/tohl/, n.
1. a payment or fee exacted by the state, the local authorities, etc., for some right or privilege, as for passage along a road or over a bridge.
2. the extent of loss, damage, suffering, etc., resulting from some action or calamity: The toll was 300 persons dead or missing.
3. a tax, duty, or tribute, as for services or use of facilities.
4. a payment made for a long-distance telephone call.
5. (formerly, in England) the right to take such payment.
6. a compensation for services, as for transportation or transmission.
7. grain retained by a miller in payment for grinding.
8. to collect (something) as toll.
9. to impose a tax or toll on (a person).
10. to collect toll; levy toll.
[bef. 1000; (n.) ME, OE toll (c. D tol, G Zoll, ON tollr), assimilated var. of OE toln < LL toloneum, for teloneum < Gk teloneîon tollhouse, akin to telónes tax collector, télos tax; (v.) ME tollen, deriv. of the n.]
Syn. 3. tariff, levy, impost, exaction.
/tohl/, v.t.
1. to cause (a large bell) to sound with single strokes slowly and regularly repeated, as for summoning a congregation to church, or esp. for announcing a death.
2. to sound or strike (a knell, the hour, etc.) by such strokes: In the distance Big Ben tolled five.
3. to announce by this means; ring a knell for (a dying or dead person).
4. to summon or dismiss by tolling.
5. to lure or decoy (game) by arousing curiosity.
6. to allure; entice: He tolls us on with fine promises.
7. to sound with single strokes slowly and regularly repeated, as a bell.
8. the act of tolling a bell.
9. one of the strokes made in tolling a bell.
10. the sound made.
Also, tole (for defs. 5, 6).
[1175-1225; ME tollen to entice, lure, pull, hence prob. to make (a bell) ring by pulling a rope; akin to OE -tyllan, in fortyllan to attract, allure]
/tohl/, v.t. Law.
to suspend or interrupt (as a statute of limitations).
[1425-75; late ME tollen to remove, legally annul < AF tolre, tol(l)er < L tollere to remove, take away]

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Sum levied on users of certain roads, canals, bridges, tunnels, and other such travel and transportation infrastructure, primarily to pay for construction and maintenance.

Tolls were known in the ancient world and were widely used in medieval Europe as a means of supporting bridge construction. Canal building, which became extensive in Europe in the 18th–19th centuries, was financed chiefly by tolls, and many major roads were built by private companies with the right to collect tolls. In the U.S. the National Road, built beginning in 1806, was initially financed through the sale of public land, but maintenance problems led Congress to authorize tolls. Toll roads diminished in the latter part of the 19th century, but the idea was revived with the Pennsylvania Turnpike in the 1930s, and after World War II many states built toll expressways. In many countries tolls are also used to finance long-span bridges, major tunnels, and highways. They have also been blamed for both reducing, and abetting, rush-hour traffic congestion. Canal tolls are still charged in some parts of the world, notably on the Suez and Panama canals.

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      sum levied on users of certain roads, highways, canals, bridges, tunnels, ferries, and other such conveniences, primarily to pay the construction and maintenance costs for those structures. Tolls were known in the ancient world and were especially popular in the European Middle Ages, when they were widely used to support bridge construction. The chapel on the Pont d'Avignon served also as a toll station. The fee for a horse and rider was two deniers (pennies); a wagon, four deniers; a donkey, cow, or sheep, one-half denier. On Old London Bridge, tolls were charged both for traffic over and navigation under the bridge. A valued medieval privilege, given for special services or in return for a payment, was freedom from tolls.

      Canal building, which became extensive in Europe and North America in the 18th and 19th centuries, was financed chiefly by tolls; and many major roads, such as the British turnpikes, were built by private companies with the right to collect tolls. The National Road (Cumberland Road), built in the United States beginning in 1806, was financed out of the sale of public land; but maintenance problems soon caused Congress to authorize tolls. Toll roads passed out of fashion in the later 19th century, but the idea was revived with the Pennsylvania Turnpike in the 1930s; and after World War II several U.S. states built toll expressways. The Italian autostrade, begun in the 1920s, were toll financed. Tolls as a means of paying for long-span bridges and major tunnels have been much more prevalent in the United States than elsewhere. One objection to tolls has been that road users are in effect subject to double taxation: gasoline taxes and road tolls.

      Canal tolls are still charged in many parts of the world but with wide variations. Such major international waterways as the Suez and Panama canals charge tolls, but many other international waterways do not. French canals charge no tolls; a few German canals do; and Belgian canals charge enough to cover maintenance only.

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Universalium. 2010.

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