- A prison or reform school for petty offenders.
The first Bridewell (a prison for "punishing disorderly and loose women and petty offenders”) was at Bridewell Palace (one of the many residences of King Henry VIII), named after the nearby St. Bride's Well and Church of St. Bride. The palace was under construction between 1515 - 1520.
Used in a sentence:
“So long as the Machiavellian thralldom of malefactors remains propitious, the Bridewells will ever be hoatching, with new ones perpetually built in answer to the exigency.”
Some sentences from posts of other words:
“After a month in the Bridewell, the ennui was sufficient to transform the usually sanguine Mr. Stockton into an Ophelian fainéant.”
“Old Mr. Wallytag is the most gimlet-eyed gongoozler in New York, and his tibialoconcupiscent peeping-Tomery is going to land him in Bridewell one day.”
“Now stop it with all that mafficking about and come inside before I’m forced to call the local constabulary; you know they’ll keep you in the Bridewell for a fortnight if you’re not more judicious with your callithumpery!”
“Did you hear that Gareth found an abscotchalater hiding in a latibule in their barn, they clapped the Darbies on him and hauled him off to Bridewell!”
“His irascible disposition has landed him in Bridewell more than once!”