Bur"gess (?), n. [OE. burgeis, OF. burgeis, fr. burcfortified town, town, F. bourg village, fr. LL. burgus fort, city; from the German; cf. MHG. burc, G. burg. See 1st Borough, and cf. 2d Bourgeois.]
An inhabitant of a borough or walled town, or one who possesses a tenement therein; a citizen or freeman of a borough. Blackstone.
⇒ "A burgess of a borough corresponds with a citizen of a city." Burrill.
One who represents a borough in Parliament.
A magistrate of a borough.
An inhabitant of a Scotch burgh qualified to vote for municipal officers.
⇒ Before the Revolution, the representatives in the popular branch of the legislature of Virginia were called burgesses; they are now called delegates.
Burgess oath. See Burgher, 2.
© Webster 1913.