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The New International Encyclopædia/Distringas

DISTRINGAS. The name of a writ or process in the nature of an attachment or execution, taken from the emphatic word of the writ directed to the sheriff—viz. “It is hereby commanded that you distrain” the defendant, etc. It was formerly issued in England for a variety of purposes, such as forcing a defendant who neglected to appear to present himself in court, or forcing a corporation to obey a subpoena, or compelling jurors to attend court, or a defendant in an action in detinue after judgment to deliver the goods to the plaintiff. The writ has been abolished in England, as well as in most of the United States, although in Virginia it is retained as a form of execution in cases of detinue. See Execution.