sokes of Stigand and Harold, however, gradually disappeared when cathedral, castle and Mancroft were raised on the sites of the sokes.’
      • ‘The larger sokes covered wide areas and berewicks and sokelands could be either whole or parts of a village.’
      • ‘A royal estate served, in turn, as an administrative centre for a cantref, a territory including numerous townships, analogous to the English soke or primitive ‘shire’.’
      territory, region, province, district, area, zone
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Late Old English, back-formation from obsolete soken ‘habitual visiting of a place’.