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A secretary, secretary of state, or minister of a king or other high nobleman.

The king's chancellor in England during the Middle Ages was given a variety of duties, including drawing up writs that permitted the initiation of a lawsuit in one of the common-law courts and deciding disputes in a way that gave birth to the system of law called Equity. His governmental department was called the Chancery.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer in England is like the secretary of the U.S. treasury, but in former times he also presided over a court called the Court of Exchequer, which at first heard disputes over money owed to the king but eventually heard a wide variety of cases involving money. This jurisdiction was founded on the theory that a creditor who could not collect a debt would later be less able to pay whatever he owed to the king.

Chancellor has also been used as the title for a judge who sits in a court of equity, for the president of a university, or for the public official in charge of higher education in some states.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


n. from the old English legal system, a chancellor is a judge who sits in what is called a chancery (equity) court with the power to order something be done (as distinguished from just paying damages.) Almost all states now combine chancery (equity) functions and law in the same courts. (See: equity)

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.


Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006

CHANCELLOR. An officer appointed to preside over a court of chancery, invested with various powers in the several states.
     2. The office of chancellor is of Roman origin. He appears, at first, to have been a chief scribe or secretary, but he was afterwards invested with judicial power, and had superintendence over the other officers of the empire. From the Romans, the title and office passed to the church, and therefore every bishop of the catholic church has, to this day, his chancellor, the principal judge of his consistory. When the modern kingdoms of Europe were established upon the ruins of the empire, almost every state preserved its chancellor, with different jurisdictions and dignities, according to their different constitutions. In all he seems to have had a supervision of all charters, letters, and such other public instruments of the crown, as were authenticated in the most solemn manner; and when seals came into use, he had the custody of the public seal.
     3. An officer bearing this title is to be found in most countries of Europe, and is generally invested with extensive authority. The title and office of chancellor came to us from England. Many of our state constitutions provide for the appointment of this officer, who is by them, and by the law of the several states, invested with power as they provide. Vide Encyclopedie, b. t.; Encycl.. Amer. h.t.; Dict. de Jur. h.t.; Merl. Rep. h.t.; 4 Vin. Ab. 374; Blake's Ch. Index, h.t.; Woodes. Lect. 95.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
Therefore, Deputy Chancellor Ockleton perceived 'improvement' as any procedure helping to conserve or reveal the historical qualities of the bells.
Deputy chancellor at Houston Community College Dr Art Tyler who travelled from USA to award the HCC diplomas on behalf of chancellor Mary Spangler and the HCC board of trustees also congratulated the graduates.
Mohammed Ismail, Deputy Chancellor of University of Sharjah for Financial and Administrative Affairs, who made the announcement, had recently participated at a meeting held at the headquarters of the Islamic World Charity Organisation in Kuwait.
Spindelegger, who is head of the conservative People's Party and deputy chancellor in a coalition with Social Democrats, has been taking an increasing hard line on euro zone laggards as polls show eurosceptic sentiment on the rise ahead of parliamentary elections due next year.
Michael Spindel Egger, the Deputy Chancellor, called on the Syrian regime, in a statement released late on Friday, to "present immediate clarifications regarding claims about the usage of cluster bombs.
Mohammad Mehdi Mazaheri, deputy chancellor of Azad for cultural affairs, told ISNA, "Good things have been done for launching single gender universities.
Social Ministry deputy chancellor Iivi Normet adds that instead of allocating more funds, the Finance Ministry has warned that the social tax collection forecast will be cut for this year.
Manning, whose official title is deputy chancellor of Commonwealth Medicine, started at the former UMass Medical Center in 1978 as associate hospital director for mental health affairs.
Merkel's conservatives risk losing the state after 60 years while her Free Democrat coalition partners are faring so badly in polls that their leader, Deputy Chancellor and Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, faces calls to step down.
He was talking to Dr Guido Westerwelle, Deputy Chancellor / Foreign Minister of Federal Republic of Germany who alongwith his delegation called on the Prime Minister at the PMs House on Sunday.
He was talking to Dr Guido Westerwelle, Deputy Chancellor and Foreign Minister of Germany who alongwith his delegation called on the Prime Minister at Prime Minister House here Sunday morning.
Kaya Henderson, deputy chancellor for the District of Columbia Public Schools, will join leading education experts at 'The Education Project 2010,' conference to be held from October 8 to 10 in Bahrain.

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