Bailiwick

Bailiwick

ˈbālēˌwik

Noun

  • (One’s bailiwick) One’s sphere of operations or particular area of interest.
  • (Law) The district or jurisdiction of a bailie or bailiff.

Get a new word in your inbox every day.

By subscribing you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

Example Sentences

“I’m hopeless in the sciences, but 19th-century literature is my bailiwick.”

“Ceramics are my bailiwick, but I’d like to take some photography classes this summer.”

“I’m only here to observe, because this district is out of my bailiwick.”

Word Origin

English, mid-19th century

Why this word?

We use “bailiff” to describe something specific — the official who oversees the security of a courtroom — but in the 15th century, it referred to the sheriff of a town or region, and their bailiwick was their area of jurisdiction. In the 1800s, “bailiwick” began to be used to describe a person’s area of expertise or study. A biology professor’s bailiwick, for example, might be the classification of mammals.

  • More brands you’ll love

    Elevate Your Everyday

    More brands you’ll love

    Elevate Your Everyday

    Subscribe to Better Report to receive tips and tricks that will save you money, maximize your time, and improve your life.

    Subscribe to Better Report
    By clicking “Subscribe” you’re agreeing to Better Report Terms of Use and Privacy Policy

Learn a new word Metanoia

ˌmedəˈnoiə