PRESIDENCY, an administrative unit of the Indian empire. The word is derived from the title of president or chief of the council of a principal factory under the early East India Company a title which lasted until governors were appointed under act of parliament in 1784. It thence came to be applied to the three original provinces of Bengal, Madras, and Bombay. It is now restricted to Madras and Bombay, in distinction to the lieutenant-governorships. In Anglo-Indian usage, " presidency " was also applied to the capital city as opposed to the country beyond, termed the " mofussil "; and this usage lingers in such phrases as " presidency town," " presidency magistrate," and " presidency college."
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)