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hundred,

in English history, a subdivision of a shire, first mentioned in the 10th cent. and surviving as a unit of local government into the 19th cent. It is thought that in origin the hundred comprised 100 geld hides, the geld hide being the basic Anglo-Saxon land unit for taxation purposes; but the hundreds varied considerably in size. The number of hundreds in a shire also varied, and their boundaries were continually changed. The hundred had its own court. The Saxon tithing groups, which had corporate responsibility for the crimes committed by their members, came before it, and personal pleas of debt and trespass were also brought there. Originally presided over by the king's reeves, the hundred courts continued to meet regularly every four weeks until the 13th cent., by which time many of them had been taken over by local lords. They gradually lost importance and from the 16th cent. had little more than a formal existence. In Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire, Rutland, and Leicestershire the unit equivalent to the hundred was called a wapentake; in Northumberland, Cumberland, Westmorland, and Durham, a ward. Hundreds were also used as subdivisions of counties in some of the Thirteen Colonies, and continued to be used in Delaware as state legislative districts until the 1960s.

Bibliography

See H. M. Cam, The Hundred and the Hundred Rolls (1930, repr. 1963); F. M. Stenton, Anglo-Saxon England (3d ed. 1971).

Hundred

 

(German, Hundertschaft), a social and military organization among the ancient Germanic peoples during the period of transition from the primitive communal system to feudalism. The popular assembly of the hundred met under an elected hundred-leader and decided judicial, administrative, and other questions; the hundred was the basic unit of allotting troops among the Germanic tribes and tribal federations.

In continental Europe the hundred disappeared with the rise of feudalism. In England it gradually came under the authority of the king, in the person of the bailiff. The hundred endured until the late 19th century as an administrative-territorial unit with limited administrative and police functions. Several hundreds formed a shire.

hundred

1. the cardinal number that is the product of ten and ten; five score
2. a numeral, 100, C, etc., representing this number
3. Maths the position containing a digit representing that number followed by two zeros
4. History an ancient division of a county in England, Ireland, and parts of the US
References in classic literature ?
Tell me for the hundredth time that you refuse my love, which had your mother's sanction.
It had been said that evening a hundred times -- and Scarron was at his hundredth bon mot on the subject; he was very nearly at the end of his humoristic tether, but one despairing effort saved him.
Now, as touching this Great Carbuncle, I am free to own that I have never had a glimpse of it; but be it only the hundredth part so bright as people tell, it will surely outvalue the Great Mogul's best diamond, which he holds at an incalculable sum.
Suppose a marriage, and the husband has ONLY $1,000 for his pocket, this would bring down the ways and means to $2,000 per annum; or less than a hundredth part of the expense of keeping ONE pocket-handkerchief; and when you come to include rent, fuel, marketing, and other necessaries, you see, my dear Miss Monson, there is a great deal of poetry in paying so much for a pocket-handkerchief.
It is now that part of New York known as Bloomingdale, on the west side, between about Seventieth and One Hundredth Streets.
Tho' pleasing both in her Person and Manners (between ourselves) she never possessed the hundredth part of my Beauty or Accomplishments.
Whatever I can do, as you well know, I am always ready enough to do for the good of those I love; and, though I could never feel for this little girl the hundredth part of the regard I bear your own dear children, nor consider her, in any respect, so much my own, I should hate myself if I were capable of neglecting her.
and again I could return myself no answer or, rather, for the hundredth time I told myself that I detested her.
Their one hope, said he, was unostentatious flight from village to village till they reached civilization; and, for the hundredth time dissolved in tears, he demanded of the high stars why the Sahibs 'had beaten holy man'.
I say," Mowgli went on, just as though he were Baloo repeating an old Jungle Law for the hundredth time to a foolish cub-- "I say that not a tooth in the Jungle is bared against you; not a foot in the Jungle is lifted against you.
But a benevolent Providence has ordained that aunts cannot call for ever; and it is on record that when George entered his box on the two hundredth night of that great London success,
Philip did not know how much his uncle would leave, and he reckoned out for the hundredth time what was the least sum upon which he could finish the curriculum at the hospital, take his degree, and live during the time he wished to spend on hospital appointments.