Husband

is the house farmer. Bonde is Norwegian for a “farmer,” hence bondë-by (a village where farmers dwell); and hus means “house.” Hus-band-man is the man-of-the-house farmer. The husband, therefore, is the master farmer, and the husband-man the servant or labourer. “Husbandry” is the occupation of a farmer or husband; and a bondman or bondslave has no connection with bond = fetters, or the verb to bind. It means simply a cultivator of the soil. (See Villein.) Old Tusser was in error when he derived the word from “house-band,” as in the following distich:

The name of the husband, what is it to say?
Of wife and of house hold the band and the stay.

Five Hundred Points of Good Husbandry.

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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