What was a "syndic"?

Oct 2012
Luther wrote: "All the counts, lords, cities, and castles must have sydics, city clerks, and other scholars." Does anyone know what a "syndic" was?


Forum Staff
Oct 2011
Italy, Lago Maggiore
A syndic, if I remember well, was an executive officer c/o a faculty in a University.


Ad Honorem
Nov 2010
Western Eurasia
Luther uses the word sindicos in the German original too

Also auch alle Graven, Herrn, Stedte, Schlosser müssen Sindicos, Stad schreiber und sonst gelerte haben.

I would guess here it means some sort of magistrate, mayor, elected judge or other formal legal representative of the town or castle.


Ad Honorem
Oct 2010
Syndic is a representative of a syndicate. Think of as a spokesperson/delegate for the local business council/chamber of commerce.
Apr 2018
The syndic in origin was a rapresentative of cities during trials where cities subjected. The word is of greek origin and appeared during XIII century in Kingdom of Sicily.

deaf tuner

Ad Honoris
Oct 2013
(Sorry, I'm lazy, so I'll just paste the German Wiki's quote):

" In the Middle Ages and the early modern period , a syndic was responsible for the legal affairs of a city or a local authority. He advised mayors and councilors on legal matters and drafted legal opinions on their behalf. Often they were lawyers who had studied law at a university ( ius commune ) - mostly Roman law ( corpus iuris civilis ), but occasionally also canon law . If a city had a city clerk (law clerk) with the appropriate legal education, he was responsible for the duties of the Syndicus. In addition to the urban syndici, there were the landscape Syndici. These were employed by the estates as legal advisors.

Syndicus in the Hanseatic Cities

The Syndicus (formerly Stadtsyndicus ) in Bremen or the Senate Syndicus in Hamburg took in the Free Cities of Bremen and Hamburg after Lübeck model as legal scholars and later lawyers a public office true. Today, the position is also comparable to that of a Council of State and representatives of a senator in his office and in Bremen in the Senate.
See also:

(source: Syndikus – Wikipedia)

Generally, the term designated a person nominated/elected to defend, council, administrate the interests of a comunity, association, etc. The function still exists under the name in Germany, France, Belgium, for example.

(In some cases - Italy, Sardegna, Savoya - it was the equivalent of what we call mayor)