INSTITOR, civ. law. A clerk in a store an agent.
     2. He was so called because he watched over the business with which he was charged; and it is immaterial whether he was employed in making a sale in a store, or whether charged with any other business. Institor appellatus est ex eo, quod negotio gerendo instet; nec multum facit tabernae sit praepositus, an cuilibet alii negotiationi. Dig. lib. 14, tit. 3, l. 3. Mr., Bell says, that the charge given to a clerk to manage a store or shop, is called institorial power. 1 Bell's Com. 479, 6th ed.; Ersk. Inst. B. 3, t. 3, Sec. 46; 1 Stair's Inst. by Brodie, B. 1, tit. 11, Sec. 12, 18, 19; Story on Ag. 8.

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On the rather slim basis of the antiphon for Mark 16:1--"Dum transisset sabbatum Maria Magdalena et Maria Iacobi et Salome emerunt aromata" (When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdela, Mary the Mother of James, and Salome bought aromatic oils)--a character known as Mercator or Institor entered the Latin liturgical drama as early as the eleventh century.
Written by the Dominican priests Institor and Sprenger, this book was one of the principle manuals for persecuting witches.
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