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Alderman

One of the seniors or elders. Now applied to a class of magistrates in corporate towns. In London an alderman is the chief magistrate in a ward appointed by election. There are also aldermen of the Country Council.

A turkey is called an alderman, both from its presence in aldermanic feast, and also because of its red and purple colours about the head and neck, which make it a sort of poultry alderman.

An alderman in chains,
by a similar effort of wit, is a turkey hung with sausages.

An Alderman

A burglar's tool; a crowbar for forcing safes. So called from the high rank it holds with burglars.

An Alderman

A cant term for half-a-crown. An alderman as chief magistrate is half a king in his own ward; and half a crown is half a king.

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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