debt


Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Financial, Acronyms, Idioms, Wikipedia.
Related to debt: Debt Financing, Debt relief

debt,

obligation in services, money, or goods owed by one party, the debtor, to another, the creditor. When contested, debts are collected by a civil suit upon which the judge renders a judgment, and an execution is levied on the debtor's property. In ancient nations debt was associated with slavery because the insolvent debtor and his household were in many cases turned over to the creditor to perform compulsory services. In early Rome the insolvent was given into custody of the creditor for 60 days prior to his sale as a slave, subject to such treatment as pleased the creditor. That arrangement was mitigated in 494 B.C. by the first of the uprisings of the Roman people; turbulence in Rome afterward was to a large extent occasioned by the desire to restrain creditors. In Greece the reforms of SolonSolon
, c.639–c.559 B.C., Athenian statesman, lawgiver, and reformer. He was also a poet, and some of his patriotic verse in the Ionic dialect is extant. At some time (perhaps c.600 B.C.) he led the Athenians in the recapture of Salamis from the Megarians.
..... Click the link for more information.
 had a similar origin. In ancient Israel, every 50th year—the year of jubilee—Jewish debtors were freed and their obligations were canceled. Sumerian and Babylonian kings also periodically proclaimed jubilee periods when debts over seven years old were forgiven. Imprisonment for debt, which once crowded prisons, was ended in theory in England and the United States by laws enacted in the 19th cent. The laws of bankruptcybankruptcy,
in law, settlement of the liabilities of a person or organization wholly or partially unable to meet financial obligations. The purposes are to distribute, through a court-appointed receiver, the bankrupt's assets equitably among creditors and, in most instances, to
..... Click the link for more information.
 are designed to apply the resources of debtors to their debts and thereafter to remove such legal obligations.

Bibliography

See D. Graeber, Debt: The First 5,000 Years (2011).

References in classic literature ?
sorry for thee, yet I am right glad that I have had a chance to pay a part of my debt of kindness to thy good master Robin Hood, for it might have gone ill with thee had I not come, young man.
Quoth he in a trembling voice, "I owe thee a debt I can never hope to repay, Sir Richard, for let me tell thee, I would rather lose my right hand than have such ill befall young David of Doncaster as seemed like to come upon him at Denby.
Wilt thou not ease him of some of his debts, Sir Prior?
She had signified, however, her intention of leaving her inheritance between Sir Pitt's second son and the family at the Rectory, and had once or twice paid the debts of Rawdon Crawley in his career at college and in the army.
For debt that calls for a variable rate of interest, taxpayers should assume debt provides for a "fixed interest rate corresponding to the rate established by the variable rate [within the meaning of Prop.
In 1971, the Tax Court examined this issue in which a transferor contributed its own debt obligation to a transferee in exchange for transferee stock in a transaction to which Sec.
Debt consolidation is a popular term marketed on television, radio, and in newspapers as a simpler, easier, less costly way to pay off your debts.
Then President Clinton announced his plan to eliminate the debt by 2013.
In the right circumstances subordinated debt offers significant advantages, but it is not for everyone.
In choosing to link the two events, the veiling of the clock and the gift ceremony, the Durst family felt it was important that the public understand that the national debt was only one of many issues that Seymour Durst felt strongly about.
Getting debt relief firmly onto the politicial agenda, both in Canada and worldwide, is one sure sign of success, Ms.
Now, the assumption of debt in an acquisition is nothing out of the ordinary.