Meaning of cucking-stool in English:


Pronunciation /ˈkʌkɪŋstuːl/


  • A chair to which disorderly women were tied and then ducked into water or subjected to public ridicule as a punishment.

    ‘Rogues and vagabonds are often stocked and whipped; scolds are ducked upon cucking-stools in the water.’
    • ‘This rather expensive cucking-stool must have been in very frequent use in the good town of Kingston; for in the old account books there are numerous entries of money paid for its repairs.’
    • ‘The sole exception is the ‘cucking-stool’ which did not require water - this could be located anywhere but was usually placed outside the offenders house.’
    • ‘In Scotland ‘flyting queans’ sat in ignominy in cucking-stools.’
    • ‘The cucking-stool, a very elaborate engine of the law, cost 1L. 3S. 4D.’


Middle English from obsolete cuck ‘defecate’, of Scandinavian origin; so named because a stool containing a chamber pot was often used for the purpose.